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 Upton/Druid Heights CSA, we heard from 11 participants. We held one ‘kitchen table conversation’ in this CSA, which took place at Umar Boxing in the neighborhood of Druid Heights on June 26, 2014. Along with this conversation, we received an additional response via an online survey. Of the 11 participants, 3 chose to submit at least some demographic data.
Some of the themes that we heard most often from participants in our discussions included:
- Participants discussed teachers and school staff, and shared the opinion that there are great teachers, but that the district needs to hire more male teachers.
- There was a request for more extracurricular/afterschool activities and options for students. Participants called on schools to implement more of these programs.
- Participants also discussed standards, curriculum, and instruction, and requested that the district create a more culturally inclusive curriculum.