Bolton Hill schools hold their own in ratings while others are downgraded

Students at Midtown Academy

All three public schools located in Bolton Hill maintained their quality levels in a state rating system updated this month for the first time since 2019.

Mt. Royal Elementary and Middle School and Midtown Academy, a public charter, kept their three-star status while Eutaw-Marshburn Elementary came in, as before, with two stars.

This state-issued “report card” is designed to give families a simple guide to the quality of a school. It was first developed in 2017 and first used in 2018 to rank each school in Maryland. Some educators complain that it is simplistic and fails to properly acknowledge demographics and other variables in the schools. The ratings were not issued during the three years when the COVID pandemic wreaked havoc on school participation and classroom standards.

Schools are ranked on a one-to-five-star basis based on student performance on Maryland Comprehensive Assessment Program tests, access to a well-rounded curriculum, graduation rates, English learner proficiency, attendance and other criteria. Only one Baltimore city institution, the high school Baltimore School for the Arts, scored five stars.

A quarter of Baltimore County schools and three quarters of Baltimore City schools received one or two stars, which is considered below average. Eutaw-Marshburn is slated to close next year. Statewide, 62.5% had the same star ratings as 2019, according to the state. Of those that changed, 139 schools gained a star while 336 schools lost a star. Individual school ratings can be found here.