By: Paul Negron, Public Affairs Specialist
We’ve collected the most important education news and upcoming events here in the District and around the country!
Cracking code to ‘break the cycle’: STEM middle school opens in DC | WTOP
Digital Pioneers Academy is one of three new D.C. public charter schools that opened for the 2018-2019 academic year. Founded by education veteran Mashea Ashton, its mission is to prepare kids living in one of the city’s most underserved areas for a future in one of the world’s most in-demand fields: STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics).
Bowser Picks Former Consultant For Deputy Mayor Of Education | WAMU
Mayor Muriel Bowser has chosen Paul Kihn, a former consultant for D.C. Public Schools to be the District’s new Deputy Mayor of Education. As the highest education official in the city, Kihn would be charged with overseeing education agencies in the mayor’s office and developing a citywide education strategy for the city’s 91,537 students in public and public charter schools.
Bowser taps new deputy mayor for education from outside D.C. schools | Washington Post
D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) announced Tuesday that an education consultant who occupied a top school system post in Philadelphia will serve as the District’s deputy mayor for education — one of the most powerful education jobs in the city.
Maisha Riddlesprigger: What it really means to be a DCPS principal | DC Line
Many people will tell you that the role of school principal in DC is hard. Well, it’s actually exhausting and sometimes it’s thankless. While all of those statements may be true, what often doesn’t make headlines is the tremendous joy and satisfaction you experience everyday knowing that you are preparing young people in DC to positively influence society and thrive in life.
DC Debuts Tiny Homes in Deanwood | Urban Turf
In the rain on Monday, the Department of Community and Housing Development (DHCD) unveiled a pair of tiny homes, constructed in the 1100 block of 50th Place NE in partnership with the DC Students Construction Trades Foundation. Students from the Academy of Construction and Design at IDEA Public Charter School in Northeast assembled the two houses, which were designed by Minim House.
Principal placed on leave after being taped mocking student’s sex assault claim | Washington Post
A D.C. high school principal captured on tape ridiculing a student who had reported a sexual assault was placed on administrative leave Thursday by city officials amid growing calls for the principal’s ouster.
D.C. principal was taped mocking student’s sex assault claim, lawsuit says | Washington Post
In June of last year, a freshman at Roosevelt High School in Northwest Washington reported to Principal Aqueelha James that she had been sexually assaulted by another student in a school bathroom. The lawsuit asserts that James and other school system officials failed to adequately investigate the sexual assault allegations, as required by federal law, and that James defamed the girl by impugning her credibility to police officers.
D.C. Schools Don’t Have Enough Transit Cards For Kids. The City Says It’s Not A Shortage. | WAMU
Public school officials in D.C. have underestimated the demand for new SmartTrip cards for students, which could leave many kids stranded at Metro stations and bus stops next week. The change is causing frustration for schools that don’t have enough cards to give students.
Faking The Grade: One question final exam allows HS student to graduate | WJLA
Answering one question, “Who is most responsible for the current relationship between Washington, DC and Congress” was all it took for one DC public school student, enrolled in the 2017-2018 summer school program, to pass a required course to graduate 12th grade.
The Effects of Universal Preschool in Washington, D.C. | Center for American Progress
In 2009, Washington, D.C., began an ambitious expansion that offers two years of universal, full-day preschool across the city’s public schools, public charters, and some private preschool programs administered by community-based organizations. As of 2017, approximately 9 out of 10 of the District of Columbia’s 4-year-olds and 7 out of 10 of the city’s 3-year-olds were enrolled in publicly funded preschool through the expansion.
School-age population likely to grow most outside the Wilson High School boundary | D.C. Policy Center
If children continue to enroll in public schools by kindergarten and transition between grade bands at the same rates as they do today, D.C. could have about 104,600 students in pre-kindergarten through grade 12 by 2026-27 (an estimated 21,100 additional students based on current conditions in addition to the 83,491 enrolled in 2016-17).
A Study of Enrollment Projections for D.C.’s Public Schools: Assuring Accuracy and Transparency | DCist
Public school officials in D.C. need to plan for an additional 12,000 students in public and public charter schools in the next 10 years, according to a study released today by the Office of the D.C. Auditor. The number represents a 13 percent increase in enrollment, pushing the total number of students in the system to over 100,000.
Grosso schedules hearing on bills to prevent and respond to sexual abuse, assault in schools | Councilmember Grosso
Two bills, the School Safety Act of 2018 and the Student Safety and Consent Education Act of 2018, would require all schools to have policies in place to prevent and properly respond to both child sexual abuse between adults and minors and sexual harassment and assault among students, including dating violence. Councilmember Grosso will hold a hearing on these bills on November 1, 2018.
Many State ESSA Plans Minimize Performance of Vulnerable Students, Report Finds | Education Week
Many state accountability plans for the Every Student Succeeds Act don’t do a great job of incorporating the performance of vulnerable subgroups of students, such as racial minorities, English-learners, and those with disabilities, according to an analysis released by the Alliance for Excellent Education, a research and advocacy organization in Washington.
School Notes: Attendance plays key role in state plan | Frederick News-Post
Thirty-six states, including Maryland, and the District of Columbia will soon receive school accountability scores that are based in part on student attendance and chronic absenteeism.
Guns and Disadvantaged Students Take Center Stage at Senate ESSA Hearing | Education Week
While several state education chiefs told the Senate Education committee Tuesday how they’re using the Every Student Succeeds Act to transform their schools and accountability systems, Democrats used much of the hearing to highlight their opposition to the idea of using federal ESSA money to arm educators.
