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Edmondson Westside High fighting to keep trade programs

Posted at 9:07 PM, Jan 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-28 23:14:53-05

BALTIMORE — Edmondson Westside High School has been a staple for kids looking for a path to success.

The trade school gives kids a chance to thrive without having to go the traditional college route.

The alumni association for the school is fighting to keep some of the programs from being cut

Baltimore City schools is considering cutting 10 programs.

The alumni association said this would be devastating to the students and staff.

Based in the West side of Baltimore City, Edmondson Westside High School is one of 3 public trade schools in Baltimore City.

Rome Carrol is the president of the alumni association.

“Our children deserve trades especially in the communities we live and reside in,” Carrol said. “Having a skill set to build upon and go into a workplace and practice those skills and get paid for those skills. Or also have entrepreneurship skills and start your own business is an extra additive plus.”

The programs on the chopping block are: Accounting, Business Administrative Services, Banking, Culinary, CISCO Networking Pathway, PLTW Technology and Carpentry.

They’ve created an online petition and are asking people to send a letter to BCPS and complete an online survey.

“Edmondson is the only school with a two building campus that is funded for one building,” Carrol said. “I think instead of taking the programs away we should look at how we can build those programs. So we can help make them stronger and build partnerships and with outside businesses and community members.”

Carroll said the list of success stories is too long and too important to stop growing.

“It was helpful for me because I got into the IT world and I got to be able to utilize my skills and gain some skills. I was able to put money in my pocket without having to go to the streets. I think that’s a big piece because a lot of our kids and our youth they don’t necessarily want to be out in the street they just want to make some money for themselves and to feed their families as well.”

A bit of good news the school district pushed a vote on this back to March.

In the meantime, they will be considering testimony from community members and holding meetings to further discuss the issue.