‘Blueprint’ Plan Worries Some

by Seph Fischer ’25

In February of 2021, Maryland’s General Assembly passed the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future, overriding a veto from Governor Larry Hogan. The law, a set of sweeping education reforms which, among other goals, attempts to institute a universal preschool program in all counties, increases state funding for education by $3.8 billion each year, and it requires individual counties to contribute $700 million more towards education each year than they otherwise would have. While supporters of the law maintain that the Blueprint is a necessary step, others insist that the law is fiscally irresponsible.

Funds for the Blueprint will run out in 2026, meaning that Maryland will have to find some other way to fund the program starting in 2027, raising concern from some on the financial sustainability of Maryland’s budget. Individual counties have also raised issues with the plan, namely its inflexibility and the budgetary constraints it would place on them. Harford County Executive Bob Cassilly described the Blueprint funding mandate as “unrealistic,” while St. Mary’s County Public School System officials complained that Blueprint funding, which is tied to specific programs, “requires the elimination of other programs and supports.” Others remain confident in the program’s ability to be effectively implemented.

While the five pillars of the Blueprint plan — increasing funding for early childhood education, high quality and “diverse” teachers, college and career readiness pathways, increasing funding for extracurricular programs, and ensuring effective implementation of these through a governance board — project confidence in the goals of the program, it is unclear whether the amount of funds the Blueprint requires is sustainable. The Blueprint’s long rollout period — until 2032 — means it remains to be seen how successful its implementation will be.