Community Survey Now Open for New Police Chief Search
Dear Prince Georgians:
As we begin our national search for a new Chief of Police, we want to hear from you regarding what you would like to see in our next Chief. Last week we announced that we would send out a community survey to gather feedback, and that survey is now available. You can access it online here (en español aquí).
This short survey is one of a few ways we will be reaching out in the coming weeks to give you an opportunity to provide your thoughts and feedback. We are all in this together and I hope that you will take a few minutes to complete this survey. All results must be submitted by Monday, August 17.
In addition, I want to address the recent decision by Dr. Goldson to implement a distance learning model this fall for Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS). If you missed Dr. Goldson’s announcement yesterday, you can find the most current information and updates on the PGCPS reopening page.
I know that this was a difficult, but thoughtful and collaborative process that led Dr. Goldson to make the determination that our Prince George’s County Public School students would begin the 2020-2021 school year in a distance learning posture. I am very concerned about the achievement gap, which has the opportunity to widen when our students are not in the classroom. I am also acutely aware that not every child has a parent, guardian or caregiver at home who has the resources and time to assist their student as they distance learn.
While we have those concerns, we are also concerned for the safety and well-being of our students, their parents and grandparents, our teachers, staff and administrators. We know that, while as a community we have done a tremendous job of slowing the spread of this virus and flattening the curve, COVID-19 is still very much with us. It is absolutely critical that we take the necessary steps to preserve life, and while I very much want for our students to have the opportunity to learn in the classroom this fall, the repercussions of placing our students, families and teachers at risk could have far reaching consequences.
Due to our concern about the potential widening of the achievement gap, my office has supported several summer enrichment programs that are providing young people opportunities to stay engaged over the summer. We allocated funding to support the PGCPS/Higher Achievement Virtual Summer Program for rising 8th grade students at the following schools: Martin Luther King Middle, Benjamin Stoddert Middle, Isaac Gourdine Middle, and Walker Mill Middle.
This four-week academic enrichment program started on July 13. Students will participate in two virtual sessions per week – one 75-minute session in math, one 75-minute session in English language arts – with live instruction from a trained Higher Achievement staff member. Participating students receive an interactive experience that includes: online games, academic skill building, academic content linked to current events such as the Black Lives Matter movement, individualized small group instruction, and an opportunity to engage with peers from their school in a supportive environment.
In addition, we partnered with the Prince George’s County Memorial Library System (PGCMLS) to provide free online tutoring in the areas of language arts, math, ACT/SAT prep, as well as other resources to assist students over the summer break and as schools resume distance learning in the fall. The resources can be located on the PGCMLS website here, under the Activities and Educational Resources tab.
We also announced that our 2020 Youth@Work/Summer Youth Enrichment Program (SYEP), initially cancelled due to the pandemic, is now providing a number of paid virtual learning opportunities and limited in-person employment opportunities for young people ages 14-22. Applicants who applied earlier this year were given potential offers in a variety of programs. More information about the structure of this summer’s program can be found on the SYEP website.
Finally, I want to remind you about tomorrow’s distribution locations for our Stand Up & Deliver program. Through our partnership with the Capital Area Food Bank and the Prince George’s County Council, we will distribute groceries to go on Friday, July 17 at 12:30 PM at five locations across the County: Creative Suitland in Suitland, Ebenezer A.M.E. Church in Fort Washington, St. Margaret of Scotland Catholic Church in Capitol Heights, Turner A.M.E. Church in Hyattsville, and Walker Mill Baptist Church in Capitol Heights. Additional food distribution locations can be found on our website by clicking here.
Thank you, Prince Georgians, for your continued engagement. We will continue to provide you the latest updates, information and resources as we navigate these unprecedented times together.
Yours in service,
Prince George’s County Executive