DCPCSA May 2013 Newsletter
 
 

dcpcsa_logo DC_Association_of Chartered_Public_Schools_Quality_Circle
May Newsletter 2013
  1. Exclusive Interview with Skip McKoy, Chairman D.C. Public Charter School Board
  2. D.C. mental health system failing city's youth
  3. Putting literacy at the head of the line in D.C.
  4. For public charter schools, crowdfunding can be a challenge
  5. D.C. Council education committee flexes its muscles on boundaries
  6. What 'education influentials' think will - and won't - happen
  7. Motivation Matters
  8. Senators Kirk, Durbin Introduce Bill to Expand Successful Charter Schools
  9. D.C. mayor still discriminating against charter school students
  10. Two D.C. high schools dare to require deep research
  11. Quiet, critical school reform at D.C. Public Schools
  12. Thurgood Marshall Academy Gains National Prominence
  13. Educating students to succeed in the global economy
  14. 3-Minute Interview: Author Mirta Meltzer
  15. D.C. tops nation in preschool spending
  16. Friendship students shine at STEM, engineering events
  17. Standout students shine at STARS Gala
  18. State funding for preschool drops as Obama calls for expansion
  19. D.C. spending plan cuts programs and staff at dozens of schools
  20. Apprenticeships could help U.S. workers gain a competitive edge
  21. Gray nominates two new candidates for D.C. Public Charter School Board
  22. Grading the Gettysburg Address: App-alling!
  23. 22,000 Kids on D.C. Charter School Waitlist
  24. D.C. summer school expanded in passage of $241m supplemental budget
  25. Charter board approves two new schools and renews two established ones
  26. Gray releases 16 D.C. public school buildings for reuse by charters
  27. Many teachers say they need training in Common Core standards, poll says
  28. D.C. charter school waitlists vary widely
  29. Waiting Lists at DC Charter Schools Exceed 22,000 Names
  30. Proposed charter school in DC would advance language study
  31. D.C. charter school would teach all but math and English online
  32. Digital Trends Shifting the Role of Teachers
  33. ACE Report Underscores Lack of Diversity Among Graduates Earning Bachelor’s Degrees
  34. D.C. charter board approves two new schools
  35. State education chiefs oppose delay in high-stakes test repercussions
  36. Do Charter Schools Work?
  37. Teaching Students Better Online Research Skills
  38. Montgomery middle school students learn storytelling through filmmaking
  39. D.C. Bets Big on Common Core
  40. D.C. Council must stop micromanaging public schools
  41. Urban school reform is really about land development (not kids)
  42. The serious risks of rushing new teacher evaluation systems
  43. That's My Take: DC Charter Schools
  44. Process for Charters to Inherit Vacant DCPS Buildings Gets a Wee Bit Easier
  45. D.C. opens a door for charter schools
  46. D.C. high school students treat senior citizens to free haircuts, manicures
  47. Maya Angelou charter school wipes out zeros for students
  48. A new voice for D.C. parents in shaping schools policy?/a>
  49. How school reform preserves the 'status quo' - and what real change would look like
  50. More Hispanic children need to enroll in preschool
  51. Chris Obermeyer hopes Woodrow Wilson High School's Pride celebration becomes the model
  52. 'Industry Day' Sheds Light on STEM Careers
  53. Education is for parents too
  54. Why charter school myths are spreading
  55. Announcements
  56. Save the date
  57. Grants
  58. Resources
Exclusive Interview with Skip McKoy, Chairman D.C. Public Charter School Board
By Mark Lerner
Examiner

May 13, 2013- I had the pleasure of sitting down recently with the newly elected Chairman of the DC Public Charter School Board, John H. “Skip” McKoy, who is Director, Programmatic Initiatives for Fight For Children. In answer to my first question he wasted no time in getting into the details of the current state of the District’s 57 public charter schools. Read more

D.C. mental health system failing city's youth
By Eric P. Newcomer
Washington Examiner

May 9, 2013- Three-quarters of youth referred for mental health services in the District don't receive help within one week, as the law requires, a new study has found. Read more

