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County government, school system partner to address achievement gap

The school system and County Executive Steuart Pittman have come together to create a partnership that will address the achievement gap.

The Joint Initiative to Eliminate the Achievement Gap will tackle the question of why is there a gap between student groups and will work with students, parents, community members and county members to come up with recommendations, according to a press release.

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“There are many parts of this issue that we have been attacking in our schools through a variety of departments,” Superintendent George Arlotto said.

“We must – and we will – continue that work. There are, however, factors outside of our schools and our school system that play a large part in the gaps. We are thrilled that County Executive Pittman recognizes that and is willing to invest time and resources in this critical conversation.”

This initiative is modeled similarly to the mental health taskforce that will hold its first meeting this Friday.

“Closing the achievement gap, particularly between white and African-American students, is a longstanding goal that we have failed to achieve despite ongoing efforts by our school system, our NAACP, and community leaders,” Pittman said.

“Giving up is not an option. Instead, we are bringing together the best minds in the field, from both education and community, to identify and initiate updated strategies.”

The first meeting will be on September 23 at Arundel High School at 6:30 p.m.

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