Baltimore City Public Schools creating new vision for career readiness

School/Business Partnership

Baltimore City Public Schools is creating a new vision for career readiness for city students, including participation in Apprenticeship Maryland, a youth apprenticeship program for high school students. The team in charge of these efforts, headed by Kumasi Vines, Director of Career Readiness spoke to GBC members at a recent Education and Workforce Committee meeting outlining how the system is preparing students for careers and how businesses can partner in these efforts.

Four career readiness focus areas:

  • Career Readiness for all students
  • Career and Technical Education (CTE) – Provide students the opportunity to earn industry recognized credentials in their pathway of choice upon completion of high school
  • Work Based Learning – Help students identify their career interests through career awareness and exploration
  • Connections to Work – Leverage partnerships to help students go into career-track jobs in growing industries, on the path to a family-supporting wage

City Schools’ CTE programs are currently being revamped to ensure that available programs prioritize preparing students for living wage, in-demand occupations consistent with student demand and are more accessible to diverse student populations. To learn more about the changes to City Schools’ CTE programs, click here.

One of the new initiatives being spearheaded by the Work-Based Learning team is local implementation of Apprenticeship Maryland (AMP), which is a unique opportunity to train, influence and shape high school students into top-performing employees. Employers with opportunities in in demand industries such as manufacturing, science, technology, engineering and math can apply to become Eligible Employers. The employer will then hire Apprenticeship Maryland participants for an “earn and learn” opportunity, with the following requirements:

  • 450 Paid Hours (125 must be instructional hours) – 450 hours must be completed in 14 months prior to students’ graduation
  • Instruction can take place at the employment site, community college or local high school as part of the CTE program
  • 450 hours can be completed outside of traditional school hours.  This includes summers, weekends, spring break, evening, etc.

In addition to hosting an apprentice, there are numerous opportunities to partner in career readiness activities with Baltimore City Public Schools. Some of the needs are guest speakers, mentors, hosting workplace tours and providing supplies. For more information on how to assist city students with Work Based Learning Experiences and Apprenticeship Maryland, go here.

These opportunities are another way for local businesses to support quality educational opportunities for Baltimore City School System students. For more information about creating a sustainable school/business partnership, see the GBC’s Creating a Successful School/Business Partnership: A Guide for Schools and Businesses.