As part of our ongoing conversations about public education on the Mid-Shore, we sat down with Queen Anne’s County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Patricia Saelens, last month for an update of that county’s challenges and opportunities as one of the most robust public school systems in the state of Maryland.
One example of this distinction was the news this week that U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona recognized Church Hill Elementary School and Matapeake Elementary School as National Blue Ribbon Schools for 2023. Those two schools beat out more than 9,000 schools nationwide to make that list.
That kind of recognition is common for QAC schools. Year after year, the school district continues outperforming other schools on both the Eastern and Western Shore.
And yet, as Dr. Saelens notes in our Spy interview, it’s not always peachy even in QAC. After taking the job in the middle of the COVID crisis, which Saelens considers the most challenging years of her professional life, she and her peers are still having to find their way in negotiating the unanticipated challenges that have come with the implication of the state’s Blueprint for Maryland’s Future. In our chat, the superintendent highlights the positives and negatives of the multi-billion dollar effort to improve public education, including the funding formula and its impact on county budgeting.
This video is approximately ten minutes in length.