CHPSPO Meeting is Wednesday, April 23 @ Payne ES

Dear Capitol Hill Public Schools Parent Organization members,

Hope everyone had a great Spring break. CHPSPO will meet on Wednesday, April 23, from 6:30 – 8 p.m. at Payne Elementary (1445 C Street, SE). We will be discussing Bike to School Day (May 7), the proposals for school boundaries/feeder patterns, SY14/15 budgets, and ways our community can support homeless children attending our area schools. Attached is the agenda. Hope to see you on Wednesday.

Suzanne Wells

042314 CHPSPO Agenda

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CHPSPO Meeting April 23

Dear Capitol Hill Public School Parent Organization members,

CHPSPO will not meet on the third Tuesday of April because of Spring break. Our next meeting will be Wednesday, April 23 (note that we will not meet on April 22 as previously planned due to a hearing the Public Charter School Board is holding on April 22). The meeting will be from 6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.

The Mayor’s Fiscal Year 15 DCPS budget was released on Thursday. Here is a link to the budget:
http://cfo.dc.gov/sites/default/files/dc/sites/ocfo/publication/attachments/ga_dcps_chapter_2015.pdf

The City Council is holding a hearing on the budget on April 17. If you are in town, and want to testify, the hearing will start at 10 a.m. in room 500 at the Wilson building. Contact Jamaal Jordan at jjordan or call 724-8061.

Mayor’s Budget Townhall

Monday, April 21, 6:30-8:30 PM

Capitol Hill Montessori @ Logan, 215 G St., NE

http://budget.dc.gov/community-meetings

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Boundary Review

Most of you received robo calls about the upcoming community meetings being held on the school boundaries and feeder patterns. These are important meetings to make your voices heard. There will be community meetings this Saturday at Dunbar and Saturday, April 26, also at Dunbar.

Center City Community Meeting #1
Saturday, April 5
Dunbar High School – Cafeteria
101 N St. NW
Information Fair: 9 a.m. – 9:45 a.m.
Presentation: 9:45 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.
Working Group: 10:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Center City Community Meeting #2
Saturday, April 26
Dunbar High School – Cafeteria
101 N St. NW

Information Fair: 9 a.m. – 9:45 a.m.
Presentation: 9:45 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

Working Group: 10:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Visit http://dme.dc.gov/boundaries for more information.

Suzanne Wells

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DC Public Schools FY15 Budget Hearing Testimony by Khai Booker – CHML

Good Evening to All,

I am Khai Booker, a long-time parent at Capitol Hill Montessori at Logan.  I have 2 children one in 4th grade and another in 6th grade. Our school offers a unique choice in education, is richly diverse and hails from every Ward in the city.  Currently we serve from PK-3 through 6th grade.  We are scheduled to expand to 7th grade next year and 8th the year after.  At a time when many families are leaving DCPS at middle school, we believe that with the right investments, we can keep our students and bring others back from charters, private schools and the suburbs.

Public Montessori is at the forefront of a national trend, backed by a 100 year old pedagogy that has been tested around the globe.   Simply put: Montessori seeks to instill a love of learning in EVERY child. The learning environment we have created shapes the child for success academically as well as socially and has been proven effective in research and by our alumni.  Throughout its history, Capitol Hill Montessori has always worked to mirror the goals of DCPS. Our current Student Satisfaction Index is 98%.  We believe this score reflects Montessori’s insistence that students’ voices be heard.  They need to know that the Mayor and DCPS will keep their word and do their part.

According to the lottery results, many other families want to join our middle school. Over 1/3 of our 6th and 7th grade applicants have chosen CHML as one of their top three schools.  This expansion is definitely about more than 7 rising 7th graders and right-sizing a few toilets.  If we don’t build it, they will still come and when the facilities are inadequate, there will be many angry and disappointed families.   More importantly there will be children who have been let down by the very adults upon whom they should be able to depend.

I’d like to make a few points regarding our current Math test scores, as our Reading scores are very strong. Despite the fact that our school has doubled in size in 3yrs, and the fact that Montessori teaches Math differently than most traditional schools, our Math scores are on a steady incline. On the 2012-13 DC CAS, 38% of our students scored Proficient or Advanced in Math and our goal is to increase this number to 46%.  Our scores on this year’s PIA’s give us hope.  We want to be great.  For this reason, we are doing the following:

  •          Our Students use First In Math and LearnZillion at home;
  •          Our Teachers use sample lessons from Achieve the Core;
  •          We have a  DC CAS Resource Specialist assisting all teachers on how to maximize their classroom time leading up to the test;
  •          We host a Saturday Scholars program.

We are part of a strong and committed community but one of our most important partners must be DCPS. What answer would this panel give to the rising 6th and 7th graders who were promised a middle school and those who are transferring to CHML? Would you still tell them that all you can manage are a few age-appropriate toilets? And finally, do you think that they will believe in someone who does not keep their word?  Thank you for your time and attention.

