Hearst Weekly Update

February 23, 2020

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Principal's Message

Hello, Owls!

Thank you to everyone who came out to the PTA meeting on the 12th to hear and ask questions about next year's proposed budget. I appreciate your vote to fund non-personnel spending on supplies and am grateful for your support and generosity. As we discussed at the meeting, the next several years are going to be interesting ones for our community as we grow to serve even more kids and families than we currently do. I will use this space here to provide updates on staffing, hiring, and the shifts we'll make as we welcome a third K and 3rd grade homeroom next year, and how all of these things will impact our school. I also look forward to productive conversations with our LSAT and with you at PTA meetings about how to support our growing and changing school in future years. Change can be challenging but I'm confident that together we'll be able to work through any challenges, expected and unexpected, that come our way in the coming days, weeks, months, and years.

Additionally, a thank you also to all those who were able to come to school for conferences in the week before break, as well as those who responded to the Panorama survey. I appreciate your engagement and look forward to reviewing your survey responses.

We're looking forward to a positive and powerful week of learning this week and I hope that everyone had a wonderful February Break.

In partnership,


What I'm reading this week: Leading Change Together by Eleanor Drago-Severson and Jessica Blum-DeStefano

PS - The background photo is one that was taken by one of our 5th grade students. Thanks to Ms. Dittamo for sharing and for pushing our students to explore their artistic talents in new ways!

News and Announcements from Hearst

Upcoming Key Dates

  • 2/24 - Girls Basketball vs. Murch, 4:00PM
  • 2/24-25 - Musical auditions; 3:30 -6:00 PM

  • 2/26 – Musical call backs; 3:30-5:30 PM

  • 2/28 – Black History Month Celebration, 9:00-9:30, Gym; Musical cast list posted

Please check the Bloomz calendar for other important dates.

Student Safety

There have been several organizations in recent months that have come out with reports and research about the negative impacts on active shooter drills in schools. Despite this, we are still required by DCPS to conduct these drills and one is scheduled for this coming week. Please know that we do our best to ensure that these drills are not traumatic for students and use age-appropriate language to talk with kids about the drills and why we must have them. If you have any questions about these drills or how we talk to students about them, please reach out to your child's teacher and/or me.

On a related student safety note, a friendly reminder that when you enter the building, you must sign in at the security desk. When we have emergency drills or if we were to have an actual emergency, the sign in book ensures that we are accounting for all visitors in the building. Additionally, if you have a scheduled meeting with a staff member, after signing in, you must go to the office. Office staff will then call the staff member to confirm the meeting and let them know you are in the office. Finally, if you are picking up a child early, please remember that after you sign in, you must come to the office and wait there for your child. For the safety of all students, we cannot have parents waiting in hallways or the atrium for kids. I appreciate your cooperation with these procedures.

News and Announcements from DCPS

News and Announcements from Other Organizations

Invitation to Nominate Outstanding Teachers for DC Teacher of the Year

Every day, you work alongside great teachers in your building—teachers who inspire and accelerate growth for ALL students, teachers who build strong partnerships with families and communities, and teachers who go the extra mile or two each day. OSSE invites you to nominate these outstanding teachers for one (or more) of these state-level teacher recognition and award opportunities:

2021 DC Teacher of the Year

  • Who is eligible? Any teacher (pre-K to grade 12) serving in a public or public charter school in DC, with five years or more teaching experience.
  • Prize: $7,500 award and the opportunity to represent DC in the 2021 National Teacher of the Year competition.
  • Nomination Form: bit.ly/2021DCTOY
  • Nomination Deadline: Friday, March 6, 2020

2020 DC History Teacher of the Year

  • Who is eligible? Any full-time educator of grades K–12 who teaches American history (including state and local history, or as part of social studies or ELA), with three years or more teaching experience.
  • Prize: $3,500 award and the opportunity to represent DC in the National History Teacher of the Year competition.
  • Nomination Form: bit.ly/DCHistoryTOY
  • Nomination Deadline: Tuesday, March 31, 2020

2020 Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST)

  • Who is eligible? Teachers of science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and/or computer science at the K-6 grade level* in public, charter, or private school, with five years or more teaching experience. (*Grade 7-12 teachers will be eligible during the 2021 cycle.)
  • Prize: $10,000 award presented at the White House.
  • Nomination Form: www.PAEMST.org
  • Nomination Deadline: Sunday, March 1, 2020

Each nomination form is very brief, and only takes a few minutes to complete. Once nominated, teachers will receive information about how to formally submit a full application for the award.

Colleagues and other school staff, parents, students, and community members are also able to submit nominations. Attached you will find a flyer with additional information.

Thank you for your partnership in elevating the voices of our outstanding DC teachers.

Reminder: Summer Youth Employment Program Applications Close Feb. 29

Over four decades, the Mayor Marion S. Barry Summer Youth Employment Program (MBSYEP) has empowered nearly half a million young Washingtonians with valuable work experience. In 2015, Mayor Bowser expanded the program to include District residents ages 22-24. Last year, nearly 10,000 young Washingtonians participated in MBSYEP, working more than 1.3 million total hours.

Applications to participate this summer are open until February 29, 2020. Learn more and apply HERE.

DCTAG Application Now Open

The DCTAG application is now open! Did you know that the DC Tuition Assistance Grant provides up to $10,000 in tuition assistance to eligible DC residents attending out-of-state public institutions of higher education? Additionally, eligible students attending private Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and select private local institutions are eligible for up to $2,500.

Apply today at dconeapp.dc.gov. Don’t miss this funding opportunity that is available only to residents of the District of Columbia! For more information, visit osse.dc.gov/dctag.

New Opportunities to Responsibly Recycle Old Electronics

Have old electronics sitting at home that you're not sure what to do with? Recycle them!

The District's electronics recycling program, eCycle DC, is doubling in size. In addition to libraries, locations have been expanded to include recreation centers and the Mayor’s Office of the Clean City Roll-off Days. All collection dates and more information on eCycle DC can be found at doee.dc.gov/ecycle.