Principals' Message Jan 10 - Jan 14

What a Week!

Dear Peabody and Watkins,

We were able to reopen safely! That my take away from our one, O-N-E, day of in person instruction. Staff and families alike had no choice but to stay flexible and responsive to the changes that our city made from late December all the way until today. Thank you for your patience and commitment to safely returning our students to school. I want to acknowledge, especially, our staff who reached out to families to support their upload of the negative test and planned for a pivot to virtual instruction (thankfully largely not needed) and for an unknown number of students to return to school.

Looking ahead, we will continue to expect a negative test for anyone to return to school, including keeping our arrival procedures in place next week. We are aware that despite the preventative steps we're taking that it's only a matter of time before another positive case surfaces at our schools. If it does, all of our practices remain the same moving forward.

If you haven't yet, please see last week's notes on our arrival procedures and virtual learning opportunities.

Both Schools

Key Dates

  • Jan 11 MOY iReady testing begins, grades K-5.
  • Jan 14 - I HAVE A DREAM - postponed! Updates coming soon.
  • Jan 17 - Martin Luther King Holiday, no school.
  • Jan 25 - NAEP Assessment - 4th grade only. What is NAEP?
  • Jan 26 - End of Term 2. 1/2 Day Records Day, 1/2 Day PD.
  • Jan 27 - Watkins Talent Show, 6pm - postponed! Updates coming soon.
  • Feb 1st - LSAT
  • Feb 8 - Peabody Open House, 6pm (tentatively) in person
  • Feb 9 - Watkins Open House, 6pm 9(tentatively) in person

New Asymptomatic Student Testing Schedule!

Every Friday: Asymptomatic COVID testing for students.

9:15 for Watkins

9:15 for Peabody

Peabody and Watkins Students - We want you back!

We had 66% of Watkins students return on Thursday and 88% of Peabody students come back. Let's get to 100% on Monday! For families that haven't returned yet, we miss your child! Please complete the required steps to ensure a safe return. 2022 isn't the same without you!

The Safe Return Continues

At both schools, we will continue our new arrival procedures throughout the week. Any student that attended on Thursday will only need to complete the Ask, Ask, Look protocol.

Other families must show proof of a negative COVID test for students to enter the building. There are a number of ways to do this:

  1. Upload your test results. Upload proof of your COVID-19 negative test result to as soon as possible. We will run a final list early in the morning to check at the doors.

  2. Be prepared with a photo of a negative test on a phone.

  3. Bring a screenshot or printout of negative test result email.

Anyone who does not complete these steps ahead of time can take a rapid antigen test upon arrival.

Parents should continue to accompany their children through the arrival process!

Social-Emotional Supports for Dec 17 Incident

Our Mental Health team, and the DCPS central office team, is still available to support students who would like to talk. Homeroom teachers or parents can reach out to our social workers to arrange a time for their child to talk. is the point of contact on the team.

Virtual Learning Support Live This Week

In addition to the content that homeroom teachers posted on their Canvas pages, we have two staff working at home that can offer drop-in support for any student. Ms. Goedeke (math coach at Watkins) and Mr. Lopez (Spanish teacher at Watkins) will be available all next week for students and parents that have questions about their virtual assignments. It's an office hours, tutoring, tech support and more all in one! If your child is in quarantine, you can access Ms. Goedeke and Mr. Lopez according to this schedule:

Ms. Goedeke Virtual Support

Monday - Friday, 11:00 - 3:30

Click here to join the meeting

Mr. Lopez Virtual Support

10:15am – 12:15pm

1:15pm – 3:15pm

Click here to join the meeting

This offer is for next week only, Jan 10-14 and for Peabody students!

Virtual Spanish Class

Mr. Lopez is working from home and happy to teach Spanish to students who are also at home. Please join him online!

Spanish class - all grades

9:30am – 10:15am

Click here to join the meeting

Students that are in Spanish class at Watkins will have classes coverage by a substitute or another staff member.

This offer is for next week only, Jan 10-14.

Volunteers and Subs Wanted!

We’d love to have parents volunteer or substitute in our schools! Please consider giving a day or even a half-day here or there. Or even a more consistent commitment! Any day an extra adult will be a help to our students and staff.

