Department of Energy and Environment Plans to Test Ward 6 Students for Lead Exposure — The D.C. Department of Energy and Environment is planning to send mobile units to test Ward 6 elementary students for lead exposure today and May 4 in response to reports last week of elevated lead levels in the water at several schools. [Hill Rag]
NoMa Bank Robbery Suspect Allegedly Hit Same Bank Twice on Consecutive Days — The FBI said that Tyrone Edward Wright, who allegedly robbed three banks in two days in NoMa last week, got the same teller during two hold-ups of the Premier Bank on the 1100 block of 1st Street NE. [Washington Post]
Tunnel Connecting Eastern NoMa to Metro Could Cost up to $23 Million — The proposed pedestrian tunnel beneath the railroad tracks that sit between the east side of NoMa and the NoMa-Gallaudet University Metro station could cost between $16 million and $23 million. The project will likely be funded by a partnership between NoMa businesses and the D.C. government, not WMATA. [Washington Business Journal]
Developer Files Application to Demolish Navy Yard McDonald’s — RCP Development, the complany planning a 380-unit apartment building at South Capitol and I streets SE has filed an application to raze the McDonald’s currently on the corner. [JDLand]
The snow emergency that was initiated on Friday morning is set to end at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Bowser said.
Those who parked along snow emergency routes during the snow emergency and were towed can pick up their cars, but the Department of Public Works warns that they might have to dig them out of the impound lot.
If you're going to DC impound lot to recover your car that was towed, bring a shovel. @DCDPW advises you'll have to dig your car out.
— Mark Segraves (@SegravesNBC4) January 26, 2016
Bowser also announced that DC Public Schools have been cleared and will be ready for classes to start tomorrow.
The District government will also begin issuing fines to businesses that have not cleared sidewalks in front of their properties. A new law this year allows the Department of Public Works to fine homeowners and business owners who do not remove snow and ice from sidewalks adjacent to their property.
However, Bowser said that given the severity of the recent storm, fines will not be issued to homeowners or residential properties.
D.C. Public Schools and government offices will all be open tomorrow. The D.C. Public Charter School Board is updating the status of charter schools throughout the District online.
Though the District government will be open, trash collection will still be on hold until Thursday at the earliest. DPW announced that it will attempt to reach every regular route with pickup scheduled for Thursday or Friday. Regular trash collection service will resume on Monday.
Photo via Twitter/ Mayor Muriel Bowser
(Updated at 10:35 a.m.) Metro to Offer Limited, Free Service Today — Metrorail opened this morning at 7 a.m. with limited service. Trains on the Red, Orange and Green lines are running every 20-25 minutes. At 11 a.m., Metro will extend service on all three lines to include some above-ground service:
- Orange Line is running between Ballston and New Carrollton
- Red Line will run between Medical Center and Glenmont
- Green Line will run between Fort Totten and Branch Avenue
Some Metro bus lines will also operate between noon and 5 p.m. today. Buses on the following routed will operate in D.C.: 32, 33, 36, 53, 70, 90, A6, A8, S4, U8, V4, X2. [WMATA]
Despite School Closures, Eastern High School and Jefferson Middle School Will Serve Breakfast, Lunch Today — D.C. Public Schools and charter schools are closed today as the District works to clear snow-covered roads, but schools throughout the District, including Eastern High School at 1700 East Capitol St. NE and Jefferson Middle School Academy at 801 7th St. SW, will still serve breakfast and lunch for students and their families today. D.C. Public Schools is asking for volunteers to help put together meals between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. [WTOP]
Water Main Break Causes Overnight Water Outages on Capitol Hill — Houses near the intersection of A and 6th streets SE lost water for most of last night as DC Water repaired a broken water main near the intersection. [DC Water]
Trash Collection Cancelled for Monday, Tuesday — The District Department of Public Works announced that it will not be able to complete trash pickup today or tomorrow and is currently assessing its ability to collect trash for the rest of the week.
EdFEST 2015 is hosted by My School D.C., an organization that partners with D.C. Public Schools and most District charter schools that operates the District’s school lottery system. The free fair will run from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will feature public and public charter schools from Pre-K through high school. It is the only citywide public school fair in the District.
Representatives from each school will be on hand to talk with parents. Meanwhile, the Department of Parks and Recreation and the D.C. Library will have activities for kids of all ages.
The Department of Health will also be administering immunizations and flu shots at the fair.
Catherine Peretti, executive director of My School D.C., also added that My School D.C. employees will be on hand to answer parent questions about the school lottery application for placement in preferred schools.
My School D.C. applications for the 2016-17 school year will begin on Monday and end on Feb. 1 for High schools and March 1 for elementary and middle schools.
