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D.C. EDUCATION BRIEFS: Task Force Focus

The application period to serve on the D.C. State Board of Education’s new High School Graduation Requirements Task Force ended on June 23, with each of the applications being made available for public review.

Ushering in a new wave of transparency, the task force will review, analyze and, as necessary, make thoughtful, implementable recommendations to adjust the city’s high school graduation requirements for both DCPS and public charter students.

Task force meetings will begin in July and continue on a biweekly basis through spring 2018.

Report Overviews

SBOE student representative Alex Dorosin of Wilson High School recently presented an overview at this month’s SBOE working session, of the second annual report of the Student Advisory Committee.

The SAC also met four times over the course of the 2016-17 school year and selected seven key topics that they feel can be changed or improved in the D.C. education system.

The proposals submitted by the SAC focused on graduation requirements, security, access to humanities and civic engagement courses, hall sweeps, food and nutrition, grading systems and student socialization.

Also, during this year’s DC STEM Fair, more than 150 middle and high school students showcased their research project results, interviewed with STEM professionals and competed for awards.

The 73 projects submitted to the fair represented 14 schools, 54 projects in junior division involving 63 students and 19 projects in senior division with 22 students.

DCPS Goes to College

Kemuel Farmer graduated from Ballou Senior High School a year early and will attend the University of Delaware, where she plans to study secondary English education.

“I struggled with English when I was little, so I want to help older kids before they go off into the world,” she said.

Kemuel said the faculty at Ballou are the reason she feels prepared to go to college.

“They prepared [me] for the real world,” she said.

While at Ballou, Kemuel participated in the Book Club, Robotics Club, ROTC and Garden Club.

Despite her excitement for the next step, she has fond memories of her high school.

“Even with our differences, we’re still all one at Ballou,” she said.

Juan Lovos, who graduated from the Columbia Heights Education Campus, “cried a little bit” when he found out he was heading to Sewanee: The University of the South as a POSSE Scholar.

“Last year was rough. I didn’t really have aspirations for college,” Juan said. “But my sister helped me and encouraged me to apply. Now I know that I’m able to face adversity and beat it. I’m a stronger student.”

Charter School ‘Stars’

The “STARS Tribute 2017” recently celebrated the work of four most outstanding high school graduates and 11 exemplars of vision and mission of D.C. public charter schools.

This year’s event, sponsored by the D.C. Association of Chartered Schools, emphasized essential elements necessary for educational success.

Listed among the high school graduates are Artrice Carpenter of Friendship Public Charter School, whose 4.069 grade point average helped earn her admission to Carnegie Mellon University; Dominique Cravens of Washington Latin Public Charter School, who will attend Wellesley College with a 3.6 GPA; Thurgood Marshall Academy Public Charter School’s Lonnie Gordon, with a 3.75 GPA, who gained admission to Temple University; and Alonzo Martinez of Carlos who graduates from Carlos Rosario International Public Charter School.

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Dorothy Rowley – Washington Informer Staff Writer

I knew I had to become a writer when at age nine I scribbled a note to my younger brother’s teacher saying I thought she was being too hard on him in class. Well, the teacher immediately contacted my mother, and with tears in her eyes, profusely apologized. Of course, my embarrassed mother dealt with me – but that didn’t stop me from pursuing my passion for words and writing. Nowadays, as a “semi-retiree,” I continue to work for the Washington Informer as a staff writer. Aside from that, I keep busy creating quirky videos for YouTube, participating in an actor’s guild and being part of my church’s praise dance team and adult choir. I’m a regular fixture at the gym, and I like to take long road trips that have included fun-filled treks to Miami, Florida and Jackson, Mississippi. I’m poised to take to the road again in early 2017, headed for New Orleans, Louisiana. This proud grandmother of two – who absolutely adores interior decorating – did her undergraduate studies at Virginia Union University and graduate work at Virginia State University.

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