CHPSPO Meeting Notes – July 17, 2012

Capitol Hill Public Schools Parent Organization

Maury Elementary, 1250 Constitution Ave., NE, Library

July 17, 2012 6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.


1. DCPS Library Funding Follow up, Suzanne Wells

  • June 15, July 4, and July 11 Bake Sales were successful in generating awareness (media, Washington DC Teacher’s Union, DC Council, general public)
  • CHPSPO and ‘in ward parents’ have had a presence at all ‘State of the Schools meetings (all Wards) and have raised the libraries issue in all meetings.
  • CHPSPO requested meeting to present check to Kaya Henderson of $ raised by bake sales – were instructed by DCPS to submit online
  • CHPSPO requested meeting with DCPS (Kaya Henderson) to discuss libraries, and were told because of her busy schedule she could not meet with us. Follow up requests stressing the need for a thoughtful discussion with DCPS on the library issue has gotten no response


  • Money is there (example: prove what’s possible grants), but “cuts” are really about choices

Next Steps:

  • Reach out to Deputy Mayor Wright, since DCPS is not responsive


2. What does vertical and horizontal integration mean to us? (Brainstorm)

  • Much of this was captured in Ward 6 Middle School Plan (math, languages, IB to feed from feeder ES to MS, then from MS to Eastern)
  • In our current feeder pattern, principals don’ t currently have to talk to each other; principals operate their schools as separate “islands”
  • 2-3 languages should be offered at middle schools (and the elementary schools that feed into them should offer at least one of those languages). Currently, misaligned; JO Wilson offers award winning French, but Stuart Hobson (it’s feeder MS) offers Spanish…
  • Math: Algebra for 7th graders; plan to get ES kids up to speed so they are prepared for Algebra. What happened to summer bridge programs for rising 6th graders?
  • Robotics programs across all feeder schools; similar sports/other programs that can be offered across all schools, and coordinated so schools can share resource
  • International Baccalaureate
  • Lucy Kulkins writing workshops
  • Responsive classroom

Next steps:

  • Draft a white paper (Suzanne Wells to kick off) on what we think should be expectation for Eastern feeder pattern and what needs to happen to make these expectations possible; gather community input (via voting/survey); outlines responsibilities (parents, principals, students, DCPS)
  • Follow up w/ DCPS re: Ward 6 MS plan implementation point person (raised again at State of Schools and still no follow up)
  • Follow up on communications among principals that cut through current ‘clusters’ model – need teachers, principals to communicate with each other and align. Currently, many feeder schools do not coincide with clusters, so principals (and staff) have no incentives to talk to each other.


Upcoming Events:

  • August 21, Next CHPSPO Meeting:
  • August 25, School Beautification Day
  • October 3, Walk-to-School Day – NEED COORDINATORS!!! Contact George Blackmon ( if you can coordinate on behalf of your school


Visit CHPSPO on the web at

CHPSPO Meeting Notes – June 19, 2012

Capitol Hill Public Schools Parent Organization

Tyler Elementary School Library

June 19, 2012

6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.



  1. DCPS Library Funding Followup, Peter MacPherson
    • Ludlow-Taylor meeting with DCPS on Wednesday, June 20, 2012.  Request is to move librarians out of flexible categoryto core staff; , check if Mary Levy and DCPS are willing to meet to discuss discrepancies in budget; ask about ‘in-class’ libraries and what that looks like on the ground; Peter MacPherson and Robert Zarr to attend June 20 meeting.
    • Bake Sales: Add petition to sales; July 4 @ Barrack’s Row; July 11 @ Wilson Building (organized by Ludlow Taylor); look for other wards to support other bake sales; Future bake sales: have other wards host, request mtg w/ Kaya Henderson to deliver donations check.
    • Enjoy Reading (, (Ali Hoffman): Stanton Elementary in Ward 8; at schools 2 days/week
    • Children’s Budget report ( Points raised: How are the Mary Levy report and DC budget discrepancies addressed? Request granularity around DCPS budget vis a vis libraries; Why is DC Parks and Rec not represented if they are now running aftercare in many schools? TAKE QUESTIONNAIRE ONLINE:
    • Grade DC ( ( Raise that DCPS should be included in agencies to be graded and raise library issue here, too.


