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Exciting news from the BCP Schools: City Springs Elementary/Middle School,
Govans Elementary School, Hampstead Hill Academy and Wolfe Street Academy.

BCP May 2016 Newsletter
In this issue:
Celebs as Smart as (But Not Smarter Than) BCP 5th Graders

For the first time in five years, the Baltimore "big shots" demonstrated that they were as smart as (but not smarter than) the Baltimore Curriculum Project 5th Graders.

Delegate Brooke Lierman, Fox 45'sTraffic Jam Jimmy, Victor Abiamiri and Alison Perkins-Cohen tied with BCP 5th graders Selene Santos Gonzalez, Dwight Guyton, Vivi Kaminaris, and Kayla Ward at the fifth annual Are You Smarter than a BCP 5th Grader? Quiz Show Fundraiser on April 21, 2016. MC Robert Heck kept the crowd laughing throughout the fierce competition.

The tying point was awarded when an enthusiastic audience supported Dwight's argument that although the Mississippi river flows from Minnesota to New Orleans, his response that it flows through Missouri on its way to New Orleans was also correct.

The only four dissenting adults were the "big shots."

"This year we celebrated two major milestones," said BCP President Laura Doherty. "BCP's 20th Anniversary and the 70th Birthday of BCP Founder Muriel Berkeley."

Over 250 people attended the event at City Springs Elementary/Middle School, which included a dinner donated by Nacho Mama's and Mama's on the Half Shell and live music by The Giggmohr Brothers.

Muriel Berkeley Innovation Fund
This year's event focused on raising money for the "Muriel Berkeley Innovation Fund", an endowment that will fund special BCP projects and pilot programs. Contributions to the fund may be made at: http://bit.ly/berkeleyfund


BCP would like to thank all of the planning committee members and volunteers: Laura Arvizu, Muriel Berkeley, Laura Doherty, Bailey Fine, George Hess, Brenda Kahn, Jeff Krick, Sue Lattimore, Marvelyn Johnson, Jon McGill, Tobi Morris, Mike Niccolini, Brandon Scott, Target, Larry Schugam, Angela Scott, and Scott Wolgamuth.

  • Presenting Sponsors: Mama's on the Half Shell, Nacho Mama's, Venable LLP, and WBFF Fox 45.
  • Supporting Sponsors: M&T Bank, Brown Advisory, Maryland Screen Printers and Pompeian.
  • Mama's on the Half Shell and Nacho Mama's for donating the delicious dinner.
  • WBFF Fox 45 for featuring a mini-Quiz Show with our students on the morning news and for producing two PSA's for BCP.
  • Victor Abiamiri, Delegate Brooke Lierman, Alison Perkins-Cohen and Traffic Jam Jimmy for playing.
  • Bob Heck for serving as MC.
  • MCN Build and Bill Beschorner for their $10,000 donation to City Springs for the new stage curtains, renovate main curtain and supports installed in the auditorium.
  • Target for bringing eleven volunteers.
  • Maryland Screen Printers for donating 300 event t-shirts.
  • Gerry's Tire Services for providing parking for this event.

City Springs Elementary/Middle School students Taishae Mohammed and  Antonia Quickly won the Grand Prize in the Hilda Mae Snoops Art Contest at this year's FlowerMart in Mount Vernon.

Middle School students from all over the Baltimore metropolitan area submitted artwork with the theme of "Showers of Happy Flowers" for this contest, which was judged by FlowerMart Art Director Larry Stevens and sponsored by 1st Mariner Bank.

The students received an award ribbon, a $100 cash award, and $100 for City Springs. They also had the opportunity to speak at the FlowerMart's Opening Ceremony on Friday, May 6, 2016. Their artwork will be displayed on the FlowerMart web site: http://www.flowermartmd.org/

"Both girls were asked to speak and did very well," said Leigh Caputo, a visual art teacher with Art with a Heart.

"We also stopped in the Pratt Library and the Clark Museum. Everyone was very well behaved and polite to everyone they spoke to. They represented City Springs beautifully."

The contest's namesake, Hilda Mae Snoops, was a nurse and a Federal health insurance program analyst who served as Maryland's Official Hostess throughout Governor William Donald Schaefer's administration.

