Title I Office hosts best practices symposium


On March 31, the Office of Title I hosted its First Annual Title I Best Practices Symposium to bring all 47 BCPS Title I schools together to share their most effective instructional strategies.

“The intent of Title I is to ensure that all children have access to high-quality education and successfully meet state achievement standards,” says Dr. Kendra Johnson, Coordinator, Office of Title I. “We organized this symposium to promote ongoing reflection and laser-like focus on positively impacting student outcomes.”

She notes that, for two consecutive years, a Baltimore County Title I school has been identified as a National Title I Distinguished School for either sustained achievement or closing the achievement gap.

In addition to administrators from Title I schools, the symposium participants included: Dr. Joe A. Hairston, Superintendent; Dr. Roger Plunkett, Assistant Superintendent, Curriculum and Instruction; Dr. John Quinn, Executive Director, Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics; Sonja Karwacki, Executive Director, Liberal Arts;  Kalisha T. Miller, Director, Office of Special Education; Patricia A. Lawton, Assistant Superintendent, Elementary Schools Zone 2; Melissa E. DiDonato, Assistant to the Assistant Superintendent, Elementary Schools Zone 2; Karen T. Blannard, Assistant Superintendent, Elementary Schools Zone 1; Kathleen M. McMahon, Executive Director, Special Programs PreK-12/Equity and Assurance; Mandi Dietrich, Director, Office of School Improvement; and Margaret T. Johnson, Director, Office of World Languages.


The symposium featured the following presentations:

  • Use of Data – The Cycle for Quality Teaching, by Jane Lichter, Principal, Lansdowne Middle School
  • Job-Embedded Professional Development, by Christina Byers, Principal, Milbrook Elementary School
  • Improved Instruction through Co-teaching and Project-based Learning, by Patrice Goldys, Principal, Norwood Elementary School
  • Action Plans for Special Education Student Success, by Yasmin Stokes, Principal, Powhatan Elementary School
  • Extended Day and Reading/Writing Workshops, by Stephen Bender, Principal, Logan Elementary School
  • A Diverse School Community, by Bonnie Hess, Principal, Chadwick Elementary School
  • Parent Involvement – Responsive Relationships, by Mary Maddox, Principal, Johnnycake Elementary School

In addition, prior to the symposium, each principal was invited to share one best practice occurring on his or her school campus. The summaries were compiled in a publication that all symposium attendees received.

Title I is a grant program authorized through the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. The purpose of Title I is to provide supplemental resources to economically disadvantaged schools to support the achievement of its students.

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