Sweetheart of Sweethearts: The Wilkinson Deal

At 6 pm on March 30, 2021, DGS (DC's department of general services, which operates all DC's publicly owned buildings) and the deputy mayor for education (DME) held a combined surplus/disposition meeting for the closed DCPS school, Wilkinson, at 2330 Pomeroy Road SE. What followed was the only public outreach--exactly 1 hour--by public agencies in … Continue reading Sweetheart of Sweethearts: The Wilkinson Deal

Upcoming Education Events: Federal Money Planning, Hearings, And Ward 3 Expansion Feedback

Mayor Bowser’s surprise announcement on April 29 of a $14 million infusion into DCPS’s budget has set the tone for what will likely be a busy and contentious May on many education fronts. Defying 11th hour legislation introduced the next day (and also slated to force funding of some, though not all, DCPS schools that … Continue reading Upcoming Education Events: Federal Money Planning, Hearings, And Ward 3 Expansion Feedback

Fixing DCPS School Budgets (And DC Democracy) NOW

On Friday April 2, there was a (hastily called) hearing on widespread shortfalls in DCPS school budgets. Ward education councils were the only public witnesses—while the chancellor testified afterward. (To see public testimony, go here and scroll through.) The minority of council members who attended the hearing (Robert White, Mary Cheh, Christina Henderson, Brianne Nadeau, … Continue reading Fixing DCPS School Budgets (And DC Democracy) NOW

The March 2021 Auditor’s Report: Or, How DC Fails To Provide All Students Their Educations

[Ed. Note: Over just a few years, DC's auditor has produced many pages detailing shockingly poor practices in DC's public schools, whether mis-use of at risk funds, inequitable modernizations, high school admissions bias, and segregation and funding inequities arising from school choice. The auditor's latest report on DC's publicly funded schools, released on March 10, … Continue reading The March 2021 Auditor’s Report: Or, How DC Fails To Provide All Students Their Educations

March Madness (DC School Governance Edition)

--This afternoon, starting at 4 pm, the DC council is holding a hearing on the massive report by the DC auditor concerning how our office of the state superintendent of education (OSSE) has been handling education data. In a word: badly. In more words: incompletely, inaccurately, poorly compared to other states, and possibly without regard … Continue reading March Madness (DC School Governance Edition)

Looking Back on DC Education Reform 10 Years Later, Part 2: Test Cheats

[Ed. Note: In part 1 of this series, semi-retired educator Richard P. Phelps provided a first-hand account of what went down in DCPS as ed reformers in the early days of mayoral control pushed standardized tests; teacher evaluations based on those tests; and harsh school penalties. This second part looks at the cheating scandals that … Continue reading Looking Back on DC Education Reform 10 Years Later, Part 2: Test Cheats

Looking Back on DC Education Reform 10 Years Later, Part 1: The Grand Tour

[Ed. Note: As DC's office of the state superintendent of education (OSSE) seeks a waiver of PARCC testing again (recall that OSSE waived PARCC last school year due to the pandemic) and the DC auditor just released a bombshell report of poor stewardship of DC's education data, it is time to revisit how standardized test … Continue reading Looking Back on DC Education Reform 10 Years Later, Part 1: The Grand Tour

The Education Mysteries, Tale #4: The Peabody Flood Of 2020

On the evening of September 28 (and/or possibly the early morning hours of September 29, 2020), the ceiling above the third floor atrium at DCPS’s Peabody early childhood campus collapsed. As it fell, the ceiling somehow interacted with a water line, causing water to flood the entire building from the third floor down to its … Continue reading The Education Mysteries, Tale #4: The Peabody Flood Of 2020