Washington, DC

From Howard University:

“Following a comprehensive national search, Howard University today proudly announces the appointment of Phylicia Rashad as dean of the recently reestablished College of Fine Arts, effective July 1, 2021. In this role, she will report to Provost Anthony K. Wutoh. An alumna of Howard University, Rashad graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor’s in fine arts. Read More

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“Dear PoPville,

A homeless person camped next to our kids’ school was recently arrested for “charges including assault with a dangerous weapon, carrying a pistol without a license, possession of a large capacity Ammunition Feeding Device, possession of Unregistered Ammunition, and receiving Stolen Property.” I feel for the remaining inhabitants, but it seems like it’s time for residents of this encampment to go somewhere where they are not harassing elementary school students, as potential dangers to students now seem to outweigh COVID risks. Do readers have any suggestions for getting District leaders to listen to and act on our concerns?”

Readers pass on a letter to the Seaton Community: Read More

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“Dear PoPville,

There will be a rally for opening DC Schools this Saturday, 3/13, 2-4 pm at Mayor Bowser’s office (1350 Pennsylvania Ave NW). Anyone who supports this cause is welcome to attend! It’s past time to open schools. Kids have already lost way to much.”

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From the Mayor’s Office:

“Today, DC Health announced that beginning the week of January 25, in-person staff, including teachers and support staff, at DC Public Schools (DCPS) and DC Public Charter Schools will begin receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.

This week, DCPS teachers and staff who are already reporting in-person, or who will return for in-person instruction in Term 3, will receive an email outlining the process for scheduling a vaccination appointment. Vaccinations will begin next week and will take place at Dunbar High School. DC Health and DCPS are partnering with Children’s National Hospital to vaccinate DCPS staff. Appointments will be scheduled directly with Children’s National Hospital. 

DC Public Charter Schools will receive guidance from the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) regarding the vaccination program expected to start on January 25 for teachers and staff who are reporting in person.

Starting on January 25, other workers necessary for the preservation of societal functions will begin vaccinations, such as other public school staff and members of the Metropolitan Police Department. In addition, “Continuity of District Government” personnel will start their vaccinations next week with Kaiser. Read More

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Photo by Erin

“Dear PoPville,

I am a parent of a 2nd grade student. I’m trying to find out what schools parents have had good experiences with regarding dyslexia. I’m particularly interested in whether the PoPville community (of teachers or parents) knows of any DC public or charter schools that do a good job with evidence-based interventions. I am particularly interested in schools that do 80-90 minutes per day of instructional time in phonics and/or connected texts with dyslexic kids in early elementary.”

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Photo by Erin

From the Mayor’s Office:

“This evening, after DC Public Schools and the Washington Teachers’ Union reached an agreement on a return to in-person learning, Mayor Bowser released the following statement:

“Since the summer, we have worked tirelessly to create a plan that allows for the safe return of in-person learning — a plan that meets the needs of students, educators, and families. While CARE classrooms have been limited, we know that for many families they have provided a critical lifeline. Still, we know that the best option for our young people is in-person learning, and that has remained our focus. The road ahead is long, and there is much learning loss to be made up for, but this agreement brings us another step closer to getting our students where they need to be – in the classroom, surrounded by educators and friends, feeling challenged and loved.”

From the Washington Teachers’ Union:

“The Washington Teachers’ Union (WTU) is pleased to announce an agreement with DC Public Schools on a Memorandum of Agreement that lays out conditions needed to return to in-person learning. Read More

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via GoFundMe

Thanks to Lindsay for writing: “Mr. Canada is the garden teacher at Stoddert Elementary in Glover Park. Mr. Canada does not encounter strangers; from the second you meet him, he is sharing food from his garden and engaging in meaningful conversation. He has patiently worked toward resolving this medical situation on his own, never remotely hinting at his daily obstacles, let alone asking for help. Hoping those of us in a position can contribute and take some of the burden off this amazing human!”

The GoFundMe:

“It is impossible to spend time with Curt Canada and not feel grateful for his huge heart. He is a soulful man who feels so deeply, but I have never seen him fully smile. He always positions his mouth in a way to prevent anyone from seeing his missing teeth because of how self conscious he is. On top of that, his inability to chew his food has started to seriously impact his physical health. I met Curt this past Spring and got to know him throughout the year on my near daily trips to get some fresh air, which often took me by the garden. Curt is one of the most generous and loving people I have ever met, and I feel so incredibly humbled and honored to play a small role in helping him raise funds to be able to afford dental implants. Please take a moment to read Curt’s own words below and help in any way you can.

Words from Curt Canada Read More

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Photo by Diane Krauthamer

Ed. Note: Also a request for Rapid COVID-19 tests? “Wondering if anyone knows of any places in DC to get a rapid COVID test? I know Preston’s Pharmacy in Arlington offers the test, but curious to know what some other options might be.”

From the Mayor’s Office:

“Mayor Bowser outlined new asymptomatic coronavirus (COVID-19) testing protocols for students and staff participating in DC Public Schools (DCPS) in-person programming. This pilot for schools with CARE or In-Person Learning Classrooms will include in-school testing for students and mailed testing kits for staff. The pilot will begin next week, and tests are at no cost to students or staff.

“We are proud of the very robust testing system we have built in DC, and now we can use that infrastructure to support this program,” said Mayor Bowser. “There is a sense of urgency to get more students back in school with their teachers, peers, and school community, and we are hopeful that these new protocols move us one step closer to reopening.”

DC Health will manage on-site testing of students who attend CARE Classrooms at their schools. Students may receive a PCR nasal-swab test, administered by DC Health medical staff, approximately every 10 days. Read More

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via GoFundMe

Ed. Note: We spoke about some other ways to give back yesterday here.

Thanks to Dan Winston for sharing this important fundraiser: “In these challenging times, it’s important for us to support each other. @garrisondcps has set up this @gofundme for families. Please donate if you are able to do so.”

The GoFundMe says:

“As a Title I school, more than half of our students are from low-income families and nearly 25 percent have special needs. We have received unbelievably generous support from our community over the past six months, support that has provided essential food, rent, and childcare assistance for Garrison families through a long, difficult summer.

We are grateful beyond measure, but as we confront an uncertain new school year, we are asking for help once again. Our $20,000 goal will ensure we are able to do three essential things: Read More

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