Putting literacy at the head of the line in D.C.
By Lecester Johnson and Terri Lee Freeman
Washington Post

May 10, 2013- Darnetta Hollis, a mother of four, survived domestic violence and overcame homelessness to earn her high school diploma at age 29. Read more

For public charter schools, crowdfunding can be a challenge
By Mohana Ravindranath
Washington Post

May 13, 2013- When the weather’s nice enough, students at Cesar Chavez Public Charter Schools for Public Policy’s Prep Campus in Washington’s Columbia Heights neighborhood walk single-file up Kenyon Avenue through a narrow alleyway into the Bruce Monroe Community Park — a public park — for recess. Read more

D.C. Council education committee flexes its muscles on boundaries
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

May 14, 2013- The D.C. Council’s education committee stepped into a looming fight over school boundaries last week when it voted unanimously to ensure that parents get at least a year’s notice before boundary changes take effect. Read more

What 'education influentials' think will - and won't - happen
By Valerie Strauss
Washington Post

May 16, 2013- A new report about what people called “education influentials” think will happen in the world of education says: That 87 percent of insiders think that the No Child Left Behind law won’t be reauthorized until at least 2015. Read more

Motivation Matters
By Paul Fain
Inside Higher Ed

May 20, 2013- Academic preparation isn’t the only factor in college readiness. Also helping to determine whether students get to graduation are social behaviors, like whether they show up for class, engage with professors and make eye contact. A new assessment from the Education Testing Service (ETS) seeks to measure those non-academic variables. Read more

Senators Kirk, Durbin Introduce Bill to Expand Successful Charter Schools
By Press Release
eNews Park Forest

May 24, 2013- U.S. Senators Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) yesterday introduced legislation that would expand the Charter School Program at the Department of Education (DOE) making the expansion and replication of successful charter school models eligible for federal funding. The bill – the All Students Achieving through Reform (All-STAR) Act – also takes several steps to strengthen public charter school accountability, transparency, and governance. Read more

D.C. mayor still discriminating against charter school students
By Robert Crane
Washington Examiner

May 13, 2013- D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray pledged throughout his 2010 mayoral campaign to end years of systematic city underfunding of the District's public charter school students compared to their peers in the city's traditional public school system. Yet, after three budgets, he has failed to deliver on his promise. Read more

Two D.C. high schools dare to require deep research
By Jay Mathews
Washington Post

May 9, 2013- I often despair over the sorry state of writing and research in our high schools. Only private schools and public schools with the International Baccalaureate diploma program require research papers of significant length. Two million new high school graduates head to college every year — but only 10 percent, by my reckoning — have had to write a long paper or do a major project. Read more

Quiet, critical school reform at D.C. Public Schools
By Kaya Henderson
Washington Post

April 28, 2013- As D.C. Public Schools (DCPS) enters the second year of working toward the goals outlined in our strategic plan, “A Capital Commitment,” I often am asked whether the district is still leading the way in education reform. People must think that if we are not angering the community, clashing with unions, creating discord in our schools and making headlines, we must not be making change. Read more

Thurgood Marshall Academy Gains National Prominence
By Dorothy Rowley
Washington Informer

May 1, 2013- When it comes to raising the bar and educating minorities in the District of Columbia, Thurgood Marshall Academy in Southeast has stepped up to the plate. And, in the process has gained national prominence closing the achievement gap among black male students. Read more

Educating students to succeed in the global economy
By Linda Moore
Washington Examiner

April 27, 2013- Fresh off our annual lottery -- which saw 1,000 applications for 30 open spots -- I found myself thinking about the skills students will need for success as adults. Read more

3-Minute Interview: Author Mirta Meltzer
By Steve Contorno
Washington Examiner

April 27, 2013- Meltzer is an art teacher at Elsie Whitlow Stokes Community Freedom Public Charter School in the District and is originally from Argentina. She recently published her first children's book, "My Hands," which is written in both English and Spanish. Read more

D.C. tops nation in preschool spending
By Rachel Baye
Washington Examiner

April 29, 2013- The District spent more on each of its preschool students than any state in the country last school year, according to a report released Monday. Schools receive $14,938 for each pre-kindergarten student, including $13,974 from the District and $964 from the federal government, according to the report by the National Institute for Early Education Research at Rutgers University. Read more