Anyone will have to complete the clearance processes that are involved. Please see the links below for more information.


After consultation with DC Health, DCPS is working with DGS to turn water fountains back on in all schools. Watkins is scheduled for December 20-26 and Peabody for January 10-16.

Please note:

  • Although fountains were turned off at the beginning of the pandemic, the filter changing process continued on-schedule over the past 18 months. Per guidelines, filters were changed, fountains turned on, and water was tested.
  • Custodial teams will be expected to include water fountains in their enhanced cleaning routines in alignment with DC Health recommendations. We will ensure that this expectation is communicated directly.
  • Once water fountains have been turned on, custodial teams will run the fountains for one minute to flush the system.

We have been told that touchless water coolers will remain in schools to support the transition back to fountain use. However, eventually, they will be removed.


Registration for Peabody & Watkins FLEX Enrichment Winter Classes opens on Monday, December 20th at 5:00pm! Registration will close on January 9th and classes will start the week of January 17th. We have some great winter classes lined up and FLEX has switched registration platforms to help us monitor data/enrollment more closely.

Keep your eye out for the class options posted on the cluster list serves by the PTA.

QR Code - Mental Health Resources

Our amazing Mental Health Team has compiled a vast set of resources for use by caregivers and staff alike. Please use the QR code to browse the files and reach out to our social workers or psychologist with any questions!
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Year 2 With Kindred - Advancing Equity at our Schools - Partners Wanted!

Are you interested in advancing equity at Peabody and Watkins? New Kindred dialogue groups launching soon!

The Cluster’s Partnership With Kindred: Kindred supports communities in collaborating toward the creation of an anti-racist and liberated society. The Cluster began partnering with Kindred last year to bring caregivers, staff, and leaders together to advance educational equity and racial justice in our community. This work took the form of two diverse dialogue groups and the ongoing development of an equity team. This year, our partnership will include three new dialogue groups to grow the community of caregivers and staff working together to cultivate a Cluster culture in which everyone experiences a sense of belonging and can thrive.

More About This Year’s Dialogue Groups: Recruitment has begun for two new caregiver dialogue groups and one new staff dialogue group. Over the course of ten sessions, participants will come together to build trusting relationships, examine their own and learn about each other's multifaceted identities and histories, and explore how racial inequity shows up in our society and our school community. After the dialogue experience, group members will join the Kindred Equity Team. This team was formed by members of last year’s dialogue group and represents a space for equity-driven collective action, as well as for continued community building and identity processing.

How To Get Involved: If you are interested in joining one of the dialogue groups, please reach out to Ryan Jones ( or Meredith Morelle ( from the Kindred team to schedule a one-on-one conversation and learn more about the dialogue process.



The Fall Basketball season is now slated to begin in January, not December as previously communicated. See updated schedule below.

Recent update: sports this season will NOT allow spectators to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Home Basketball Games:

Wednesday January 12, 2022

Thursday January 13, 2022

Thursday January 20, 2022

Friday January 21, 2022

Friday January 28, 2022

Friday February 4, 2022

Monday February 7, 2022

Tuesday February 8, 2022

Away Basketball Games

Monday January 24, 2022

Thursday January 27, 2022

Monday January 31, 2022


Aftercare Fully Open for PK3, PK4, and K

Flex has fully staffed each grade level's aftercare. PK3 will start Dec 14. There are a few spots left. Sign up here. (click the orange "enroll now.")


Due to supply chain issues, we have not received some of the materials we ordered as a replacement for our dramatic play centers. If you have gently used or new extra play items, we are asking our school community to consider donating these items to classrooms for use in our dramatic play centers in December/January. These items may include but are not limited to:

Doll beds, child-sized wooden stove, sink, ironing board, iron, carriage, stroller, high chair, dress-up clothes, hats, shoes, boas, jewelry, pots, pans, dishes, other kitchen equipment relevant to different cultures, dolls representing different ethnic groups, child-sized broom and mop, toy telephones, pocketbooks, briefcases, plastic food, empty food boxes relevant to different cultures, doctors kit.

If you have any questions, please contact AP James at Peabody.