Toward the end of 2013, the Fund for Educational Excellence embarked on an intensive study of Baltimore residents’ views on their public schools. Over the course of four months in 2014, we heard from 859 Baltimore residents representing all 55 community statistical areas (CSAs) in Baltimore City through a series of intimate conversations about schools and neighborhoods.
In the Poppleton/The Terraces/Hollins Market CSA, we heard from 7 participants. We collected responses via one-on-one conversations with residents of the CSA, along with additional responses via an online survey. All 7 participants chose to submit at least some demographic data.
Some of the themes that we heard most often from participants in our discussions included:
- Participants shared the opinion that there need to be more activities and options for students. Respondents requested that the district/schools implement more programs that give students opportunities to engage in positive experiences, with suggestions that included art programs, music programs, life skills activities, and recreational programs. Further, some participants suggested that these activities be open to families and community members as well.
- There was discussion regarding teachers and school staff and how teacher quality continuity needs to be improved across schools. Participants also suggested that teachers need improved guidance on all new instructional material.
- Participants also discussed community and parental involvement in schools, and suggested that schools should actively encourage more engagement and build better school/community partnerships. Respondents also shared the opinion that schools cannot replace the support that parents should be giving children, and that parents need to be accountable as well.