Friendship students shine at STEM, engineering events
By Capital Community News

May 23, 2013- (page 123) Friendship Pubic Charter School, which invests heavily in STEM-- science, technology, engineering and math-- academic disciplines, had students compete and win at the DC STEM Fair at a national engineering competition. Read more

Standout students shine at STARS Gala
By Mark Lerner
Washington Examiner

May 16, 2013- The D.C. Association of Chartered Public Schools held its third annual STARS Tribute Gala on May 9, to celebrate the successes of the 43 percent of District public school students who are educated at public charter schools, and their teachers, mentors and parents. Read more

State funding for preschool drops as Obama calls for expansion
By Michael Alison Chandler
Washington Post

April 29, 2013- State funding for preschool across the country dropped last school year after a decade of growth, tapping the brakes on the quality and reach of programs as President Obama has called for a massive expansion of early childhood education, according to a national survey scheduled for release Monday. Read more

D.C. spending plan cuts programs and staff at dozens of schools
By Emma Brown and Tim Craig
Washington Post

May 2, 2013- When D.C. Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson announced in January that she wanted to close 15 schools, she said the downsizing would help create a stronger school system with rich academic offerings, a system that could compete with the city’s charter schools. But Henderson’s proposed fiscal 2014 budget has raised concerns about her ability to fulfill that promise. Read more

Apprenticeships could help U.S. workers gain a competitive edge
By Stuart E. Eizenstat and Robert I. Lerman
Washington Post

May 3, 2013- The United States is on the verge of a manufacturing comeback . The domestic energy boom and low natural gas prices, together with competitive wage rates, can lead to a resurgence and the potential revival of goods-producing industries that could provide a great opportunity to increase middle-class wages, reduce income inequality and expand social mobility. Read more

Gray nominates two new candidates for D.C. Public Charter School Board
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

May 7, 2013- Mayor Vincent C. Gray has nominated two candidates to fill vacancies on the D.C. Public Charter School Board, which is responsible for authorizing new charter schools and closing poor performers. Read more

Grading the Gettysburg Address: App-alling!
By David Lebedoff
Washington Post

May 3, 2013- “Imagine taking a college exam, and, instead of handing in a blue book and getting a grade from a professor a few weeks later, clicking the ‘send’ button when you are done and receiving a grade back instantly, your essay scored by a software program.” Read more
 
Charter board approves two new schools and renews two established ones
By Mark Lerner

May 21, 2013- At a D.C. Public Charter Board monthly meeting that nearly lasted into the following day the body approved two new schools out of nine accepted applications. Lee Montessori was the first charter given the green light to open in the fall 2014, a PreK3 to 6th grade school that will enroll 228 students and be located in Ward 5 or Ward 7. Read more

Gray releases 16 D.C. public school buildings for reuse by charters
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

May 20, 2013- The District plans to allow public charter schools to enter into long-term leases for a dozen old public school buildings, some of which are traditional public schools that are slated to close by next year, Mayor Vincent C. Gray said Monday. Read more

22,000 Kids on D.C. Charter School Waitlist
By Katherine Mangu-Ward
Washington Post

May 3, 2013- Last year in the District of Columbia, 45,557 kids attended mainline public schools. (During the same period, 34,673 kids were enrolled in charters, or 43 percent of the total public school population.) Read more

D.C. summer school expanded in passage of $241m supplemental budget
By Alan Blindero
Washington Examiner

May 7, 2013- The D.C. Council backed a $241 million supplemental budget on Tuesday, opening up thousands of additional seats in summer school and funneling millions of dollars into housing initiatives. Read more

Many teachers say they need training in Common Core standards, poll says
By Lyndsey Layton
Washington Post

May 3, 2013- Most public school teachers feel unprepared to teach math and reading to the Common Core standards that are rolling out in 45 states and the District, according to a poll of 800 teachers released Friday by the American Federation of Teachers. Read more

D.C. charter school waitlists vary widely
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

