ANNAPOLIS, MARYLAND – With days left for application submissions to the Blueprint’s Accountability and Implementation Board (AIB) and lack of transparency in the nominations process, the Chair of Maryland Alliance for Racial Equity in Education (MAREE), sharlimar douglass, issued the following statement:
“The Blueprint for Maryland’s Future was a victory for Black and brown students and teachers, one that took years of advocacy, collaboration, and coalition building. But the fight to ensure racial equity is still prioritized is not over. As we move into the implementation stage, we must continue to ensure that the voices that represent and understand our communities are at the table. The nominations committee only has one shot to get this right. We call on the committee to be transparent in its process of choosing the board members that will bear this six-year commitment to our most vulnerable students.”
MAREE sent a letter to the AIB nominating committee that included an outline of the criteria related to expertise and background with race equity that the committee must include in its selection of board members. The letter includes its recommendations for a student, parent, and/or advocate with vast experience working in predominantly Black and brown schools – as well as selecting individuals with deep knowledge of racial disparities and their root causes in Maryland. MAREE has requested a meeting with the nominations committee and looks forward to collaborating with it to ensure that students of color remain represented throughout the Blueprint implementation process.
MAREE is a coalition of education advocacy, civil rights, and community-based organizations that are committed to eliminating racial disparities in Maryland’s education system. Coalition members include 1977-II Action Group, Advocates for Youth and Children, Baltimore Corps, Attendance Works, Strong Schools Maryland, Family League of Baltimore, World Class Graduates, ACLU of Maryland, Alliance for Maryland Parents, Teachers and Students, immigrant advocacy organization CASA, Greater Baltimore Urban League, and The Education Trust.