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Maryland Blueprint & 
Accountability & Implementation Board


Learn about AEMS's advocacy work on Maryland's historic "Blueprint for Maryland's Future" education reform bill. Explore the history of this bill and learn how you can get involved with shaping the future of Maryland's public education to ensure it includes robust arts education for ALL Maryland public school students.


The Blueprint for Maryland's Future is a landmark piece of education reform legislation. In 2016, Governor Larry Hogan appointed William ‘Brit’ Kirwan to lead the Commission charged with making recommendations for the reform of Maryland's K-12 public education system. In 2019, the Commission completed its work and made its recommendations to the General Assembly of Maryland. Among the transformational recommendations made by the commission which resulted in 2020's HB1300 were:

  • More wrap-around school services like school-based health centers

  • Full-day pre-K for eligible 3 & 4 year old

  • Literacy intervention for K-3 studentsFunds needed to support students experiencing poverty & attending schools with concentrations of poverty

  • Better pay, more planning time, and a new career ladder system for teachers

  • Create more assistance to help teachers get certified and provide better teacher training.

  • More pathways for to be college and career ready by graduation, for all students, including English Language Learners and students in Special Education programs.


On March 17, 2020, the Maryland General Assembly passed The Blueprint for Maryland’s Future with an overwhelming majority. Despite this affirmation by the legislature, and having been responsible for empaneling the Blueprint Commission, on May 7, 2020 Larry Hogan vetoed the Blueprint, citing the economic downturn due to COVID-19. On February 8, 2021, the Maryland General Assembly overrode Governor Larry Hogan's veto, passing the Blueprint into law. The law called for the creation of an Accountability & Implementation Board to ensure the faithful execution of this landmark reform bill.

About the Blueprint


The Blueprint for Maryland’s Future Accountability & Implementation Board (AIB) is an independent unit of State government that was created to ensure that the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future is implemented as intended. ​The AIB holds State and local governments accountable for implementing the Blueprint with fidelity and evaluates whether the Blueprint’s outcomes are being achieved.

On December 1, 2022, the AIB adopted a Comprehensive Implementation Plan to guide State and local entities in implementing the Blueprint for Maryland's Future and achieving the intended outcomes. AEMS had a key role in providing feedback to ensure that the interests of the arts were represented in the final plan. Providing a robust block of testimony and targeted suggestions to include the arts, AEMS was able to accomplish the following changes finalized in the Comprehensive Implementation Plan:

  • In Pillar 3: a change was made to specifically identify Foundation formula funds and Concentration of Poverty grant funds to meet the requirements of subjects areas listed in COMAR, including the arts. The language includes the verbatim words: "including the arts."

  • In Pillar 4: arts programming is specifically listed as one of the wraparound services to be provided by community schools.

When not explicitly prioritized, the arts often take a back seat to other subjects and priorities despite their disproportionately positive impact on children. We need your advocacy help to avoid the unintended consequences of de-investment in the arts if they are not explicitly uplifted and protected. Education without the arts is NOT a world-class education!


Both the Maryland State Department of Education and the local school districts (known as Local Education Agencies/LEAs) were mandated to create local implementation plans by Wednesday, March 15, 2023. Equipped with guidance from AEMS on how to ensure the arts are elevated through this local implementation planning process, arts education advocates around the state reached out to their LEAs and gave recommendations for incorporating the arts.

Now that these plans are available, AEMS is reading through them to determine whether our recommendations have been implemented.


Join the AEMS' Slack Space to share your discoveries as you read through your LEA’s plan!

Using the list below, you can read through your LEA’s plan to see if they honored your advocacy for the arts!

Here are AEMS’s recommendations to cross-reference with the draft plan.


Advocacy works! With the help of advocates like you, AEMS was able to make significant changes to incorporate arts education into the AIB's Comprehensive Implementation Plan!


Our work isn't done, though!


Here’s what’s coming ahead as we work on shifting through the LEA draft plans:

  • We will be sending out action alerts in April and May as we continue to sort through the LEA plans and formulate responses to LEAs that have not made a clear commitment to the arts in their plans.

  •  Final LEA plans are due in June, and these implementation plans through June 30, 2024; there will be another round of plans due in March 2024 for School Years 2025-2027- we’ll be keeping an eye out for those as well.

Implementation Coordinator(s)
Local Blueprint Page
Somerset County
Linda Johnson, Jill Holland
Worcester County
Natalie Bennett
Wicomico County
Micah Stauffer
Washington County
Dr. Kara Burhans
Talbot County
Dr. Helga Einhorn
St. Mary's County
Dr. Jeffrey Maher, Sarah Lorek
Queen Anne's County
Dr. Matthew Kibler
Prince George's County
Dr. Kara Libby
Montgomery County
Janine Bacquie
Kent County
Dr. Karen Couch, Pat Merritt, Tom Porter
Howard County
Tim Guy
Harford County
Katie Ridgway
Garrett County
Dr. Nicole Miller
Frederick County
Dr. Sarah Sirgo
Dorchester County
Tim Brooke, Regina Teat
Charles County
Christina Miller
Cecil County
Wes Zimmerman, Megan Frunzi
Carroll County
Angie McCauslin, Jon O'Neal
Caroline County
Dr. Tara Downes
Calvert County
Anthony Navarro, Joe Sampson
Baltimore County
Dr. Melissa Whisted
Baltimore City
Sandi Jacobs, Melissa Broome
Anne Arundel County
Dr. Shannon Pugh
Allegany County
Wendy Main
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