May 6, 2013- Charter school waiting lists vary widely across the District, according to data released Monday by the D.C. Public Charter School Board that suggests demand tends to be greatest for early childhood programs and schools rated high-performing. Read more

Waiting Lists at DC Charter Schools Exceed 22,000 Names
By DC Public Charter School Board

May 7, 2013- There are 22,130 names on waiting lists at DC charter schools for the upcoming school year, according to self-reported data from the city’s 57 charter schools compiled by DC Public Charter School Board. Read more

Proposed charter school in DC would advance language study
By Associated Press
Washington Post

May 17, 2013- Students in language immersion programs at public charter elementary schools may have a chance to continue their studies if a proposed middle and high school becomes reality. Read more

D.C. charter school would teach all but math and English online
By Rachel Baye
Washington Examiner

May 19, 2013- A controversial computer-based learning model is competing with eight other proposals to be one of the next charter schools approved for the District. Read more

Digital Trends Shifting the Role of Teachers
By Amanda M. Fairbanks
Education Week

May 21, 2013- Chris Merkert, a veteran teacher who has spent nearly two decades in the classroom, is constantly tweaking his lesson plans. It's become a kind of obsession. Read more

ACE Report Underscores Lack of Diversity Among Graduates Earning Bachelor’s Degrees
By Jamaal Abdul-Alim
Diverse

May 16, 2013- A new report released Thursday cites lack of diversity among those who earned a bachelor’s degree in the 2007-2008 school year — as well as disparities in pay once students enter the world of work — and says things will not change until barriers that face minority students are addressed. Read more

D.C. charter board approves two new schools
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

May 21 2013- The D.C. Public Charter School Board on Monday approved two new schools and rejected seven others, citing concerns such as inconsistent budgets and overly vague academic goals and curricula. Read more

State education chiefs oppose delay in high-stakes test repercussions
By Lyndsey Layton
Washington Post

May 21, 2013- A small group of state education officials is pushing back against a call by teachers unions for a moratorium on using standardized tests for evaluating students or teachers until states have completely implemented Common Core standards, a new way of teaching math and reading in grades kindergarten through 12th. Read more

Do Charter Schools Work?
By Ray Fisman
Slate

May 22, 2013- On June 4, 1991, Minnesota Gov. Arne Carlson signed into law a bill that set in motion one of the most significant—and controversial—education reform movements in modern history. Minnesota’s charter school law allowed educators and other concerned individuals to apply to the state for permission to operate a government-funded school outside of the public education system. Read more

Teaching Students Better Online Research Skills
By Leslie Harris O'Hanlon
Education Week

May 22, 2013-Sara Shaw, an elementary school teacher in Avon, Mass., realized she needed to teach online research skills several years ago when her students kept turning in projects riddled with misinformation. Read more

Montgomery middle school students learn storytelling through filmmaking
By Lynh Bui
Washington Post

May 22, 2013- Downtown Silver Spring isn’t exactly Hollywood, but for Montgomery County middle school students, it was transformed into a scene as thrilling as any L.A. movie premiere Wednesday. Read more

D.C. Bets Big on Common Core
By Catherine Gewertz
Education Week

May 21, 2013- The big clock in Dowan McNair-Lee's 8th grade classroom is silent, but she can hear the minutes ticking away nonetheless. On this day, like any other, the clock is a constant reminder of how little time she has to prepare her students—for spring tests, and for high school and all that lies beyond it. Read more

D.C. Council must stop micromanaging public schools
By Editorial Board
Washington Post

May 21, 2013- ONE OF THE FIRST things D.C. Council member David A. Catania (I-At Large) did after taking over the newly constituted education committee was host a dinner aimed at establishing a new tone of collaboration for those involved in D.C. public education. Read more

Urban school reform is really about land development (not kids)
By Valerie Strauss
Washington Post

May 28, 2013- Here is a provocative piece from Leslie T. Fenwick, dean of the Howard University School of Education and a professor of education policy, about what is really behind urban school reform. Read more

The serious risks of rushing new teacher evaluation systems
By Valerie Strauss
Washington Post

