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 Washington Village/Pigtown CSA, we heard from 9 participants. We held one ‘kitchen table conversation’ in this CSA, which took place at Café Jovial at 784 Washington Boulevard on July 12, 2014. Along with this conversation, we received additional responses via an online survey. All 9 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 discussed community and parental involvement in schools and suggested that schools need to create better community-school partnerships and increase parental involvement through strengthening their PTA/PTO.
- There was also discussion regarding standards, curriculum, and instruction. Participants shared their opinion that the district needs to implement higher expectations and learning standards for students, and that schools should offer more flexibility in their curriculum to cater to individual student needs.
- Participants requested that more activities and programs be made available for students.