About 4,500 families attended last year’s fair, Peretti said.
“We have some really wonderful school options in the District, so our families are lucky in that way and we are glad to give our schools the opportunity to tell their story,” she said.
The D.C. Armory is located at 2001 East Capitol St. SE and parking will be free throughout the event.
We’ve made it through Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday, but the post-Thanksgiving holidays aren’t over yet. Today is Giving Tuesday, a day started in 2012 to give those who spent the past four days shopping a chance to give some of the money they saved to causes and charities they care about. And this year is shaping up to be the biggest Giving Tuesday ever, with NPR declaring this year that the quasi-holiday has officially become ‘a thing.’
For those looking to support causes in their own neighborhoods, there are plenty of options in the Capitol Hill area. The Greater Washington Catalogue for Philanthropy has a full, vetted list of area charities raising money this month on their website. Here are some local charities and organizations raising money today:
The Anacostia Watershed Society organizes cleanup and conservation efforts with the goal of making the Anacostia River swimmable and fishable. Funds raised go toward supplies to remove trash and tours of the river given to local students.
Reach for College! helps disadvantaged high school students across the district apply and prepare for higher education. In the Capitol Hill area, Reach for College! works with students at Eastern High School and Cesar Chavez PCS.
The Shaw-based STRIVE DC works with hard-to-employ adults in Wards 5, 6, 7 and 8 to give them the education, skills and confidence they need to find a job. Funds raised will go toward three-week job-training programs for adults and two-year follow-up services for those who have secured a job.
Open Arms Housing operates a home in NoMa where formerly homeless women live together in apartments where they can feel a sense of security and community. The organization also offers voluntary mental health and substance abuse services to its residents.
The Homeless Children’s Playtime Project makes sure that homeless children still have a chance to be kids by offering safe places where they can play, interact and work on homework. The project works within D.C. General Homeless shelter and other shelters across the city.
Based in Navy Yard, the Family and Youth Initiative pairs teens in foster care with caring adult role models and mentors. Donations provide anything from birthday cards for teens in foster care who otherwise would not receive anything to events where teens can meet families considering adoption.
Free Minds runs the literary journal The Untold Story of the Real Me: Young Voices from Prison. The group works with incarcerated youth, including those at the DC Jail in Hill East, to help them express themselves and connect with others through writing. The group also provides copies of inmates’ writing to local schools.
Everybody Wins! operates literacy and mentoring programs in low-income public elementary schools throughout the District including Amidon-Bowen, Ludlow-Taylor, Tyler, J.O. Wilson, Maury and Miner elementary schools in the Capitol Hill area.
CHAW offers arts education and opportunities for children and adults around the Capitol Hill area. Donations will be used to cover art class tuition for those who otherwise would not be able to afford it and supplies for arts classes.
BEST Kids offers mentorship and peer bonding events for foster children in the District. Mentors are helped by experts in psychiatry, education, legal advocacy and behavior management and help children set and reach goals for themselves.
Barracks Row Main Street is a nonprofit organization that supports businesses along 8th Street SE and hosts events in the area. The money raised during Giving Tuesday will go toward planting spring flowers, other seasonal decorations and other public space improvements along the street.
Photo via givingtuesday.org
Students at 10 Capitol Hill-area Elementary and Middle schools scored above the District average in math and English according to test results from the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers released today.
Students across the District took the PARCC tests to determine how well schools are preparing students for college and careers. Earlier today, Mayor Muriel Bowser released the results of test scores for grades 3-8. On average, 25 percent of students between grades 3 and 8 scored at “On track for college and career readiness” in math and 24 percent were on track in English.
However, multiple elementary and middle schools in the Capitol Hill area scored above the District average. Brent Elementary led area schools in both math and English, with 57 percent of students considered on track in math and 68 percent in English.
The other local schools that exceeded the District average in both math and English are:
- School Within School
- Ludlow-Taylor Elementary School
- Maury Elementary School
- Watkins Elementary School
- Two Rivers Public Charter School
The following schools scored above average in math only:
- Tyler Elementary School
- J.O. Wilson Elementary School
- Chamberlain Middle School (Friendship PCS)
Capitol Hill Montessori School at Logan scored above average in English but not math.
Catharine Bellinger, the Director of the D.C. chapter of Democrats for Education Reform touted Ludlow-Taylor and Tyler elementary schools as schools that performed well despite having a high number of economically disadvantaged students in a statement about the scores.
Bellinger said that students at these schools are “beating the odds” and said DFER “commend the teachers and leaders working every day in these schools to prepare their students to succeed, not just on tests, but as life-long learners and critical thinkers.”
