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W6PSPO Meeting Notes – November 19, 2019

Ward 6 Public Schools Parent Organization (W6PSPO) Meeting Notes

November 19, 2019

Miner ES

1.Sharing PTA/PTO Best Practices – PTA/PTO Meetings Panel/Open Discussion

David Treat and Julie Muir – Miner Elementary, Elsa Faulkenberg – Tyler Elementary, Lona Valmora – Capitol Hill Cluster School

We kicked this series off with a discussion on PTO meetings. Find our notes here. We’ll continue adding to this series at https://w6pspo.org/pto-best-practices/.

2. Campaign for Lead-free water – proposed rule from EPA re; lead and copper is looking for a 60 day extension of public comment period. Asking if W6PSPO will sign-on for extension to March 13 2020 that will go to EPA and OMB. Attendees voted to sign-on

3.  Discussion with the Washington Teachers Union on SY2020/21 Budget Priorities

Priority 1: Fund DC Schools.

Despite an increase in Mayor Bowser’s education budget for FY2020, 20 public schools, including 17 schools in Wards 7 and 8, saw significant budget cuts for the current school year. Overall funding for DCPS did not keep up with rising costs, leading to cuts in many schools.

    • Increased Investment – Meet 2013 Adequacy Levels

In 2013, the District Government commissioned an Adequacy Study calling for per pupil expenditures of $11,628.( In November 2019, the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Education awarded grant to Afton Partners, LLC to conduct a study of the UPSFF.) We need to reach, if not exceed, this amount in the FY2021 budget and for the first time fully funding our schools. The proposed FY 2020 budget increased the UPSFF base by 2.2 percent, from $10,658 to $10,891 per-student.

    •   Closing the Opportunity Gaps – Spending of At-Risk Dollars

Achievement gaps across nearly all subgroups measured by NAEP have not changed or have grown since 2002/2003. The NAEP scores mirror results on the city’s PARCC tests. The PARCC scores show steady, albeit slow, growth across most demographic groups. However, once again, we see achievement gaps growing. Research is clear that increased spending can, when combined with other reforms, help close achievement gaps, but in DC the funds have not reached the students who are in greatest need.

    • Special Education – Increased supplemental funding.

The District of Columbia continues to fail DC students with special needs. The US Department of Education labeled DC as “needs” assistance” in implementing federal requirements of Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA). Additional funding will allow DC Public Schools to reduce special education class sizes and increase the planning time allowed for Special Education Teachers.

 

Priority 2. Living & Learning Conditions.

If we care about children, we have to improve all the conditions that affect them.’ 

    •   Trauma Informed Practices & Screening

When trauma goes unchecked and is sustained, it can disrupt a child’s brain development, interfering with functions children depend on in school such as memory recall, focus and impulse control. In a trauma-informed school, the adults in the school community are prepared to recognize and respond to those who have been impacted by traumatic stress. To ensure adequate staffing, we need more information on the experiences of our students and propose that the city screens every student for trauma and uses the findings to ensure adequate staffing.

Priority 3. One Set of Rules for All Schools.

Regardless of where a student attends school, she is entitled to the same rights as a student, including transparency and adherence to all local laws.

 

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W6PSPO Meeting Notes – January 21, 2020

W6PSPO Meeting Notes

January 21, 2020

Stuart-Hobson MS

1. Laura Marks (Councilmember Charles Allen’s Chief of Staff), Anne Phelps (DC Budget Office Counsel and Senior Advisor) and Jonathan Antista (Deputy Director for Budget) shared an overview of the DC Council performance and budget oversight process. Please review the following documents:

2. Elizabeth Feinstein with Flavors Hook Kids DC presented information about the risks of flavored tobacco products, and current bills before the City Council that would end the sale of flavored e-cigarettes.

  • Most needed action now is to reach out to Councilmembers and ask: 1 for a markup of the bill to ban flavored tobacco to include the flavors of mint and menthol; 2 fund the bill. Take action here.
  • Learn about vaping-related issues at https://flavorshookkidsdc.org/. Contact Elizabeth Feinstone to get involved in local, DC advocacy.

