The Ward 4 Education Alliance brings together Ward 4 parents, students, educators, and community members to share information and advocate for continued improvement in the quality of education in Ward 4 DCPS schools. (Formerly ForWard4)
August 2, 2016 Meeting
Meeting topics for the coming year:
1. Ward 4 and at large school board election forum
2. School Fair in January
Issues to be addressed in the coming year
1. Outstanding modernizations: Coolidge, Lafayette, Roosevelt, MacFarland
-Coolidge modernization is undergoing a feasibility study, to be submitted to public at end of August.
2. Parent engagement, specifically building parent organization capacity to give parents a voice, fundraising, and engaging ELL families
3. Guest speakers from city agencies: DOH (particularly about school nurse program for upcoming school year), DCPS officials
4. Parent Transportation resources
5. Coordinated support for homeless students (ex., OSSE, CFSA, etc.). Better understand who supports students at various levels, from school to central office.
6. Before care and student safety (thinking about kids being dropped off in early morning, unsupervised)
7. Supporting English Language Learners
8. Coordination of supports inside of schools, what are the privacy issues, to what extent can information be shared, how are home visit programs doing?
9. Overview of rights students and families might have; support to schools in having the resources to meet the need.
Chancellor Selection Process: Criteria for ideal candidate
1. Strong understanding of instructional pedagogy, instructional background
2. Desires students to develop strong citizenship skills.
3. Familiarity with managing a comparably sized school system. Person must have the demonstrated ability to manage a staff of thousands and a billion dollar budget.
4. Possess strong "soft skills," has demonstrated ability to grow talent, hire to their weaknesses; evidence of strong relationships with union, principals, and teachers
5. Demonstrated track record of closing achievement gap, has plan for closing achievement gap in a changing system
6. Is reflective, and learns from mistakes
7. Engages community in policy decisions; clear examples of how the community has been involved in a change initiative. There should be proof that the candidate has accepted input and been willing to act on it.
8. Demonstrated achievement for ELL and Special Education students
9. Committed to equity across the system.
10. Visionary with creative ideas, recognizes how DC has been ahead of the national practice; can see multiple solutions to various problems, and tailor solutions to unique context.
11. Dedicated to supporting the publicly managed system of public schools, not looking to privatize.
12. A commitment to support stability – reduce the high turnover of teachers and principals-
13. Willingness to explore expansion of dual immersion as a way to support ELL students.
14. A person who has a large approach, understands there is not one solution and is willing to allow for more flexibility at the school level.
15. Commitment and courage to truly educate our students in the broadest sense, well beyond what is measured on the accountability tests.
Chancellor Selection: Deal Breaker
1. No teaching experience
2. Has to have demonstrated strong support for a public system that includes neighborhood schools.
3. Must have experience in changing a system with a persistent achievement gap
4. Must have been a school leader
5. Lack of vision, unwillingness to try new skills
6. Has to possess the soft skills needed to relate well to government officials, employees and parents in this complex system.
7. Must have demonstrated ability to manage a large complex educational system preferably in the public sector
Coolidge Community Cabinet
MacFarland Middle School AP-Principal chosen
Modernization Planning for Coolidge HS underway
Visit this website https://dcpsplanning.wordpress.com/category/coolidge/ to get updates on the Coolidge planning