Starting at a new school can be hard for kids and parents. As parents start gearing up for school enrollment season in the Spring, several Capitol Hill area schools are holding open houses. These open houses will give parents a chance to check out their kids’ prospective new schools and meet some of the teachers and other parents.
Here is a rundown of all the school open houses happening later this week and in the next couple months:
Watkins Elementary School
420 12th St. SE
Open: Nov. 18, 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.
Stuart-Hobson Middle School
410 E St. NE
Open: Nov. 19, 9:30 a.m. and 6 p.m.
Van Ness Elementary School
1150 5th St. SE
Open: Nov. 19, 9-10 a.m.
Miner Elementary School
601 15th St. NE
Open: Nov. 19, 9:30-10:30 a.m.
Dec. 8, 9:30-10:30 a.m.
Jan. 14, 9:30-10:30 a.m.
Feb. 18, 9:30-10:30 a.m.
Jefferson Academy Middle School
801 7th St. SW
Open: Nov. 20, 9:30-11 a.m.
Brent Elementary School
301 North Carolina Ave. SE
Open: Nov. 23, 9-10:30 a.m.
Maury Elementary School
1250 Constitution Ave. NE
Open: Nov. 30, 9-10:30 a.m.
Capitol Hill Day School (PreK-8th grade)
210 South Carolina Ave. SE
Open: Dec. 8, 9-11 a.m.
Tours also available on Tuesday and Thursday mornings. Schedule a morning tour by emailing [email protected]
Ludlow Taylor Elementary School
659 G St. NE
Open: Dec. 10, 9:30 a.m.
Jan. 14, 9:30 a.m.
Feb 11, 9:30 a.m.
School Within School
920 F St. NE
Open: Jan. 14, 6-7:30 p.m.
Feb. 20, 9-10:30 a.m.
Reach Incorporated, a program that hires teenagers to be elementary school reading tutors, will release four children’s books written by local high school students on Thursday.
The books were written by teams of three teenagers, all of which included students from Eastern High School. They will be officially released at a book launch party from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Thursday at the Pepco Edison Place Gallery at 702 8th St. NW. The four new titles will bring the total number of books created through the program to 13.
Reach Incorporated Executive Director Mark Hecker said that the books have all been popular among the elementary students in the tutoring program.
Hecker attributes some of that success to the fact that the teenagers can tell stories that local elementary school students can relate to, but which are not often the subjects of children’s books. Past topics have been growing up in a shelter and dealing with the death of parents.
“Our teenagers are willing to dig into issues that generally don’t get broached in children’s literature,” Hecker said. “But they are issues that the kids we work with deal with all the time.”
Hecker said the tutoring program currently reaches about 125 elementary school students throughout the District, including several students at Payne Elementary School in Hill East. This year, Reach Incorporated won the National Book Foundation’s Innovations in Reading Prize for its tutoring program.
The groups of teens spent about six weeks writing the books over the summer. Hecker said that although Reach Incorporated emphasizes the need for more diverse characters in children’s literature, the stories are entirely created by the high school students.
“The teenagers become very thoughtful about not only what story they want to tell, but how they want people to connect to the book,” he said.
Reach Incorporated also holds book readings at elementary schools, where students get a chance to meet the authors.
“In many cases, we set up the readings at the authors’ former elementary schools and kids ask questions about writing books too,” Hecker said. “It gives them something to aspire to in a really cool way.”
Hecker said he also hopes the readings and books help change perceptions of teenagers in the area.
“There’s a lot of media attention given to teenagers in this town but it’s mostly negative,” he said. “A lot of people really appreciate that our teens are out there giving back to their community.”
Tickets for the book launch party are available online in addition to opportunities to donate copies of the books to local elementary schools.
Photo via Facebook/ Reach, Inc.
