Blueprint Coordinator Appointed

SALISBURY – Wicomico County Public Schools’ Dr. Rick Briggs will serve as Blueprint implementation coordinator following last month’s appointment by the county council.

Briggs, the school system’s chief academic officer, will be responsible for advancing local changes outlined in Blueprint for Maryland’s Future.

“If appointed here, Dr. Briggs will be leading our efforts as we move forward with Blueprint legislation over the next 10 years for our school system and the five pillars that we know will be part of the work we’ll be doing in the school system,” Superintendent Dr. Micah Stauffer told county leaders last month. “Those pillars are college and career readiness, advancing early childhood education, making sure our resources are equitably distributed among all our schools, and ensuring we have a high-performing workforce, as well as accountability.”

In 2020, the Maryland General Assembly passed landmark legislation with the intent of improving and enhancing the quality of education in Maryland’s public schools. Simply put, Blueprint for Maryland’s Future contains policy and funding recommendations from the Kirwin Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education and paves the way for a multi-billion-dollar investment in the coming decade.

The Blueprint legislation also requires the governing body of each county and local school board to appoint a coordinator that would ensure Blueprint’s implementation by all government units operating in the county. To that end, Stauffer came before the council last week seeking approval for Briggs’ appointment to the role.

“As far as the role of this position, I know the Blueprint coordinator is not only for the Wicomico County Board of Education, but for Wicomico County as a whole …,” he said. “My thought is that this position should make regular updates to not only our board of education and our community, but also the council as a whole.”

When asked about the state’s Accountability and Implementation Board, Stauffer said members were working to create an implementation plan.

“They will be creating an implementation plan template, which will then go to all of the local school districts around Maryland,” he explained. “We’ll be using this template this fall and into the winter…”

After further discussion, the council voted 6-0, with Councilman Ernie Davis absent, to approve Briggs’ appointment.

About The Author: Bethany Hooper

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Bethany Hooper has been with The Dispatch since 2016. She currently covers various general stories. Hooper graduated from Stephen Decatur High School in 2012 and the University of Maryland in 2016, where she completed double majors in journalism and economics.