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Next W6PSPO Meeting: February 18, 2020, 6:30-8pm, Location TBD

Upcoming Events

From February 3-7, Teaching for Change’s DC Area Educators for Social Justice, local organizers, and community members will collaborate for the DC Area Black Lives Matter at School Week of Action. The Black Livers Matter at School Week of Action seeks to improve the school experience for students of color. Throughout the week there are evening events and resources are offered to teach about structural racism, intersectional Black identities, Black history, and anti-racist movements. More information is available at http://bit.ly/BLMatSchoolDC2020.

Upcoming Hearings – Sign up early to testify and double-check date here (dates change)

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W6PSPO Meets January 21 & Updates

Dear Ward 6 Public Schools Parent Organization members,

1. The W6PSPO will hold its monthly meeting on Tuesday, January 21, from 6:30 – 8 pm at Stuart Hobson Middle School (410 E St., NE) in the choir/theater room. Laura Marks and Anne Phelps will give us an overview of the DC Council performance and budget oversight process. Also, Elizabeth Feinstein with Flavors Hook Kids DC will present information about the risks of flavored tobacco products, and current bills before the City Council that would end the sale of e-cigarettes.

2. On January 23, there will be a Welcoming for All? Getting to Inclusive Schools Through Policies and Practice event at VanNess Elementary, 1150 5th St., SE, 6 – 8 pm. You can register for the event at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/welcoming-for-all-getting-to-inclusive-schools-through-policy-practice-tickets-86861389755

3. On January 25, the Multilingual Education Fair of DC will take place at Roosevelt High School, 4301 13th St., NW, 10 am – 3 pm. You can register for this event at https://www.mefdc.org/register/. See attached media kit.

4. From February 3-7, Teaching for Change’s DC Area Educators for Social Justice, local organizers, and community members will collaborate for the DC Area Black Lives Matter at School Week of Action. The Black Livers Matter at School Week of Action seeks to improve the school experience for students of color. Throughout the week there are evening events and resources are offered to teach about structural racism, intersectional Black identities, Black history, and anti-racist movements. More information is available at http://bit.ly/BLMatSchoolDC2020.

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W6PSPO Updates

Dear Ward 6 Public Schools Parent Organization members,

Below are updates to share with your school communities:

1. EdFest is this Saturday, December 14, 2019, at the Stadium Armory from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm. Good luck to all of you as you get the opportunity to share what makes your schools special.

2. DCPS will be opening the Stevens Early Learning Center at the historic Thaddeus Stevens School building (1050 21st St., NW) for SY20/21. This will be the city’s first citywide (no boundary) PK3/PK4 program. There will be a priority preference for at-risk families. You can learn more about the Stevens Early Learning Center at EdFest.

3. The Committee of the Whole and the Committee on Education will hold a public oversight hearing on updates to the Master Facilities Plan (MFP) on December 18, 2019. Testimony at the hearing is being limited to invited witnesses, and W6PSPO was invited to testify. Sandra Moscoso-Mills will deliver W6PSPO’s testimony. We plan to include the following in the testimony:

a. The importance of the MFP being guided by the principle that the city is responsible for providing facilities for our by-right public education system;

b. The continuing need for School Improvement Teams (SIT) to be partners with DCPS and DGS, and for the SIT to have genuine opportunities to provide input in a timely manner so the input can be considered in the design process;

c. The continuing need to address adequately environmental issues like lead in water during major renovations;

d. The importance of considering renewable energy generation as part of every school renovation in the city;

e. Questions about how swing space is funded;

f. Express reservations about co-location of charter schools on the site of existing DCPS facilities; and

g. Encourage planning to ensure priority access to field space on school property for all DCPS students.

If you have other thoughts on this testimony, please contact Sandra Moscoso-Mills at smoscosomills@hotmail.com.

4. DCPS is shifting to STEMscopes as its primary science curricular in SY19-20 (see attached). If there is a parent interested in following the rollout of the STEMscopes for W6PSPO, please let me know.

