Panels Bring Together Top So. Md. Educators to Explore Issues Saturday at SMCM

ST. MARY’S CITY, Md. (March 03, 2010) — What are the key issues facing public schools today? How are schools affected by the high demands for educational success coupled with the economic downturn? Finally, if we could dream, what would we change? St. Mary’s College of Maryland’s Student Education Association (SEA) and the Department of Educational Studies will bring together top area educators, including the superintendents of St. Mary’s, Calvert, and Prince George’s public schools, to share their ideas and hopes. The colloquium, “Schools that Learn,” is 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Saturday, March 6, in Daugherty Palmer Commons.

“Anyone with an interest in education will benefit greatly from attending this colloquium,” said Julia Bates, of the Educational Studies department.

The opening keynote address will be delivered by Cathy Allen, member of the St. Mary’s County Board of Education and president of the Maryland State Board of Education. She will explain the actions available to boards of education as they endeavor to shape the work of school systems. At noon, Michael Martirano, superintendent of St. Mary’s County Public Schools, Jack Smith, superintendent of Calvert County Public Schools, and William Hite, superintendent of Prince George’s County Public Schools, will share a panel on how leadership can impact change in schools as they face the demands of No Child Left Behind.

Other featured speakers: Jennifer Rankin, Maryland Teacher of the Year from Garrett County, will explain how she prepares her middle school students for success in both English and algebra standardized assessments. Joining her on that panel is Kelli Hill, SMCM senior, who researched teachers’ responses to standardized testing. Makeda Hilliard, an SMCM graduate, will describe the work of the SEED School, an innovative program for inner city youth. Judith White, a Prince George’s County lead teacher, will describe how her school is making steady progress. And Scott Smith, of St. Mary’s County Public Schools, will lay out the implementation of the Fairlead Academy concept designed to support ninth grade students who are struggling academically.

Open to the campus and the public, the discussion is free, lunch is available for $10. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. with the keynote address at 9:15.

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