COVID-19 Guidance, Resources and Updates for Maryland Schools and Communities Recovery. Resilience. Reopening Maryland Schools.

The Maryland State Department of Education and multiple State agencies are collaborating on and are committed to the health and safety of students and staff in the school setting. Maryland Together: Maryland's Recovery Plan for Education sets the framework to safely return schools to in-person instruction, along with guidance from the Maryland Department of Health and other partners. Schools across the State have been opening safely and effectively; all local school systems have been directed to open for in-person instruction by March 1, 2020.

Current Status of School SystemsLink to Word document

For more information about Education and COVID-19:

February Proclamations

Black History Month ProclamationPDF document link
CTE Month Month ProclamationPDF document link
CTE Education That Works (video)
Gifted and Talented Education Month ProclamationPDF document link

Invitation to provide comment/input:

Maryland Together: Maryland's Recovery Plan for EducationMSDE welcomes public comments on the Updated Maryland Together: Maryland's Recovery Plan for Education

Please email comments to: until further notice. Comments will be reviewed on a continuous basis.

Updates from the State Superintendent

Remarks by
State Superintendent Karen B. Salmon, Ph.D.   
February 23, 2021

Thank you, President Crawford.  I appreciate the opportunity to update the Board on the reopening plans of our local school systems for in person instruction for all students.

As you know after the Governor and I announced the call for schools to return to in person learning by March 1st, MSDE asked local Superintendents to send us their timelines for returning students.  I am pleased to report that 18 of our 24 school systems are providing an opportunity for in-person instruction for at least two days per week by the end of March for each grade level in elementary, middle and high schools.
Four local school systems are not opening for all grade levels by the end of March: 
  • one system (Charles) has not announced any reopening dates 
  • one system (Baltimore City) is only opening for elementary – K-5 and grade 6, 9 
  • one system (Harford) is open for elementary K-5 for two days, but only 1 day for middle and high school students, and
  • one system (P.G.) has announced openings for the month of April

Specific information regarding each local school system’s return dates will be posted on the MSDE website following this presentation.

Congratulations to the following local school systems who are currently providing in-person instruction in a hybrid mode.  They include:
  • Carroll and Worcester who returned students in January
  • Calvert, Caroline, Cecil, Dorchester, Frederick, Queen Anne’s, St. Mary’s,
  • Somerset, Talbot, Washington and Wicomico
  • It should be noted that some of these systems were open in a hybrid fashion this Fall – for example, Kent County opened for Pre-K-5 and grades 6-8 in the Fall and in February brought back grades 9-12.

In guiding local school systems’ efforts to reopen safely, MSDE has redefined education by providing research-driven guidance, funding, personal protective equipment, a first-term school year 20-21 performance dashboard, learning-loss recovery strategies and in concert with the Maryland Department of Health initiated Covid-19 testing in schools to begin on March 1, 2021.

I want to take a moment to highlight the major initiatives spearheaded by MSDE during the last 11 months and also address future plans.

One of the first comprehensive guides of its kind in the country, Maryland Together: Maryland’s Recovery Plan for Education outlined 13 requirements for local school systems to address in their local reopening plans and introduced the concept of hybrid learning, as well as public health mitigation and social distancing practices necessary for reopening schools. 

In collaboration with the Maryland Department of Health, the Guidance for School Reopening,  features two educational design options to support the goal of quickly and safely restoring in-person learning for Maryland’s students, and prioritizes students who are most academically vulnerable. 

During the first days of the pandemic, MSDE directed the provision of emergency school meals to ensure students’ nutritional needs were met. MSDE is especially grateful for the work of food service professionals, who have provided more than 45 million emergency meals and continue to feed our students both in and outside of the school facilities.

In addition to the initial $400 million delivered by the Coronavirus Aid, Recovery, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, MSDE is providing another $780 Million in federal relief for school systems to address the effects of the pandemic. The $1.2 billion funding has been used for devices and connectivity, materials and supplies to reopen schools, and will support measures to combat learning loss with strategies such as intense tutoring.  MSDE has swiftly and effectively distributed these funds to local school systems. 

Survey: Strategies to Address Disrupted Learning
MSDE seeks your input regarding strategies to address disrupted learning as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. 
Please complete this short survey

$60 Million Pandemic Relief Grant Program for Child Care Providers

Through the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021, Maryland received additional federal funding to support child care for children and families. The Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) is establishing a $60 million grant program to support eligible child care programs throughout the state to help meet operating costs and address lost revenue.

This grant program is in addition to previous efforts to support child care providers, including grants to support reopening efforts, sanitization, and personal protective equipment, as well as the essential personnel child care program. 

The grant application will be available beginning February 16. In order to receive a grant, currently operating child care programs must complete the online application by March 3. Providers must note how they plan to use the funds and submit required data, including enrollment data, losses incurred, and how funds will be used. 

Licensed child care centers and registered family child care providers can learn more about the grant application and other COVID-19 child care information.

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For more information on human trafficking in Maryland click here.