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D.C. EDUCATION BRIEFS: Teacher of the Year Finalist

Alejandro Diasgranados, D.C.’s 2021 Teacher of the Year, has been named a finalist for the National Teacher of the Year award.

Diasgranados, who teaches at Aiton Elementary School, is one of four in the running for the nation’s top teaching honor.

The last time a D.C. teacher was being considered for the national honor was in 2019 when Amidon-Bowen Elementary School teacher Kelly Harper was a finalist. Prior to that in 2005, Richmond (Va.) Schools Chief Jason Kamras, who went on to serve in several DCPS leadership roles, was named National Teacher of the Year.

“The District of Columbia is fortunate to have outstanding teachers like Alejandro Diasgranados in classrooms throughout the city and advocating for our students,” Bowser said in a statement. “Mr. Diasgranados is an inspiration to his students and a role model for all teachers seeking to make a difference in the lives of D.C. children. We are proud to have him representing Washington, D.C. and teachers nationwide.”

Schools Closed

Monday, Feb.15

Presidents Day (No school for students, teachers or staff)

Bowser Expresses Gratitude

In her Feb. 5 weekly community letter, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser extends her gratitude to everyone who made it possible for students to return to in-person learning.

“Thank you for helping us welcome students back to every single DC Public School,” Bowser wrote. “Thank you to our labor partners: AFSCME, the American Federation of Government Employees, the Council of School Officers, the Service Employees International Union, Teamsters, and the Washington Teachers’ Union.”

Bowser added that, “after all the dark days we have experienced this past year, seeing our young people filled with joy to be back in the classroom was a true bright spot. And the masked smiles we saw at pick-ups and drop-offs across all eight wards were a reminder of how important this reopening was for our young people.”

School Lottery Deadline

The deadline to sign up for the 2021-22 lottery for PK3–8th grade applicants is March 1. Lottery results and waitlist positions will be available April 2. For instructions on accessing a short video about the lottery, email info.myschooldc@dc.go.

Dinner Meals at Select Schools

A dinner meal is now being served with meal kits at Excel Academy, Langdon Elementary School, McKinley High School and Bard High School Early College.

In addition to breakfast and lunch, youth will now receive a third daily meal as part of their grab-and-go meal kits. http://dcps.dc.gov/page/dcps-self-operated-menus.

Bunker Hill Elementary Recognized

DCPS is thrilled to learn that Special Olympics DC (@specialolyDC) has named Bunker Hill Elementary School (@dc_pto) as a National Banner award recipient for its efforts to provide inclusive sports and activities for students with and without disabilities.

Congratulations to Coach Walker

DCPS extends congratulations to Coach Reginald F. Walker Sr., National Federation of State High School Associations, District of Columbia Girls Basketball-Coach of the Year. Coach Walker has led Anacostia High School to more than six championships.

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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