Danny Harris is a DC-based photographer, DJ, and collector of stories. He launched People’s District, a blog that tells a people’s history of DC by sharing the stories and images of its residents. You can follow People’s District on Twitter @PeoplesDistrict, and can read his previous columns here.
“As parents, my partner and I were looking for a different kind of educational experience in this city for our kids. It saddens me to see that the trends in education are away from the concept that learning can be great fun and towards solely the acquisition of knowledge. I think that learning should be fun. When you do that for kids, they will want to continue to learn as they grow up.
“While there are lots of strong schools in D.C., we wanted a place with project based learning that related to the real world. Before Two Rivers, there was only one other school in D.C. doing that, Capital City Public Charter School, which was not in this neighborhood.
“We organized a grass-roots effort with other parents to open this school. As they say, it really does take a village. There were a large number of people who gathered and volunteered their time and resources to get this started. It took a lot of time and effort, but we worked together to create this place out of love seven years ago.
“For me, it is a dream come true to be able to help found and run a school that has as its critical components, all the things that I care most about. I have always felt that it is important that kids learn more than just the nuts and bolts. For example, we live in an amazing city and part of our job at the school is to take advantage of those resources when teaching our kids.
“One of my favorite parts of what I do is standing at the door in the morning with the other administrators to greet the kids. It’s important for me because it reminds me of why we are here – to connect with these amazing kids. We want kids to be excited about learning and realize how fun it can be.”
Jessica Wodatch is the Executive Director of Two Rivers Public Charter School.