2 programs to help students avoid dropping out of school are honored

Two Baltimore County programs that help students stay in school have won national and state awards.

* The Summer Enrichment Camp for ninth-graders at risk of dropping out received the 1993 Job Training Partnership Act Presidential Award during ceremonies yesterday in Washington. Baltimore County schools officials and some of the program's students accepted the award from Secretary of Labor Robert B. Reich.


* The Infant/Toddler Program, a day care center for the children of students at Kenwood High School, was a winner of the Fifth Annual Child Care Challenge Award from the Women Legislators of Maryland and the Maryland Chamber of Commerce. That award will be presented Nov. 17 in Annapolis.

Thirty students from the eastern part of the county attended the summer enrichment camp, a joint venture of the schools, Office of Employment and Training and Department of Community Development.


For six weeks, the youngsters dabbled in video production, cosmetology, computer technology and carpentry at the Carver Center for Arts and Technology in Towson. They also took field trips and brushed up on writing and math in unconventional ways -- and they were paid $4.25 an hour for their efforts.

Youngsters selected had problems in middle school that made them potential high school dropouts, said Kevin Wagman, a Baltimore County teacher and the program's director. The program taught them about the world of work and the link between school and work.

The Baltimore County enrichment program is one of 20 programs nationwide chosen for the award.

The Kenwood center opened in January as the county's first day care center for students' children. It is caring for 12 youngsters under 18 months old and by December will be able to accommodate six more babies, said Jeanne Page, executive director of the Open Door, the child care agency that operates the center.

"This award recognizes the social impact of the program," she said.

Last year, 80 percent of the mothers of children in the center graduated from Kenwood. Nationally, about 20 percent of teen mothers finish high school, she said.

The Open Door works with Towson State University, the school department, the county government, the county Chamber of Commerce and Franklin Square Hospital to operate the center.

The Lawrence G. Paquin School for Expectant Teen-age Mothers in Baltimore and the YMCA of Greater Baltimore in Towson also received the child care award.