Southwest Partnership

Education and Workforce Development Committee

1401 Hollins St.

August 20th, 2015



Jane Buccheri

Ellen Craven

Mary Gunning

Ivan Leshinsky

Joanne Nathans

Lou Packett

Lisa Rawlings

Ashley Sampson

Elizabeth Weber


Old Business/Updates


Organizing around schools: SWP staff met with the principals of the SWP area schools this summer and found that there were some common issues across all the schools including resource teachers, after school programs, and small grants for resources and supplies.


The Hollins Roundhouse neighborhood association is discussing working with James McHenry Elementary Middle School. The principal has asked the Community Association to adopt a grade. the kindergarten, for a year (which will cost about $800). Adopting the grade will ensure that the teacher has enough money to make copies and provide supplies. The grade adoption could potentially be a good pilot for the school and for the neighborhoods.


There may need to be a new leader for this workgroup–Lisa will follow up with Abigail and Brian, who were taking the lead, to see if they are still available.


Joanne asked about whether uniforms and access to them was raised as an issue–all the schools have uniforms but access wasn’t mentioned as an issue by the principals. Joanne also suggested contacting the principal at Tench Tilghman, as they have been quite successful in attracting outside resources to the school.


Attracting access to existing resources: the Committee, along with the Community Action Network and the UMB OCE have been putting on a series of Community Resource Workfshops. There were about a dozen people at the last one, on Community Funding, and most of the attendees were not not regularly involved in the Southwest Partnership. The next workshop will be on August 26th from 5-7pm and will provide information about expungement. The final workshop will be a Workforce Program Open House on September 23rd from 5-7pm. The programs currently planning on attending are Clay Pots, Center for Urban Families, CEASE, the MOED Employment Connection Center, the Caroline Center, Goodwill, and Paul’s Place. Our Daily Bread may also attend, and Lisa will invite Jumpstart. Lisa is also looking for program graduates who are able to speak at the event.


Joanne suggested that Baltimore Neighborhoods could be a potential speaker at a workshop–they do work around fair housing. That would be a topic for the Housing Committee to coordinate, but Lisa will suggest that the other Committee Chairs consider holding workshops at the next Committee Chairs meeting. Joanne also suggested SEED CO and someone from Legal Aid as possible workshop speakers.


At the September and August workshops attendees will be asked to select other workshops that they might be interested in attending.


Increasing Understanding of Background Checks: Lisa met Caryn Aslan, from JOTF, and referred her to Deirde and Jo Ann Williams. Jo Ann suggested offering the anchor institutions onsite training on how to read background at the anchor institutions. They are hoping to be able to offer them as brown bag seminars and a professional to professional conversation. Joanne suggested that someone from the Homeless Persons Representation Project could also be a possible speaker.


Workforce Needs Assessment: The needs assessment is moving along, the team is in the process of surveying 15 or 16 companies in the Carroll Camden Industrial Area. They are working in pairs and are just beginning the process. They will know a lot more and will have gotten back some information by October.


Committee Leadership: Lisa is going back to school and thought that she would no longer be able to Chair the Committee, however, she will be able to for this semester. The Committee should still think about identifying members and members of the community who would be interested in leading the Committee–it is a great opportunity to develop leadership.


New Business

At a previous meeting Cross St. Partners was invited to come and talk about ideas that they had for the James McHenry Rec. Center. Jane Buccheri is at the meeting to talk about what the James McHenry Rec Center workgroup did last year, and what could be built on it.

Jane: The Rec Center is not open for the majority of the students at James McHenry–the youngest age that there is programming for is 13. The group last year started to meet and look at what types of programming could fit there. However, the project slowed down a little and needs to begin again with the new principal and Rec Center staff. Were looking at tutoring, physical activities. Jane asked the community member who was in charge if she would mind having it being taken over by the SWP Education and Workforce Development Committee, and she did not Jane’s next steps is to meet with the Rec Center Director and the Principal–the Director is interested in expanding programming but doesn’t expect that funding will come from Rec and Parks.


Lisa shared information about the 29th St. Center and asked any of the Committee members who were interested to contact Jane.


Ashley: Works for Cross St Partners who are developing the Lion Brothers building which is across the street from the James McHenry Rec Center, which sparked their interest in expanding programming at the Rec Center. Has taken a tour–the gym and the weight room are the most popular activities. The Rec Center has no relationship with the school currently and is trying to bring in new programming. The Rec Center is quite large and includes a multipurpose room and a craft room as well as the weight room in the gym.

Andrew Coy at the Digital Harbor Foundation has a Rec to Tech Center in Federal Hill and is creating a plan to enable communities to build their own Rec to Tech Center. Cross St. Partners’ role could be to connect the committee with funding opportunities and resources as well as with TechShop, the MakerSpace going into the Lion Brother’s Building). TechShop is still looking for community partners for a grant to supply scholarships for memberships.


Lisa–the most important element of the Rec Center project is to build on what the community has expressed about what they want in there. The Committee will let the SWP and the neighborhood associations know that they are working on the Rec Center Project.


Next Meeting will be October 1st from 6:30-8pm at Carter Memorial Church’s Conference Center at 848 Hollins Street.


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