  1. Ward 6 State of the Schools Followup, All
    • What are DCPS’ next steps? Suzanne to draft letter back w/ key points we heard and want follow up (to be sent on behalf of CHPSPO).
      • Vertical and horizontal articulation: convene all principals w/in feeder pattern to discuss what this means
      • At young grades, start thinking of themselves as class of 2023; Introduce feeder-wide activities – Ex: robotics
      • Ward 6 MS Plan Liaison
      • Libraries
      • Ask to publish consolidated list of follow up items that were recorded in the meeting
      • School foods expectations
      • Afterschool programs
      • How can we hear from the kids, who no doubt have opinions re: librarian, food, aftercare? Video recorded interviews of children w/ their feedback on all of the above


  1. 4th of July Parade on Barrack’s Row. July 4 @ 10 AM.
    • Sign up your school at
    • Line up at 8th and I SE at 9:00 AM.
    • CHPSPO to participate. We love school libraries car. CHPSPO; bake sale, generate interest, petition, table… (Sandra has registered CHPSPO)
    • Walk with your school, then walk with CHPSPO!



Next CHPSPO Meeting:   July 17, 2012


Upcoming Events:

  •  July 4th Parade
  • July 11 Bake Sale at Wilson Building to Support Libraries

CHPSPO Meeting Notes – March 20, 2012

Dear Capitol Hill Public School Parent Organization members,


Middle Schools

At our CHPSPO meeting on Tuesday, we had very informative presentations from Principals Tynika Young, Dawn Clemens and Natalie Gordon. After our discussion, we decided to form two “thinking groups” to further explore how we can support our neighborhood middle schools. The two thinking groups are:

1. Outreach – the scope of this thinking group is to look at things like:

a. spreading the word about the good things going on at our neighborhood middle schools;

b. bringing together parents from the different elementary feeder schools, e.g., living room chats, etc.;

c. helping people understand what the IB teaching approach is and the progress Jefferson, Eliot-Hine and Eastern are making in becoming IB certified;

d. creating opportunities for families to visit the neighborhood middle schools, e.g., art festivals, Spring baseball games, etc.

Outreach thinking group members are: Joe Weedon (chair), Andrea Ryan, Isabella Harris, and Barbara Riehle

2. Out-of-school time/Partnerships – the scope of this thinking group is to look at things like:

a. what existing out-of-school time activities do the middle schools currently have such as clubs and sports;

b. what partnerships currently exist at the schools to support out-of-time activities;

c. what are the desires of the principals, teachers and students for after-school activities;

d. identify opportunities for establishing partnerships to support out-of-school activities.

Out-of-school time/Partnerships thinking group members are: Suzanne Wells (chair), Sandra Moscoso-Mills, Principal Dawn Clemens, and Julie Scofield

The thinking groups will report at the April CHPSPO meeting on their progress. If others would like to join the thinking groups, please contact the chairs of the thinking groups (Joe Weedon, for the Outreach thinking group and Suzanne Wells, for the Out-of-school time/Partnerships thinking group).


DCPS Libraries

At our meeting, we also agreed CHPSPO would submit testimony at the March 28 DCPS budget hearing and/or write a letter to Chancellor Henderson regarding the FY13 budget changes that move librarians into a flexible funding category, and that eliminate librarians from schools with enrollments less than 299. A draft of the testimony/letter will be circulated in the next couple of days.


Smithsonian Education Lab

Finally, we had a very informative presentation by Jeff Meade with the Smithsonian Education Lab. There are great opportunities for free teacher training through the Smithsonian Education Lab. If your school is interested in exploring partnering opportunities with the Smithsonian Education Lab, contact Jeff at

Suzanne Wells

CHPSPO Meeting Notes – February 21, 2012

Capitol Hill Public Schools Parent Organization

J.O. Wilson Elementary School

660 K Street, NE –Library, 2nd floor

February 21, 2012  6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.