5. There will NOT be a W6PSPO meeting in December. The last thing any of you need during this busy time of the year is another meeting. W6PSPO will be back in full swing for its January 21 meeting.

Suzanne Wells

Science Overview K-5 SY19-20.pdf

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ShawMS@Banneker community meeting – Sunday 11/24/18 at 2pm

Neighbors –
On behalf of the parent-led ShawMS@Banneker group, I am writing to invite you to our community meeting this coming Sunday, November 24th, at 2pm at the Thurgood Marshall Center (1816 12th St NW). Shaw@B is a group of parents formed to engage with DCPS and the community around the planning process for a Shaw Middle School at the Banneker site, with the goal of having students in 800 Euclid St NW as soon as possible, potentially as early as the fall of 2021 (when current 4th graders would be in 6th grade).
At this meeting:
  • we will present the background on Shaw@B,
  • host a presentation by Cardozo EC Principal Arthur Mola on the current middle school program at Cardozo, and discuss how the community can support his school,
  • dig into the result of our survey of parents on their aspirations regarding educational programming for middle schoolers, and
  • discuss next steps.
We hope you can join us!
Becky Reina
Cleveland ES parent
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W6PSPO Meets Tuesday @ Miner

The Ward 6 Public Schools Parent Organization will meet on Tuesday, November 19, 2019, at Miner Elementary (601 15th St., NE). At our meeting we will be sharing best practices with each other on organizing PTA/PTO meetings. Representatives from Miner, Tyler, the Capitol Hill Cluster School, and Maury will kick off our discussion. We will also be joined by representatives from the Washington Teachers Union who will be sharing their FY20/21 budget priorities.

111919 W6PSPO Agenda

Hope to see you on Tuesday.

Suzanne Wells

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W6PSPO Meeting Notes – October 15, 2019

W6PSPO Meeting Notes

October 15, 2019

Eastern High School

 

1. Eastern High School – Principal Brown

Dialogue on where we want to see Eastern 10 years. EHS is at phase zero of the planning – they are collecting information and want to hear from us.

Core values:

PRIDE of Capitol Hill: Passion, Respect, Innovation, Determination, Excellence

Academic and Other Programming

EHS is an IB World School diploma program for 11th and 12th grades. They are working on being authorized as a “MYP” (Middle Years Programme) for 9th and 10th grade that prepares them for the diploma program. Even if they aren’t in the IB diploma program, a student can take the challenging IB courses.  All 9th and 10th graders would be in the MYP.

EHS is also now a NAF-recognized health sciences school.

There are many extracurricular activities including band, choir, JROTC, sports, Mighty Greens, Chess Club and more.

Adding more pathways, like music, arts and humanities, to encourage more interest-driven programming during the school day to engage them throughout their years at Eastern. They also have a 9th grade academy.

Outcomes

In ELA, 25% of Eastern students scoring at 4 or 5 (8% increase over last year). In math, 0% are at 4 or 5.

EHS graduation rate is 78%, at high end of the comprehensive high schools.

Enrollment is on the rise at 792 (target was 754). More feeders moving in and more in-boundary staying at EHS. (Feeders are: Brown EC, Stuart Hobson, Jefferson, Eliot Hine, Kelly Miller and CHML)

Challenges:

  • Vertical articulation with middle schools is not something that is regularly happening. But, Eastern is starting to do more to understand the students coming from the middle schools, particularly with Stuart Hobson. Making feeder school engagement more intentional, focus on bringing in Eliot Hine and Jefferson students this year, and need to strengthen ties with Brown and Kelly Miller.
  • Shifting curriculum and lack of training. Need stability and continuity for curriculum to make sure it builds all the way through high school.
  • Students not getting support they need BEFORE coming to HS. Students need to learn early how to resolve conflict peacefully and cope with issues. They are not getting enough of that and it carries into high school – inside or outside the school. Eastern has partners to help including a restorative justice program. They also have weapons/mace abatement policy. The school also works closely with WMATA, MPD and resource officers to create strong relationships and understandings.

What can parents do?

  • Notify EHS early whether your child is going to enroll.

