Brooke and her husband Eben are committed to raising their family in Baltimore and sending their son to Baltimore City public schools (Teddy will enroll in Kindergarten at Hampstead Hill Academy in fall 2018!). Brooke understands the challenges that Baltimore parents face and believes that safe, quality public schools are the foundation for attracting and keeping families in the City.
Brooke is dedicated to making sure that every public school in the district has the highest quality teachers and principals, and provides a safe learning environment for every student.
As a member of the Appropriations Committee, Brooke has been a leader on funding for City Schools from the first day of her term in 2015. She led passage of a bill to provide free public transit to City students on MTA busses, and was part of a small team that worked to ensure that the State would help City Schools dig out of a large deficit in the 2017 session. During the 2018 session, she is again part of a core group working to ensure that the state provides adequate capital resources to City schools to provide high quality learning environments for all kids.
Brooke also regularly communicates with the principals and teachers in her district. For instance, Brooke partnered with the principal at Maree Farring Elementary/Middle School in Brooklyn to advocate for additional space for students in this overcrowded and growing school. She worked with North Avenue and the Department of Housing and Community Development to help secure funding for the purchase of the building next to the school to be renovated and used as additional classroom and community space. But for her efforts, this opportunity would have been lost.
Across the district, Locust Point parents and residents reached out to Brooke in summer 2015 about their desire for a new library at FSK Elementary/Middle School in Locust Point. Brooke worked to ensure that QZAB funding from the federal government was secured by the state and targeted at FSK so that the school could capitalize on a grant program with the Weinberg Foundation to build new libraries. She joined students and parents at the ribbon cutting of this new, beautiful library in October 2017.
Brooke also understands the challenges that parents face in securing high-quality, affordable child care. She will continue working with parents, regulators, and City officials to (1) increase Child Care Subsidy payments for working families (currently many Maryland families are on a waiting list to receive help), and (2) identify and eliminate barriers to starting new child care facilities in Baltimore and around the State. Creating high-quality child-care provides jobs, starts our children on a solid path from their first days, and enables parents to return to the workforce confident that their children are being cared for. It must be a priority for Maryland, and Brooke will fight to keep attention focused on this critical need.