Governor Larry Hogan today, following his recent announcement to launch the next chapter of education reform in Maryland, committed another $130 million in additional education spending, including prekindergarten expansion and Concentrations of Poverty Grants. The governor will also introduce new legislation to expand access to Advanced Placement (AP) tests for low-income students.
“I believe very strongly that every single child in Maryland deserves access to a world-class education, regardless of what neighborhood they happen to grow up in, and that commitment must begin with our youngest Marylanders,” said Governor Hogan. “Education has been, and will continue to be, our administration’s highest priority. With this funding, we are reaffirming our commitment to provide increased investment for our schools, more accountability for Maryland parents, teachers, and taxpayers, and most importantly, better results for our children.”
More than $100 million will be dedicated over the next two years to expand access to early support and interventions for young children and their families, including access to high-quality, full-day prekindergarten for three- and four-year-olds. In Fiscal Year 2020, $31.7 million in Pre-K Supplemental Grants provided funding for more than 8,000 four-year-olds in full-day Pre-K.
The governor also committed more than $30 million over two years to fund Concentration of Poverty Grants to provide full-time coverage of health care practitioners and community school coordinators. The funding would also include wraparound services for extended learning time, safe transportation to school, and additional social workers, mentors, counselors, and psychologists. This investment would allow the state to provide funding for a total of 309 local schools.
Since taking office, Governor Hogan has invested a record $32 billion in K-12 education and committed over $420 million above the current funding levels required by legislatively mandated formulas. Additionally, this year the governor released $255 million for the Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education’s Fiscal Year 2020 spending plan.
AP Opportunities Act of 2020
Governor Hogan committed to fund over $1 million with the AP Opportunities Act of 2020 to provide low-income students in Maryland access to AP tests free of charge. This legislation would cover the costs of over 25,500 AP exams.
“With this important legislation, we are giving deserving Maryland students from low-income families the opportunity to take AP exams free of charge,” said Governor Hogan. “We are excited to expand access to the AP program, which gives high school students the chance to pursue college-level studies, allows them to learn skills that are essential to college and career access, and provides students with an opportunity to save time and money through college placement and credit-granting policies.”