What's next for the Johns Hopkins police force? New state law allows private school to set up armed department

There are sleeping bags rolled up in a corner, snacks strewn around, and almost every wall on the first floor of the Johns Hopkins University’s administration building is covered with posters decrying plans for a police department at the private institution. A small group of students is in its third week of occupying Garland Hall. Never mind that last week, Republican Gov. Larry Hogan signed into law a contentious bill allowing Hopkins to create a force of armed officers. (Balt. Sun)

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One of Mike Busch's final bills would provide protections to student loan borrowers

Wade Davis called Navient’s customer service in March, hoping to adjust the payment plan for his student loan. Davis, 36, and a freelance musician seeking full-time employment, said he couldn’t commit to his plan. After telling a representative from Navient — one of the major student loan servicing companies — of his current financial situation, the representative informed him he would have to sign up for a month-to-month payment plan that Davis said isn’t feasible with his current financial situation. (Balt. Sun)

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Former Charles County teacher convicted of sexually abusing minor

A former substitute teacher in Charles County who had a months-long relationship with a middle school student has been convicted of sexual abuse of a minor. 31-year-old Keith Allan Kirkstan of Waldorf, Maryland, was convicted on Tuesday after a five-day trial. He was teaching at John Hanson Middle School when prosecutors say the relationship with the 12-year-old began, back in October 2017. (WTOP)

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Poll: Most believe schools less safe after Columbine

Twenty years after the Columbine High School shooting made practicing for armed intruders as routine as fire drills, many parents have only tepid confidence in the ability of schools to stop a gunman, according to a new poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. And while most Americans consider schools less safe than they were 20 years ago, the poll finds a majority say schools aren’t at fault for shootings. Bullying, the availability of guns, the internet and video games share more of the blame. (Times-News)

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New county schools safety, security policy up for vote

The Allegany County public school system has made many changes to improve security since the Columbine massacre 20 years ago. And there will be more to come. The school board on Tuesday could vote on a school safety and security policy. According to the proposed document, the school system’s superintendent will appoint a mental health coordinator whose duties will include “developing plans for delivering behavioral health and wraparound services to students who exhibit behaviors of concern.” (Times-news)

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In inaugural budget, County Executive Ball gives $605 million to Howard school system

Making education the “top funding priority of his administration,” Howard County Executive Calvin Ball is proposing to fund the county school system $605.2 million in his inaugural spending plan for fiscal 2020. Ball released his $1.7 billion proposed budget Thursday evening, including the $16.2 million increase in funding to the school system over this fiscal year’s budget. (Balt. Sun)

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Maryland school system rolls out report cards showing disparity in achievement

School officials in suburban Maryland have long debated how to tackle achievement gaps between white students and their classmates of color. But the issue is drawing new attention as Montgomery County rolls out school-by-school accountability report cards. The snapshots of student performance, posted online, key in on black, Latino and economically disadvantaged students at the county’s 206 schools, looking at each group, along with the intersection of race and poverty. (Wash. Post)

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America, take note: Georgetown students are acting on the courage of their convictions

While many are confounded by the subject of reparations for slavery, students at Georgetown University have acted on the courage of their convictions. America, take note. These students have seen how the legacy of slavery manifests itself in racial disparities — in health, wealth, housing and employment. And they know that the outcomes are no accident. They are the intended results of an economic system rooted in racism and designed to maintain itself in perpetuity. (Wash. Post)

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