1) Safe Routes to School, Jennifer Heffernan, District DOT

**Congratulations to Brent ES, as Feb 21 was the debut of the Brent Safety Patrols!

First Annual National Bike to School Day is on May 9, Wednesday.

 – Supported by DDoT (giveaways will be available to participating schools)

 – Soon, schools can register to participate via – (the site is currently being redesigned to provide more biking related material)

– Brainstormed around idea of having a pitstop at Lincoln Park, rather than a W2SD type of party. Plan to record the participants and recognize the schools who participate (maybe shout outs to the schools with most participants). Have multiple pit stops, as long as there are volunteers to ‘man’ them.

ACTION: Sandra M. to reach out to CHPSPO schools to see who is willing to volunteer to organize pit stops and where.

ABCs of Family Bicycling on Sat, April 21st, 11AM-2PM @ Logan parking lot (215 G St., NE) (rain date is following day).

 – Kiddical Mass

 – Families w/ experience biking will give demos, showing gear

 – Bike shops will show gear

 – Bicycle skills rodeo

 – Safety

 – Bicycle train training (teach skills re: riding in group safely), followed by group ride

 – ACTION: Jennifer H. to add to program – how to secure your bikes

ACTION: CHPSPO will get event into Hill Rag

Bike Racks and Safe Routes to Eliot Hine

 – Q: do all schools on Hill have full complement of bike racks? – ACTION: Jennifer to look into those bike racks installed in last year or so.

 – Q: Could DDOT look into Safe Routes to Eliot-Hine? ACTION: Jennifer to look into this – Suzanne to connect Jennifer w/ Eliot-Hine


 2)  Community Parade, Apollo:

 – Parade likely 11AM-12PM, in April or May

 – To include schools, clubs, teams, music

 – ACTION: CHPSPO to reach out to Capitol Hill Classic and Laps for Lincoln organizers; Apollo to flesh out theme/focus of parade

 3) Mindful Parenting Workshops, Steven Seiden

 – Therapist-led sharing environment w/in parents to feel like we can problem-solve issues and have support and connect

– Eventually, peer-led

– Goal is to make this a DCPS parent-engagement program

– Opening up this opportunity to all Ward 6 schools. On March 9 and March 23 9:30-11 AM (or 1:30-3:00PM); ideally, at each school

 – ACTION: Steve to write up invite to circulate to schools

4) IFF Study Discussion:

ACTION: ALL -read and encourage individuals to write letters to encourage Chancellor and Deputy Mayor not to look at this study, but rather at the work that is going on in schools and communities.

ACTION: Suzanne to circulate DeShawn Wright’s response to IFF.

5) Discussion of 2012 CHPSPO Priorities, All

Middle Schools

– Bring Principals (+ LSAT; PTAs) of middle schools together to identify where they think the community can help

– Reference to Heather’s pitch in example: need to know what volunteer needs are at the school

    • Bring PTA leadership together from MS to figure out how to get them more active; bring PTA feeders together w/ MS PTAs
    •  Have a list of ways we think we can help that principals can consider

– Living room chats w/ feeder families

    • Also set expectations

– Leading Tours for Parents

– Have schools hold PTA meetings at EH

– Request from DCPS accountability around MS plan

– Elementary school events at EH (ex: art show of feeder elementary schools at EH)

– Re-engage the collaboration teams

ACTION: Suzanne to reach out to Principals and PTA presidents to meet w/ CHPSPO/feeders

– Elliot-Hine collaboration team meets first Wednesday of the Month at 5:30 PM @ Parent Resource Center at Eliot Hine

– Eliot Hine PTA = 3rd Thursday of the Month


Next CHPSPO Meeting: March 20, 2012

Upcoming Events:

March 10, Alchemy of Great Taste, Tyler Fundraiser

March 17, School Within School Jazz Gala and Auction

March 24, Maury at the Market, Maury Fundraiser

March 24, A Taste of the Hill, Brent Fundraiser

April 27, A Montessori Night’s Dream, Capitol Hill Montessori @ Logan Fundraiser

Visit CHPSPO on the web at

CHPSPO Meeting Notes – September 20, 2011

1. Walk-to-School Day, October 5, Dave Salovesh (CHCS) and George Blackmon (Maury):

· 7:30 AM at Lincoln Park
· Add to planning – map out routes to schools
· See flyer on, and on FB/Twitter for details

2. Advocating for Bike Lanes, Sandra Moscoso-Mills

· Update letter to DDoT w/ discussion and circulate

3. Ward 6 Middle School Plan:

· Generally, most school collaboration teams have not met over the summer (see short notes below); concern about future of plan given changes in DCPS staffing (Office of Transformation)
· Action: agreement to follow up with Chancellor Henderson on April, 2011 meeting and touch base on overall plan; include Chairman Brown, in light of recent focus on middle schools
· Jefferson:

o Overall, academy is an improvement over what would have happened had MS plan not been implemented.
o However, several components of plan have not yet been implemented (application process for 6th grade academy, technology + other resources are lacking, IB has not yet kicked off)· Capitol Hill Montessori at Logan: o School opened
o Some resource issues (materials for 4 out of 9 classrooms) are in process of being resolved
o Montessori middle school will not be implemented; students will feed to Stuart-Hobson/Eliot-Hine/in-boundary for SY12/13 through SY13/14 and then Eliot-Hine/in-boundary for SY14/15 and beyond.
o CHM@L have not had any schoolwide discussions around middle school since the middle school decision was made

· Eliot Hine:

o IB Coordinator in place
o Principal hired w/out panel/involving community
o Enrollment is up (2 sixth grade teachers/classes to be added)
o Principal and IB Coordinator being trained to on IB principles/how to describe IB
o Back to School Night is Thursday – 6:30 PM at Eliot-Hine – all Hill schools are invited.
o Overall, in good shape. Contingent on community showing up. Bulb planting effort being planned for fall.

· Stuart Hobson

o Implementing measures, such as the 5th grade team meeting, charting system to assess children
o Education Spec for capitol improvement in process; working w/ OPEFM, OCTO (Merging boys/girls gyms; arts/music above gym)
o Arts integration + museum program is set to kick off (funded by the school); grantwriting club; part-time grantwriter
o Largest 6th grade class ever
o Working on enhancing comms to parents/parent engagement for Stuart-Hobson; using ‘STARS’

· Other discussion:

· How can we find out where the kids at SH and EL coming from? o LT, JO Wilson kids

o Other wards
o Center City, 2 Rivers, Latin, Edison· How are schools leveraging STARs? Enable Blackboard Connect; SWW – robocalls + emails

· How can CHPSPO further engage EH and Jefferson?o Invite IB coordinator(s) to meetings?

o Meet at middle schools?

4. By-laws Vote, Sherry Trafford: please review – will discuss next time

5. Race to Nowhere Screening, Sherry Trafford – look out for November date, Need for volunteers6. Interest in working on after-school care collaborations?, Suzanne Wells – did not discuss

Next CHPSPO Meeting: October 17, 2011

Upcoming Events:

September 27 10 a.m., Public Roundtable Middle Grades Education in the District, Wilson Building

September 29 6 p.m., DC Parent Power, Thurgood Marshall Center

September 30 5 p.m., Capitol Hill Community Foundation Fall Grant Deadline

October 5 7:30 a.m., Lincoln Park, Walk-to-School Day

October 22 Literary Feast, CHCF Fundraiser to Benefit Capitol Hill Schools

CHPSPO Meeting Notes – August 30, 2011

Capitol Hill Public Schools Parent Organization
Montessori at Logan
215 G St., NE
August 30, 2011
6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.