J.O. Wilson Elementary Receives $175,000 Grant for Extra Services — Mayor Muriel Bowser announced at a press conference at J.O. Wilson Elementary School on Capitol Hill that the school will receive a $175,000 community schools grant to provide health care, extra learning, mental-health services and counseling for families of students. [Washington Post]
Center for Teens, Preteens Opens at D.C. General — A youth center inside D.C. General homeless shelter designed by the Homeless Children’s Playtime Project for teens and preteens opened yesterday. [NBC Washington]
Ten 01 Restaurant and Bar Opens Above Ben’s Chili Bowl on H Street NE — Ten 01, the bar and restaurant on the second floor of Ben’s Chili Bowl at 1001 H St. NE opened yesterday with a refined menu that includes a half-smoke-infused Manhattan and a prickly pear margarita. [Washington City Paper]
NoMa Parks Foundation Buys Its First Property — The NoMa Parks Foundation, a group responsible for bringing more parks to NoMa purchased their first property last week. The lot at 3rd and L streets NE is just over 5,000 square feet and cost the foundation $3.2 million. [Washington Business Journal]
Stadium-Armory Delays May End This Year, Metro Says — Metro’s assistant manager for infrastructure said repairs to the power substation that caught fire in September could finish by the end of the year, returning normal service to the station earlier than initially thought. [WTOP]
Assistant Police Chief Tries to Assure H Street NE Residents That Police are Addressing Crime — Assistant police Chief Diane Grooms told an ANC 6A meeting last night that police are working to address recent crime on the H Street corridor. [Capitol Hill Corner]
Events D.C. Hires 11th Street Bridge Park Architects to Design RFK Campus — Events DC, the organization that manages the RFK Stadium campus, hired the company that designed the future 11th Street Bridge park to draft design concepts for RFK’s grounds. [Washington Business Journal]
Councilman Allen Joins Eight Other Councilmembers in Opposing Private School Voucher Program Extension — Eight members of the D.C. Council, including Councilman Charles Allen of Ward 6, sent a letter to Republican leaders in Congress opposing their plan to extend the District’s private school voucher program. [Roll Call]
Homebody Reopens at New Location Below Forecast — Former Barracks Row home goods store Homebody reopens today at its new location in the basement of Forecast at 218 7th St. SE with an opening party at 6 p.m. [The Hill is Home]
Parents, Students Complain of Harsh Discipline at Capitol Hill School — Parents of students at John Tyler Elementary School on Capitol Hill have claimed that a third grade teacher at the school has a history of excessive punishment. [Fox 5]
Development in Southwest Disturbs the Peace at District’s Only Houseboat Community — Residents of the Gangplank Marina in Southwest, the only houseboat community in D.C., said that development at The Wharf has made their quiet corner of the city louder and made their future at the site uncertain. [Washington Post]
Man Arrested for Bathing in Fountain at Library of Congress — A man was arrested for indecent exposure after he was caught bathing in the fountain outside of the Library of Congress last week. [NBC Washington]
D.C. Fountains Ranked by Potability of Water — Several fountains near the U.S. Capitol got high marks when Stuck in DC taste-tested public fountains and reflecting pools around the District. The Southwest Duck Pond did not fare so well. [Stuck in DC]
Councilman Allen Asks Metro to Reconsider Skipping Stadium-Armory Station — Councilman Charles Allen of Ward 6 joined Councilwoman Yvette Alexander of Ward 7 in asking Metro interim General Manager Jack Requa to reverse his decision to suspend Orange and Silver line service to the Stadium-Armory station during rush hour. [Washington Post]
H Street Corridor Residential Project Gets Redesign Ahead of Zoning Commission Hearing — Developers have revised their designs for a planned apartment building at 315 H St. NE across from the Giant on the H Street corridor. [Urban Turf]
Where to Get Free Ice Cream Today With a Side of Children’s Art — Stanton-EastBanc and Clark Construction are scheduled to dish out complimentary scoops of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream today from 5 to 6:30 p.m. near the Hine redevelopment project at 7th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue SE. [Hill Now]
Bluejacket in Navy Yard Prepares for Fall, Winter Beers — Navy Yard brewery Bluejacket is working with local farmers to get apples, pears, cranberries and brown cherries for cold-weather beers. [Roll Call]
Fire Shut Down Stadium-Armory Station for Nearly 10 Hours — Fire officials still are investigating the cause of a fire at a Metro power facility that burned throughout the day yesterday, closing the nearby Stadium-Armory Metro station for most of the day. [NBC Washington]
New Restaurant and Wine Bar to Open Near Lincoln Park — Lincoln Park Kitchen and Wine Bar, which will replace Ninnella Italian restaurant at the corner of 13th and East Capitol streets SE, is slated to open in early October. [Barred in DC]
Capitol Hill School Accused of Violating Rules on Standardized Tests — The Capitol Hill campus of Center City Public Charter Schools is one of six D.C. schools accused of violating standardized testing rules. Students at Center City said a test administrator encouraged them to change their answers to some questions. [Washington Post]
Restaurant Near U.S. Capitol Will Close if Forced to Remove Patio Seating, Eatery’s Owners Say — Owners of The Alibi restaurant at 237 2nd St. NW said a District Department of Transportation order to remove their sidewalk patio enclosure will eliminate two-thirds of the eatery’s seating and force it to shut down. [PoPville]
Road closures, transit changes and extra security are set to arrive in the Capitol Hill area this week when Pope Francis is scheduled to visit the District.