Questions to parents: What should Eastern accomplish in the next 10 years? How should Eastern achieve it? How can we help?

  • Promote more all that it is doing for kids
  • Do more to ensure the students are safe and the culture is positive and safe
  • Are there other types of academies or strands to ensure all kids are connected and focused, engaged during the day?
  • Invite middle school kids earlier into Eastern activities – as classes – before 8th Because they choose with their peers and the kids are making the decisions in many cases, not the adults, on where they go to school. And they are doing it in the 7th grade.
  • Performance should include safe, caring environment; stable leadership; and growth (we should look at the reading level of kids coming in here and selective schools). We should make that case with DCPS.
  • Need to find the way to engage more parents at the high school level – and what are the best ways to do that? And what is the reason that parents should come when kids are much more self-sufficient?

2. Student Safety Task Force

Parent and W6PSPO member, Danica Petroshius, is serving on the DCPS Student Safety Task Force. The next meeting is October 30th from 6-8 pm at DCPS where they will give input on policies and how to best implement them. Danica is asking for input on what recommendations she should bring to the Task Force. She has asked that you provide input to incorporate into the feedback by October 27th. You can email her at dpetroshius@yahoo.com. The policies DCPS is asking for feedback on are:

 

3. Ideas for Future Meetings

Suzanne asked for quick-response ideas for future meeting topics. Members suggested the following topics:

Parent Advocacy

  • Strategy discussion on how to recruit more members and what we want people to do with the information we all share
  • How to advocate – training, discussion, effective strategies
  • How can W6PSPO be more visible?

Feeder Patterns

  • How do we help our feeder patterns be more successful and make more connections across our schools?

Budget

  • Budget – updated schedule this year and the how-to’s of the budget process
  • Discussion of At-Risk funds and how LSATs should understand and use the information
  • Understand how central office supports programs within school and how it affects school budgets and budget planning

Sharing Information Among Schools

  • Best practices, lessons learned in schools such as communications in schools, tools, school improvement, etc. Maybe get feedback ahead of time on schools that are struggling with certain issues to focus the discussion
  • Discuss how to create a clearinghouse on tools or things that work well

How to Collaborate More with Other Groups

  • Have EmpowerEd present on their work and discuss collaboration possibilities
  • Have C4DC present on their work and discuss collaboration possibilities

 

Next W6PSPO Meeting: November 19, 2019

Upcoming Events

October 21, 11 am, Committee on Education, Dyslexia and Other Reading Disabilities Screening and Prevention Pilot Program Act of 2019.  Sign up to testify.

October 21, 11 am, Committee on Recreation and Youth Affairs, Public Oversight Roundtable on Access to the Public Field at Jelleff Recreation Center. Contact RYA@dccouncil.us to testify.

October 29, 4 pm, Committee on Education, Annual Youth Roundtable on Safe Passage and Other Issues Facing DC Youth.  Opportunity for students PK3 – 12 to testify.  Sign up to testify.

November 2, 2 – 5 pm, MoTH School at Capitol Hill Day School.

November 6, 10 am, Committee on Education, District of Columbia Public Schools Student Technology Equity Act of 2019.  Sign up to testify.

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W6PSPO Meets Tuesday Oct 15, 2019 @ Eastern High School

The Ward 6 Public Schools Parent Organization will meet on Tuesday, October 15, at 6:30 pm at Eastern High School, 1700 East Capitol St., NE. We will be joined by Eastern Principal Sah Brown. Principal Brown will share the current efforts to update the vision for Eastern High School, and we will have the opportunity to share our ideas about the vision. We will also have an update on the advocacy efforts around the recent sexual assault allegations. Finally, we will discuss ideas for future topics for W6PSPO meetings, and elections for W6PSPO officers.

Hope to see you on Tuesday.

Suzanne Wells

101519 W6PSPO

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Get Ready for Walk to School Day – Oct 2, 2019!

