Louis D’Ambrosio, a longtime Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) educator and principal at Berry Elementary School, was recently selected by Gov. Larry Hogan to serve on the Maryland Professional Standards and Teacher Education Board. He is the first CCPS educator to be chosen to serve a three-year term on the Board.
D’Ambrosio said he applied to serve on the Board to advocate for teachers. “I want to stay involved with the people who are involved in making decisions for education and teaching standards in Maryland,” he said.
D’Ambrosio’s appointment was made official last Thursday at the offices of the Clerk of the Circuit Court for Charles County, who administered the oath of office.
The Professional Standards and Teacher Education Board promotes quality education by establishing standards designed to ensure educational professional development includes high levels of knowledge and skills required to prepare all students for success. The governor appoints members to the Board and members serve three-year terms.
The Maryland General Assembly enacted legislation to create the Board in 1991 as an authority to develop rules and regulations for teacher certification and professional development requirements. D’Ambrosio will serve as one of 25 appointed members to the Board over the next three years.
Throughout his term, D’Ambrosio plans to influence the teacher certification process. “I want to be able to help influence the way the certification process is working. We are experiencing a teacher shortage, as are other states, but the qualifications for teachers should remain rigorous as they are tasked with helping children achieve success. I hope through my position that I can help to bring highly qualified teacher candidates to Maryland,” D’Ambrosio said.
This is not the first state-level educational experience for D’Ambrosio. He recently finished a term serving on the Maryland State Board of Education’s Task Force on Student Discipline Regulations. D’Ambrosio was part of a task force subcommittee charged with reviewing state and county discipline guidelines and data, school climate survey data, identifying problematic practices and drafting recommendations for change. The task force met several times this spring. D’Ambrosio was part of the subcommittee who presented a final report and recommendations to the Maryland Board of Education in June.
D’Ambrosio found out about the Professional Standards Board through his role with the Maryland Association of Elementary School Principals (MAESP). He joined MAESP and became the Charles County representative in 2007. He served as MAESP president last school year and helped to lead more than 900 members from each of the 24 school systems in Maryland. D’Ambrosio is the first principal from CCPS to serve as MAESP president.
A strong supporter of public education, D’Ambrosio has also been invited to speak at several conferences and workshops. Next month he will attend the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education National School Leadership Summit. The summit will focus on equity-based and culturally responsive teaching and learning environments, cultivating a community of care and support for students, and engaging families as partners in achieving school goals.
In 2018, D’Ambrosio was part of a panel of school leaders that testified during an event on Capitol Hill about Title II funding under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The funding supports school leaders with professional development opportunities to support student needs. The event was co-sponsored by AFSA, the National Association of Secondary School Principals and the National Association of Elementary School Principals.
D’Ambrosio said he enjoys serving in roles in which he can advocate for educators. “I will take advantage of any opportunity to support teachers and educators, and enhance what we do in order to support student success,” D’Ambrosio said.
Charles County Public Schools provides 27,400 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 37 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.
The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Kathy Kiessling, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Nikial Majors, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.