Locals near Capitol Hill are expected to feel the effects of the pope’s visit most strongly on Thursday, when he is slated to speak to a joint session of Congress at the U.S. Capitol.
Here’s how his trip will affect the Capitol Hill area:
- A ticketed event is scheduled to view a live video feed of the pope’s 10 a.m. address to Congress from the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol. Attendees also might catch a glimpse of Francis outside, but should check the list of prohibited items.
- No public, non-ticketed viewing areas are available on the U.S. Capitol grounds or the National Mall.
- The U.S. Capitol will close to the public at 5 p.m. Tuesday and remain closed for the duration of the pope’s visit.
- All streets within a three-block radius of the U.S. Capitol will be closed from midnight to noon on Thursday.
- Pennsylvania Avenue NW between 3rd and 1st streets NW and Maryland Avenue SW between 1st and 3rd streets SW will both be closed from 5 p.m. Wednesday to 4 p.m. Thursday.
- Louisiana Avenue NW between Columbus Circle and Constitution Avenue NW, Washington Avenue SW between South Capitol Street and Independence Avenue SW, and East Capitol Street between 2nd and 1st streets SE and NE will be closed between midnight and 4 p.m. Thursday.
- Metro will increase service during afternoons and evenings. Metro does not have the capacity to increase service during rush hours and expects trains to be very crowded at those times.
- Bicycles and large coolers won’t be allowed on Metro trains Wednesday or Thursday.
- Bags, packages and containers may be searched at Metro stations.
- There is no scheduled track work on any lines during the pope’s visit.
- Updated information will be made available online.
- D3 bus will not operate on Wednesday or Thursday.
- X2 will not go further downtown than Gallery Place from 10:30 p.m. Tuesday to 2 p.m. Thursday.
- 30N and 30S will not run between Foggy Bottom and Federal Triangle from 10:30 p.m. Tuesday to 2 p.m. Wednesday.
- 32 and 36 only will operate from Southeast to 12th Street NW and Constitution Avenue NW from 10:30 p.m. Tuesday to 2 p.m. Wednesday.
- 39 only will operate between Naylor Road and 6th Street NW and Constitution Avenue NW.
- A9, P17, P19 and W13 only will run between Southeast D.C. and L’Enfant Plaza.
- X1 only will operate between Benning Road NE and 6th Street NW and Constitution Avenue NW.
- The National Mall route will not operate at all on Wednesday or Thursday.
- Buses on the Union Station-Navy Yard route will detour to avoid road closures near the Capitol. Buses going to Navy Yard will take Massachusetts Avenue NW to 4th Street NW to Pennsylvania Avenue SW, where it will resume its normal route. Buses going to Union Station will take Pennsylvania Avenue SW to 6th Street SW to Massachusetts Avenue NW, where it will resume its normal route.
- Buses on the Georgetown-Union Station, Potomac Avenue-Skyland and Union Station-Navy Yard routes will all operate every 15 minutes from noon to the end of the day Wednesday.
- Street sweeping has been suspended on Wednesday and Thursday on the 200 block of East Capitol Street and the 200 to 300 blocks of Massachusetts Avenue NE.
- All other parking restrictions and street sweeping schedules will be enforced as usual.
- D.C. public schools all will be open for the entirety of the Pope’s visit. But school officials warn that road closures and crowds may affect transportation to and from school and said parents can contact the Parent Resource Center at 202-576-5000 for transportation-related questions during the pope’s visit.
- Cesar Chavez Public Charter Schools for Public Policy will close Wednesday.
- Center City Public Charter Schools won’t hold classes Wednesday.
The fair, which runs from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 1700 East Capitol St. NW, will be staffed by students in the academy, a special program for Eastern High students preparing for pre-med studies or careers in nursing. It will be the first time that students in the academy have hosted a public health fair.
Students in grades 9-12 will give blood pressure, body mass index and other health screenings and will also present projects that they’ve worked on this past school year.
“Students will be using some of the various medical techniques they’ve learned,” Saudia Staten, an administrator at Eastern, said. “It’s an opportunity to showcase what they’ve learned and to get younger students in the area interested in the Health and Medical Sciences Academy.”
The academy is a four-year program at Eastern with a curriculum focused on medicine and health. Staten says the school hopes that the fair will generate more interest in the academy among middle and elementary school students in the area.
“It’s going to be fun for everyone,” she said. “There’s lots of things that younger students and parents can learn not just about the academy but about Eastern as a whole.”
In addition to the student-led screenings and presentations, the fair will also include cooking, exercise and hip hop dance demonstrations.