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Testimony of Khai Booker,

Parent at Capitol Hill Montessori at Logan

March 20th, 2014

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CHPSPO Meeting is Tuesday, March 18 at SWS@Goding

The Capitol Hill Public Schools Parent Organization will meet on Tuesday, March 18, at 6:30 p.m. at SWS@Goding (920 F St., NE).

I wanted to get our preliminary agenda out a little early to allow folks to prepare for the meeting. Principals were to have received their school budget allocations for the 2014/2015 school year today. At the meeting next week, we’d like to discuss the school level budgets, and how the actual school budgets match the Mayor and Chancellor’s budget proposals, e.g., to increase middle school funding. If each school could come with a brief summary of their budgets, it would be appreciated. The budget word from Maury Elementary today is that their enrollment in SY14/15 is expected to grow by 32 students, but their budget is only increasing by $101; Maury’s per student funding was $9,761 this year and is projected to drop to $9,461 next year.

We will also be discussing the applications the Public Charter School Board is considering for SY2014, and potential impacts on the Ward 6 schools (see http://www.dcpcsb.org/Start-a-Charter-School/New-Charter-School-Start-Ups.aspx?utm_source=iContact&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=PCSB%20News%20Releases&utm_content=Charter+School+Apps+2014). The PCSB expects to hold a public hearing in mid-April on the applications.

Finally, we hope to have a discussion on the recent reallocations of the school modernization funds.

Never a dull moment when it comes to DC education issues!

Suzanne Wells

P.S. Don’t forget to go to the Capitol Hill Cluster School Auction this Friday, March 14, at 7 p.m. at the Atlas Performing Arts Center

031814 CHPSPO Agenda.docx

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CHPSPO Meeting Notes – February 12, 2014

Capitol Hill Public Schools Parent Organization
Amidon-Bowen Elementary School

401 I Street, SW

February 12, 2014
6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.

  1. Update on school boundaries and feeder patterns – Abigail Smith (Deputy Mayor for Education (DME)); Claudia Lujan (Deputy Mayor for Education’s office); Denise Forte and Martin Welles (Ward 6 representatives to Advisory Committee) http://dme.dc.gov/book/student-assignment-and-school-boundaries-review-process
    • Abigail Smith delivered a powerpoint presentation with an update of the DC Student Assignment and School Boundary Review Process.  At the end of her presentation, the floor was opened for comments/questions.
    • Comment: At the focus groups that were recently held, participants were asked for feedback on school boundaries and feeder patterns, but were not provided data about how the current boundaries/feeder patterns are playing out. A: Data will be part of overall discussion, particularly with working groups. See policy brief #3: http://dme.dc.gov/node/776162
    • Misalignment of middle schools – Q: what is percentage of rising 5th graders enrolled in their designated middle schools (and elsewhere) and data around ‘out of feeder’ enrollment/trends around actual feeder patterns from ES to MS to HS? A: The DME’s office has not assessed that data, but the data will be pulled.
    • Comment: Process seems to lack a comprehensive plan around schools; how to utilize space, how system(s) want(s) to evolve. A: The process is meant to elicit ideas that could inform a comprehensive plan.  They are not making an assumption that comprehensive planning will happen prior to making decisions on school boundaries and feeder patterns.  There are discussions between the DME’s office, DCPS, and the PCSB, but there isn’t a “beautifully coordinated process.”
    • Q: How can planning take place when there is no predictability around the opening of charter schools/misalignment of middle grades (e.g., many charters enroll MS at 5th grade)? A: DME does not have authority over PCSB, but the goal of including them in the advisory committee and having the discussions is so that there is better coordination.  DME’s office wants to focus on things they have control over.
    • Q: Will committee make any recommendations about closing schools? A: No, this exercise will not lead to recommendations around closing schools but will make recommendations around strategically opening schools (like Van Ness).
    • Q.  Is it possible to get choice and equitable access simultaneously while looking at issue of income distribution across the city? What is definition of quality?  A.  Example of San Francisco was described, which incorporates a policy that guarantees a certain number of slots in high-performing schools for students from low income families.
    • Brainstorming around ideas to influence policy
      • Controlled choice (San Francisco example)
      • Colorado example of once in an out of boundary feeder pattern, cannot go back to ‘in boundary’ schools without going back through lottery
        • Expression of ‘too much choice’ today in DC leading to a lack of investment in feeder or destination schools.
    • Opportunity for better programmatic integration among feeder/destination via vertical alignment (foreign language consistency across ES/MS/HS, specialty programming like IB, museum, project-based learning…)
    • Address capacity issues by creating more ‘Cluster’ models that dedicate a building to early childhood, ES, MS, HS
    • Better sharing of data by PCSB and DCPS so that when schools open/closing decisions are made, they are done with strategic approach.