City Springs and BCP would like to congratulate Taishae, Antonia, and Ms. Caputo on this achievement. Special thanks to Ms. Caputo for providing our students with the opportunity to enter this art contest and for taking them to the FlowerMart to receive their award.
Govans Teacher Sara Kelley Named Foster Parent of the Year 

BCP would like to congratulate Govans Elementary kindergarten teacher Sara Kelley and her husband Joe on being named Carroll County's Foster Parents of the Year by the Department of Social Services. The following excerpt is from an article in the Carroll County Times.

"I grew up with two brothers and a sister and my mom, and she has always been a big part of my life, and she is a big part of my foster children's lives," Sarah Kelley said. "She treats them as if they were her own grandkids; she is always helping out and doing things with them."

Kelley teaches kindergarten at Govans Elementary School in Baltimore City. It was there, about a year and a half ago, that she realized she would like to be a foster mom.

"We started it because I am a teacher in Baltimore City and was always seeing kids that needed homes and figured we could do that here and so started doing that ourselves," she said. "I don't have any of my own children - we just have two dogs - and now we have four kids. So we went from zero to four in less than a year."

It has been an interesting transition, learning on the fly with four children, but Kelley said her professional training has been a real help.

"I feel like how I am in the classroom kind of translates to at home - a lot of the same behaviors I see in the classroom I see at home and the same techniques work," she said, "Sticking with it and being able to go with the flow and just keeping in mind what's best of the kids at the end of the day."

Hampstead Hill Academy Career Fair 2016

Hampstead Hill Academy and BCP would like to thank everyone who participated in HHA's Annual Career Fair on April 29, 2016. Special thanks to Nicole Duprey for organizing the event.

Wolfe Street Academy (WSA) is an East Baltimore elementary school that is doing everything right, but funding shortfalls threaten to slash the very programs that helped Wolfe Street move from 77th to the 2nd highest performing elementary school in Baltimore City.

The school has a visionary principal, highly-skilled teachers, engaged parents, effective curricula, an award-winning community school strategy, and a holistic approach to education.

Wolfe Street Academy defies the odds!
WSA serves a student body where over 95% of the students come from low-income families and over 76% are English Language Learners. Research shows that poverty and limited english proficiency are two of the biggest barriers to learning; but WSA doesn't let these factors get in the way.

WSA has won a National Award for Excellence from the Coalition for Community Schools; received Title I Highest Performing School Reward Status from the Maryland State Department of Education; and consistently outranks most schools in attendance.

Funding Shortfalls Threaten Summer School and After-School
State education funding shortfalls and sunsetting grants threaten to slash some of the programs that have helped make WSA an exceptional school.

The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation has awarded WSA a generous $20,000 summer program grant and has provided funding for the after-school program for the past two years.

WSA needs another $25,000 to provide full-day summer programming for 90 students and at least $40,000 to continue providing after-school programming for 180 students.

The WSA Summer Program stems summer learning loss with literacy, math, science, and social studies instruction provided by certified teachers. Students enjoy a healthy breakfast and lunch, physical education, fine arts, music, agriculture, and weekly field trips.

The WSA After-School Program, an extended day model, provides 180 K-5 students with three
WETA produced this video about how WSA helps English Language Learners succeed.
WETA produced this video about how WSA helps English Language Learners succeed.
additional hours of academic instruction by certified teachers per week. Enrichment activities include string instrument instruction, concert band, robotics, a competitive chess club, and intramural soccer, tennis, and baseball.

The need for these programs is only increasing among our student population. While WSA has traditionally served a largely immigrant population, in the past most of our students have been born in the United States to immigrant parents.

Over the past two years, however, we have witnessed a 15% increase in the number of "newcomer" children who arrive from Central America and immediately enroll in school. These children are part of the exodus from gang violence, chaos and extreme poverty now plaguing countries like El Salvador and Honduras.

Some students have never had the chance to attend school before. All require extensive opportunities to catch up educationally, hear and learn English, adjust emotionally, make friends, and enjoy a nurturing and safe environment. These programs offer all of these supports.

Please support WSA today at:

Your contribution will make a real difference in the lives of our students.
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