WTSD_2inch_ColorOn Wednesday, October 2, 2019, at 7:30 am, students from 16+ Ward 6 schools will gather at Lincoln Park (11th & East Capitol Streets, SE) for activities, snacks, warm-up exercises, student performances, and local speakers – including Ward 6 Councilmember Charles Allen and DC Deputy Mayor for Education Paul Kihn.

Enjoy activities for kids, giveaways, light snacks, and coffee. Walkers, cyclists, skaters, strollers, scooters and pedestrians are all welcome.

Walkers depart between 8:15 and 8:20 am so we all get to school on time!

Guest speakers, performers, and sponsors will round out the Lincoln Park Walk-to-School event:

  • Ward 6 Councilmember Charles Allen will kick off and MC the festivities
  • Local fitness celebrities Gabriella Boston and Kathy Pugh will warm up the crowd
  • Other speakers include Deputy Mayor for Education Paul Kihn, DC Department of Transportation Director Jeff Marootian, and National Park Service (NPS) representatives
  • At-Large Councilmember Elissa Silverman will make balloon animals (!!!)
  • The Eastern High School “Blue and White Marching Machine” will perform
  • The JO Wilson Cheerleaders and the Tyler Step team will perform
  • Community members will join with DC Water, the DC Department of Energy and Environment, the DC Public Library, and the DC State Board of Education
  • The Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) will support safe traffic flow around the park
  • The Capitol Hill Community Foundation generously supports the event
  • Coffee will be donated by New Course Catering and Restaurant which provides job training for low income/homeless men
  • The Ward 6 Public Schools Parent Organization (http://chpspo.org) organizes the event. Volunteers from participating schools make this annual event possible (Capitol Hill Montessori, Eliot-Hine MS, J.O. Wilson ES, Maury ES, Payne ES, Miner ES, Peabody Early Childhood, School Within School @ Goding, Stuart Hobson MS, Tyler ES, Van Ness ES, Watkins ES, St. Peters School, and more).

Ward 6 joins schools across DC in celebrating Walk-to-School Day – here’s a list of events registered: http://www.walkbiketoschool.org/registration/whoswalking.php?sid=DC

Screenshot 2019-10-01 11.20.02

 

About Walk-to-School Day

Walk-to-School Day is celebrated across the country – and the world – each October. Walk-to-School Day inspires the entire community to come together and promote health and safer routes for students to walk to school.

More information here:

http://www.walkbiketoschool.org/learn-more/about-us/

https://chpspo.org/

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W6PSPO Meets Tuesday, October 17

The Ward 6 Public Schools Parent Organization will meet on Tuesday, October 17 at 6:30 pm. I am still working to confirm the location, and will let you know ASAP where the meeting will be.

We will be joined by Carla Mike, the DCPS Connected Schools Manager and Lena Heid, the Eliot-Hine Connected Schools Manager. We will also be joined by Teresa Biagioni, the DCPS Director of School Planning who will be sharing initial plans for the Stevens Early Learning Center DCPS will be opening. We will also have a discussion led by Betsy Wolf on the Comprehensive Staffing Model (see attached), and a discussion on possible agenda topics for W6PSPO meetings during SY19/20.

Finally, we need to begin planning for elections for the W6PSPO Board of Directors.

Please consider running for one of the following positions:

Chair – Prepare for monthly meetings including developing the agenda, inviting speakers and identifying meeting locations. Inform membership about relevant education issues affecting public schools in Ward 6. Testify on an as needed basis to represent the views and opinions of the W6PSPO membership.

Vice-Chair – Assist the Chair in all responsibilities.

Secretary – Maintain the CHPSPO website, including CHPSPO’s Flickr, Twitter and Facebook accounts. Prepare minutes from the monthly meetings.

Treasurer – Maintain CHPSPO’s 501(c)3 status and file appropriate tax documents.

2020 Bike-to-School Chair (May 2020) – Lead a group of parent volunteers to plan the 2020 Bike-to-School Day event.

2020 Walk-to-School Chair (October 2020) – Lead a group of parent volunteers to plan the 2020 Walk-to-School Day event.

Self-nominations are encouraged.

Hope to see you on Tuesday.

Suzanne Wells

Budget Models 071719.docx