2. Adequacy Study Analysis – Soumya Bhat, DC Fiscal Policy Institute. Read detail of recommendations here: http://www.dcfpi.org/dcfpi-feedback-on-dme-adequacy-study

    • Question was asked about at risk funding, and how it is allocated at the school level?   Several examples of schools that do not receive the proportion of funds they should.  It was discussed that OSSE is accountable for the distribution of these funds.
    • Per pupil funding to include the facility funds… could underfund DCPS by $47M and overfund charters by $9M
    • Support around keeping maintenance costs outside school funding formula. Data does not exist around facility needs.
    • Moving resources allocated by outside agencies (like school nurses, etc..). Support keeping nurses outside.

3. Candidates Forum Update and Planning – PLEASE CIRCULATE WITHIN YOUR COMMUNITIES

  •  February 20     Ward 6 City Council Candidates Forum – Capitol Hill Presbyterian Church

-          Sponsored by Eastern Market Metro Community Association (EMMCA) and Capitol Hill Group Ministry

-          Spread the word

  •  March 6        Ward 6 City Council Forum at Stuart Hobson

-          Sponsored by CHPSPO

-          Assist in planning and spread the word

-          Article in Hill Rag

  • TBD    City-wide Mayoral Forum focused on education

 

Next CHPSPO Meeting:  March 18, 2014

 

Upcoming Events:

Candidates Forums

  • February 20     Ward 6 City Council Candidates Forum (CHPSPO co-sponsor) – @ Capitol Hill Prebysterian, 7-9PM
  • March 6           Ward 6 City Council Candidates Education Forum (CHPSPO sponsor)
  • TBD                Mayoral Candidates Education Forum (CHPSPO co-sponsor)

2014 Fundraisers

  • March 8           Tyler Alchemy of Great Taste
  • March 14         Cluster Rocks! Auction & Gala
  • March 22         Maury at the Market
  • March 29         Brent Taste of the Hill
  • May 18            Capitol Hill Classic 10K/3K/Fun Run

 

Ward 6 Parent/Community Meetings on School Boundaries/Feeder Patterns

  • Eliot-Hine Middle School – Thursday, Feb. 13 (cancelled due to snow)
  • Stuart-Hobson Middle School – Tuesday, Feb. 18
  • Jefferson Middle School – Thursday, Feb. 20

WARD 6 Community Forums On School Boundaries & Feeder Patterns

The mayor’s office is reviewing DCPS school assignment policies* – for the first time in 40 years. The Ward 6 representatives on the Deputy Mayor of Education’s Advisory Committee on Student Assignment – Denise Forte and Martin Welles – are interested to hear from you at three community forums:

Eliot-Hine Middle School – Thursday, Feb. 13
Stuart-Hobson Middle School – Tuesday, Feb. 18
Jefferson Middle School – Thursday, Feb. 20

All forums 6:30-8:00pm (6:00pm arrival)

Come to any or all of the forums to share your views and recommendations on:

  • Your experience with the current student assignment and choice policy (including lotteries)
  • School boundaries for elementary, middle and high schools for Ward 6 families
  • Feeder patterns for middle and high schools
  • Bridging student assignment and choice policies across DCPS schools and charter schools

* School choice and student assignment policies establish the access rights that students have to public schools in the District of Columbia. School choice and student assignment policies determine who gets to go to which school, where and how parents and students apply to school, what rights students have to remain in a school they have chosen, and what rights students have to transfer between schools.

For more information on the community meetings, contact: ward6boundaryfeeders@gmail.com (ward6boundaryfeeders at gmail dot com)

More information and materials from the DME on the Boundaries and Feeder Review Process here.

Chancellor’s Parent Cabinet, Meeting at Amidon-Bowen, Candidates Forum

Dear Capitol Hill Public Schools Parent Organization members,

DCPS recently announced the formation of a Chancellor’s Parent Cabinet (http://dcps.dc.gov/DCPS/Parents+and+Community/Chancellors+Parent+Cabinet). The Chancellor’s Parent Cabinet is intended to serve as a mechanism for parent leaders to directly inform the Chancellor around system wide policies affecting schools. The Parent Cabinet will be comprised of 16-24 parents who will serve as volunteers. Applications can be submitted on-line, and are due February 11, 2014. Please share this information with your parent community.

The February 12th CHPSPO meeting will be held at Amidon-Bowen at 401 I St., SW. The agenda is attached.

Finally, please continue to spread the word about the February 20th Ward 6 City Council Candidates Forum that CHPSPO is co-sponsoring with the Eastern Market Metro Community Association and the Capitol Hill Group Ministry. The flyer for the forum is attached.

Thank you.

Suzanne Wells

021214 CHPSPO Agenda.docx

Ward 6 Candidates Forum 022014].docx