Mark G. Smith, Coordinator of Special Programs
St. Mary's County Public Schools
Phone: 301-475-0242, ext. 110
Special Programs, from the St. Mary's County Public Schools' Department College and Career Readiness, provide opportunities for students to grow and develop beyond what the regular school day offers. Programs focus on closing the achievement gap among student groups including low income, first-generation college, minority, and students who need extra time or support.
- Finding opportunities, planning and writing grant proposals for At-Risk Students/Closing the Achievment Gap
- Start up, supervision, program management, and fiscal management of each funded program
- Business partnerships for assisting at-risk students/closing the achievement gap
- 21st Century Community Learning Centers After School Program (7 sites)
- Approximately 1200 students currently served after school
- Approximately 50,000 snacks served after school, per year.
- 26 buses per day taking students home from after school programs.
- Budget from grant funds this year is approx. $1,000,000 plus additional in-kind contributions from partners
- Over 100 Staff members on payroll, primarily SMCPS Staff in extra pay for extra duty positions
- 10 active partnerships
List of Programs:
Dream Team 21st Century Community Learning Center After School Program
At G.W. Carver Elementary, Lexington Park Elementary, and Spring Ridge Middle schools and the St. Mary's County Recreations and Parks Carver Rec Center now in its second year. Funded by a three year, $375,000 per year grant from the Maryland State Department of Education and the Federal 21st Century program that serves 300 students. The Boys and Girls Clubs of Southern Maryland operates the school-based programs together with SMCPS, five days per week during the school year. See a brief promotional video about this program at SRMS. St. Mary's County Department of Recreation and Parks operates the Carver Recreation Center site four days per week.
Bright Futures 21st Century After School Program
At Green Holly Elementary, Park Hall Elementary and Great Mills High School. The elementary programs are jointly operated by the Boys and Girls Clubs and SMCPS, while SMCPS is entirely responsible for the high school program.
- Funding - The two 21st Century Programs are funded by grants from the Maryland State Department of Education's 21st Century Community Learning Center Program. In addition, for FY 2011, the Board of County Commissioners provides $100,000 to SMCPS partner, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Southern Maryland to support this program and the partnership.
- Partners - Kiwanis of St. Mary's County, 4-H, Cooperative Extension of St. Mary's County, St. Mary's College of Maryland, The Local Management Board of St. Mary's County, St. Mary's County Libraries, Pax River Naval Air Station. Booz Allen Hamilton is a major partner providing support by its employees and a generous financial contribution.
- Local Management Board After School Programs - in 2010-2011 this supports after school programs at Esperanza Middle, Dynard Elementary, Greenview Knolls Elementary, and Great Mills High schools.
St. Mary's County College Access Program (SMC CAP)
Southern Maryland has an undersupply of workers with college degrees. To address this need, and to help all students achieve at high levels, SMC CAP places advisors in the three SMCPS comprehensive high schools to work with students who will be first-generation college students as the target audience, and any student who requests assistance as the additional population. The program delivers a weekly curriculum and support that prepares juniors and seniors for successfully navigating the road that leads to higher education. Juniors and Seniors go to the Career Centers at their school during lunch to meet with the Post Secondary Advisors, who are Robin Willis at Great Mills High School, Betsy Toombs at Leonardtown HIgh School, and Kerry Nantz at Chopticon HIgh School. The two-year-long, weekly curriculum is prepared by consultant, Susan Bisson.
Employees of Booz Allen Hamilton, a local contractor, serve as ambassadors at each high school. The ambassadors provide support for the program by identifying speakers, attending college visits, mentoring students and providing resources for the program. Booz Allen Hamilton also provides generous financial support to CAP.
Partnership with BECA (the Business, Education and Community Alliance)
This organization, celebrating 22 years of service to the community, has created a one-stop website with information about colleges (www.smcbeca.org) and scholarships, a Common Application so students can apply for over 25 local scholarships worth over $600,000 with one single application. Don't miss the BECA Scholarship Fair this February 2, 2011, at the Dr. James A. Forrest Career and Technology Center. You will meet scholarship providers and learn how the St. Mary's Common Scholarship Application works.
Chess is a wonderful opportunity for students to learn to make plans, evaluate strategies and choose options. Plus, it's great fun. In St. Mary's County Public Schools, students have an opportunity to learn and further develop chess skills because of a grant from Maryland State Department of Education, the Academic Chess in Maryland Schools program. Schools with Chess this year are GW Carver, Lexington Park, Park Hall, Green Holly, Benjamin Banneker, and Leonardtown Elementary Schools, the Chesapeake Charter School, and Spring Ridge Middle School.
FLOW Mentoring Program
This program provides an intensive mentoring program in every elementary,middle, and high school in St. Mary's County. See the FLOW link on the left for more information.