1. Welcome, and introductions of new school representatives


2. CHPSPO By-Laws – Suggested revisions to be reflected in next version of the By-Laws. CHPSPO will vote on the by-laws on the next meeting (September 20, 2011)


3. Chairman Kwame Brown Public Oversight Roundtable on Middle Grades Education in the District: Preparing our Students for Success in High School and Beyond

  • Heather Schoell ( will testify on behalf of CHPSPO
  • Suzanne will put CHPSPO on testimony schedule
  • Suzanne will prepare draft based on: background of CHPSPO and our role in middle school plan; relationship between feeder schools and their middle school (especially within teachers); request DCPS/DC look at creative ways to make sure they are ready for middle school (summer transition, year-round school); Advocate for diversity of programs at MS level that reflect diversity of elementary schools (IB, varying school size, project-based learning, museum magnet); make sure diversity does not stop at elementary school; Want to see an investment by DC in neighborhood schools; advocate to more granular data


4. Walk-to-School Day, October 5

  • Contact: George Blackmon ( to serve as point of contact for volunteers.
  • NEED volunteers to take on the following:

o Food and giveaways (contact Laura Marks and Tara Flakker???)
o Ask if Gina Arlotto can help/advise on permit for Lincoln Park
o Speaker equipment from Tommy Wells’ office (contact Anne Phelps??)
o Band (Eastern): Heather to contact Rachel S.
o Contact: Yoga (Gabriella Boston?), Elizabeth Jones? (Effervescence)

5. Race to Nowhere Screening

  • Contact: Janet Brown, Maury parent
  • Need for volunteers
  •  Timeframe: November, at Atlas
  • Will need help to sell tickets; spread the word

6. DC Parent Power Organizing Meeting

  • CHPSPO will have a presence. Suzanne Wells, Isabella Harris : Sherry Trafford to attend

7. Discussed DC CAS Scores.

  • No decision on how they fit in to the work that CHPSPO does. Share best practices among schools? Advocate for more granular data?
  • Visit for more comprehensive data.

8. Advocating for more bike lanes by CHPSPO

  • Contact: Sandra Moscoso (
  • Will send letter to DDoT.
  • Will connect with Gina Arlotto, WABA.
  • Please reach out if your school is also willing to advocate individually.

Next CHPSPO Meeting: September 20, 2011

Upcoming Events:

  • August 31 – DC Parent Power Organizing Meeting, 1630 7th St., NW, Shaw Library, 5:30 p.m.
  • September 7 –  Public Oversight Roundtable on Middle Grades Education in the District: Preparing our Students for Success in High School and Beyond, Wilson Building, 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, 10 a.m.
  • October 5 – Walk-to-School Day

CHPSPO Meeting Notes – July 19, 2011

Capitol Hill Public Schools Parent Organization

Miner Elementary School
601 15
th St., NE
July 19, 2011
6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.

New PTA/PTSO Presidents Introductions:
New Presidents from Ludlow-Taylor (Anthony Allard), Tyler (Liz Weeden), Payne (Janice Brown) attended and were introduced.

Race to Nowhere Screening
: We have volunteers to coordinate this. Brainstorm session included:

  • Possible Locations – Eastern, People’s Church, H St. Playhouse, Stuart-Hobson, Jefferson, Brent, Eliot-Hine
  • Dates: ACTION: Schools, please share your calendars to coordinate dates. 
  • Cost/Childcare: Tickets will be $10.

Eliot-Hine Principal Selection:
Quick discussion around the status of this. At the time of the meeting, the principal had been hired, but not announced. The Eliot-Hine principal hiring process did not include feeder school input. Since the meeting, DCPS announced Principal Tynika Young was selected. She held a feeder school meet and greet even on July 28.

Lisa Raymond meeting re: Ward 6 middle schools
: Joe Weedon, Maury parent arranged for a meeting with Lisa Raymond (held on July 22). 

CHPSPO By-lawsDiscussion – discussion and updates will be reflected in the next version of the bylaws.

Next CHPSPO Meeting: August 30, 2011 (NOTE: this will be the last Tuesday)