Michelle Obama visits Ballou Senior High School in 2011, encouraging them to work hard to get the most out of their opportunities for education. (Courtesy photo)
Michelle Obama visits Ballou Senior High School in 2011, encouraging them to work hard to get the most out of their opportunities for education. (Courtesy photo)

For the first time in its history, the entire senior class at Ballou Senior High School in Southeast — 189 students in all — has applied for college, with several already receiving acceptance letters.

While one student has been accepted at five schools, another has received 11 acceptance letters. In addition, approximately 100 more Ballou juniors took the SAT this year compared to 2016.

“I think the major story we’re getting from this is that it’s not just this one class, it’s the entire building that’s shifting toward college,” Ballou Vice Principal Shamele Straughter told WJLA-TV (Channel 7.

Chancellor’s Community Meetings

Chancellor Antwan Wilson will be meeting with the community in all eight wards where he will discuss the next direction for D.C.’s public schools. Also, with the current strategic plan for DCPS ending in June, school officials will be embarking on the launch of a new plan for the 2017-18 academic year.

The community meetings will be held as follows:

Ward 4
Thursday, March 16 at Roosevelt High School
4301 13th Street NW

Ward 5
Tuesday, March 21 at Luke C. Moore High School
1001 Monroe Street NE

Ward 3
Monday, March 27 at Deal Middle School
3815 Fort Drive NW

Ward 8
Thursday, April 6 at Turner Elementary School
3264 Stanton Road SE

Ward 6
Tuesday, April 11 at Eastern High School
1700 East Capitol Street NE

Ward 1
Thursday, April 13 at Columbia Heights Education Campus
3101 16th Street NW

Ward 2
Monday, April 24 at SWW @ Francis-Stevens
2425 N Street NW

ESSA Discussions

The DC State Board of Education will share feedback from a series of community meetings with the Office of the Superintendent of Education as it prepares for the vote on a final plan for the Every Student Succeeds Act.

Later this month, SBOE will hold an additional working session to go over the final plan with OSSE, as well as an additional public meeting to consider approval of the plan.

Chancellor Antwan Wilson will join the SBOE on March 14 to discuss priorities for the city’s public schools, and a working session will be held Tuesday, March 14 at 4 p.m. at 441 4th St. NW, Room 1117. A public meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, March 22 at 441 4th St. NW, the Old Council Chambers, at 5:30 p.m.

For additional information about ESSA, including upcoming engagement opportunities and previous meeting materials, visit sboe.dc.gov/essa and osse.dc.gov/essa.

Enrollment Increase

Public school enrollment in D.C. has continued its upward trend with enrollment, increasing for the eighth consecutive year.

In releasing the audited enrollment numbers for the current school year, state Superintendent of Education Hanseul Kang said the increase equates to about 3 percent over the 2015-16 school year, with enrollment gains recorded in both traditional public and public charter schools.

“District families recognize the substantial investments we have made in public education and the improvements our schools have made as a result,” said Mayor Muriel Bowser. “More and more families want to be part of the positive, sustained growth we are seeing as a District and show their confidence in the quality of education we provide by enrolling their children in our schools.”

DCPS Honors International Women’s Day

Statement from John Davis, Chief of Schools, D.C. Public Schools:

“DCPS schools are and will continue to be safe places for all students and all people in our communities, regardless of immigration status, race, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.

“While some may [have planned] to attend the March 8 walk-out on “International Women’s Day,” all students and staff were expected to be in school throughout the day so that teaching and learning can continue.

“We respect the right to self-expression and peaceful protest in support of gender equality. We [encouraged] staff and students to use this as an opportunity to celebrate and acknowledge the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women through classroom discussion and activities.”

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