May 23 2013- Increasingly we are hearing concerns from educators that new education reforms are being rushed, including the Common Core State Standards. At the same time, new teacher evaluation systems are being put into place as well. Read more

That's My Take: DC Charter Schools
By Duffy Dyer
Fox 5

May 2013- Have you ever felt cheated? Did you ever wait in a long line, hungry and thirsty, only to be told when you got to the head of the line that there was no more food or drink? Well, you might know how the D.C. charter schools feel. Read more

Process for Charters to Inherit Vacant DCPS Buildings Gets a Wee Bit Easier
By Aaron Wiener
Washington City Paper

May 20, 2013-A year ago, my redoubtable predecessor chronicled the hurdles charter schools face when they try to move into vacant D.C. Public Schools buildings. The administration of ex-Mayor Adrian Fenty closed 23 DCPS schools, but managed to get around rules giving charters top priority on the buildings, and at least 18 were handed over to city agencies or developers, leaving charters scrambling to build or lease other spaces. Read more

D.C. opens a door for charter schools
By Editorial Board
Washington Post

May 23, 2013- A LAW on the books in the District since the mid-1990s gives charter schools first priority to vacated public school buildings. Sadly, that hasn’t prevented city officials from hoarding the properties, selling them off to private interests or, most appalling, letting them rot while deserving charter schools scrounge for space or turn students away. Read more

D.C. high school students treat senior citizens to free haircuts, manicures
by Emma Brown
Washington Post

May 26, 2013- Darril Phillips was ready to be pampered. The 82-year-old sat patiently in the basement of Sarah’s Circle, a nonprofit senior citizen’s center in Adams Morgan. She watched as the team of beauticians unpacked their boxes, revealing fruity-smelling facial scrubs and nail polish in every color of the rainbow. Read more

Maya Angelou charter school wipes out zeros for students
By Rachel Baye
Washington Examiner

May 28, 2013- A student at Maya Angelou Public Charter School can fail to complete any assignment or even not show up at school and still get a 40 percent for the quarter under a new grading policy. Read more

A new voice for D.C. parents in shaping schools policy?
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

May 28, 2013- Fresh off his loss in April’s at-large D.C. Council race, Matthew Frumin is returning to his roots as an education activist. Frumin is seeking to organize a new advocacy group devoted to unifying and amplifying the voice of parents in shaping D.C. schools policy. Read more

How school reform preserves the 'status quo' - and what real change would look like
By Valerie Strauss,
Washington Post

May 29, 2013- If you follow the education policy debate at all, you know that critics are often called “defenders of the status quo” by people pushing market-based school reforms. Here is a piece about why it is actually the reforms that are preserving the status quo — and what real reform would actually look like. Read more

More Hispanic children need to enroll in preschool
By Lyndsey Layton
Washington Post

May 29, 2013- Record numbers of Hispanic students are staying in high school, graduating and enrolling in college, but they lag behind other groups in preschool attendance, Education Secretary Arne Duncan said Wednesday morning. Read more

Chris Obermeyer hopes Woodrow Wilson High School's Pride celebration becomes the model
By John Riley
Metro Weekly

May 30, 2013- In just a few days, Chris Obermeyer's weeks of planning will come to fruition with Woodrow Wilson Senior High School becoming the first D.C. public high school to host its own version of Pride – in the school's atrium during lunch on Wednesday, June 5. Read more

'Industry Day' Sheds Light on STEM Careers
By Dorothy Rowley
Washington Informer

May 29, 2013- Nearly 70 executives from District-area industries recently took time away from their busy schedules to mentor students at a local high school and bolster their interests in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) careers. Read more

Education is for parents too
By Esther J. Cepeda
Washington Post

May 29, 2013-When I saw a recent Pew Hispanic Center report with the sunny title, “Hispanic High School Graduates Pass Whites in Rate of College Enrollment,” I thought, “What’s the catch?” There was none on this exact point. Read more

Why charter school myths are spreading
By Eva Moskowitz
New York Daily News

May 28, 2013- The teachers union recently accused City Hall of giving the Success Academy charter schools I run favorable treatment — a charge echoed by all the Democratic candidates present at a Tuesday mayoral debate. Read more
 
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