Democrats Pan ‘Dangerous and Dumb’ Idea to Arm Teachers as Gun Concerns Hijack ESSA Hearing | 74
State education leaders from Nebraska, Delaware, and South Carolina, along with an education advocate, had been called to testify before the committee Tuesday on “states leading the way” in implementing the Every Student Succeeds Act. Instead, about half of the hearing focused on using federal grants to arm teachers, which had sparked the protesters’ ire.
ESSA Report Card Design Challenge to help rethink how families access data about schools | Department of Education
Join the U.S. Department of Education and the Data Quality Campaign on November 8–9 in Washington, DC for two days of sketching, prototyping and building solutions to help states design family-friendly approaches to report cards that make school data more transparent and accessible.
What’s in Store for States on Federal ESSA Oversight | Education Week
With the 2018-19 school year in full swing, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has finished approving nearly every state’s plan to implement the Every Student Succeeds Act. But in some ways, the federal government’s work on ESSA is just beginning.
State agency rejects Va. school district’s plan to arm school employees | Washington Post
A Virginia school district’s effort to arm teachers and other school employees has encountered a setback after a state agency refused to endorse the district’s plan. The Department of Criminal Justice Services rejected Lee County Superintendent Brian Austin’s application to register as an armed special conservator of the peace, a designation the district hoped would permit school employees to carry firearms in schools.
Boundary struggles: A Maryland school system looks for more diversity | Washington Post
Montgomery County’s school system is diverse, but its schools are less so. Some have high poverty rates, while others are tucked into affluent enclaves of the Maryland suburbs. Many bring together large percentages of students of color, and others not as much.
How To Talk To Young People About The Kavanaugh Story | NPR
Young people around the country are among those joining the debate over Christine Blasey Ford’s accusation of sexual assault against Judge Brett Kavanaugh in 1982, when both were teenagers. What are teens learning from all this? And how should adults be handling this conversation?
Maryland state school board agrees to allow non-educators to become superintendents | Baltimore Sun
The state school board voted Tuesday to allow the appointment of non-educators to superintendent positions. The new regulation passed despite significant protest by educators across the state, including the association representing local school boards.
New Study: More Than 300,000 Children Have ‘Vanished’ From Schools After Local Police Formed Partnerships With ICE | 74
As the Trump administration continues its crackdown on undocumented immigrants, school officials across the country report that the heightened enforcement has caused widespread turbulence. Students express fear that schools are cooperating with immigration authorities, and educators have noted an increase in emotional and behavioral problems.
When Students Say #MeToo, Schools May Be Unprepared to Help | Education Week
If students speak up about sexual assault, are their schools ready to help them? Some researchers and advocates say there are too many barriers for students to seek assistance in such a vulnerable situation, and those concerns are being stoked anew amid a tumultuous Supreme Court confirmation process that has been complicated by allegations of sexual assault from three women.
This fall, all New York students will be learning about mental health | NBC News
Elementary, middle and high school students across the state of New York have a new topic on their educational agendas as they head back to class this fall: mental health.
Should We Teach About Consent In K-12? Brett Kavanaugh’s Home State Says Yes | WAMU
Few schools across the country are required to teach about consent or healthy relationships in sex ed classes.
Charles Co. school seniors with third of year missed, unexcused allowed to graduate, records show | Fox 5
Charles County Public Schools is graduating seniors who have missed a third of the school year in unexcused absences, according to attendance records.
The Effects of Universal Preschool in Washington, D.C. | Center for American Progress
2018 State of Computer Science Education | Code.org
Student absenteeism- Who misses school and how missing school matters for performance | Economic Policy Institute
Learning from Student Voice: Bullying Today | YouthTruth
TOO MANY STATES MINIMIZE STUDENT SUBGROUP PERFORMANCE IN ESSA ACCOUNTABILITY SYSTEMS | Alliance for Education
9/29: OSSE DC Parent and Family Engagement Summit
WEEK OF 10/1
10/3: SBOE Working Session
10/3: SEL and Afterschool: What is the Connection? Is there Evidence?
10/3: On the Road to High-Quality Early Learning
10/4: Silence the Violence Town Hall
10/4: Briefing on Creating Supportive and Inclusive Environments for LGBTQ Students
10/4: Our Schools. Our Choice: Ward 8 Town Hall on DCPS Chancellor Selection
10/4: Using Data to Strengthen Your State’s Teacher Pipeline
10/5: Keeping the Promise of Public Education
10/5: First Fridays Tour to Briya PCS
WEEK OF 10/8
10/9: SBOE ESSA Task Force
10/9: DC Public Education Master Facilities Plan Community Meetings – Roosevelt HS
10/10: How ESSA Affects YOU: Shifting Focus to Support Today’s Educators
10/11: DC Public Education Master Facilities Plan Community Meetings – Woodridge Library
10/12: Sharing Our Voice: What Students Think About School Mental Health
10/12: Strategies for Reducing Chronic Absenteeism and Improving Student Attendance
10/13: DC Public Education Master Facilities Plan Community Meetings – Kramer Middle School
WEEK OF 10/15
10/15: Public Oversight Hearing on Issues Facing District of Columbia Youth
10/17-20: NASBE Annual Conference
10/20: East of the River Book Festival
10/20: EmpowerEd Teacher Voice Summit
WEEK OF 10/22
10/24: SBOE Public Meeting
10/24: DCI Changemaker Session #8: Jack Jacobson
10/24-28: Council of the Great City Schools 62ND ANNUAL FALL CONFERENCE
10/25: 15th Annual AERA Brown Lecture in Education Research
10/27: ResearchEd Philadelphia
11/13-15: SEF’s 2018 “The Politics of Equity” Forum