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January  8 -
January 12, 2018
Columbia Heights Educational Campus
3101 16th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20010

CHEC MISSION 2017-2018
(Updated August 14, 2017)

All students who graduate from our Dual Language Immersion Early College Campus will be prepared to succeed in college and civic life as leaders in the quest for social justice. We develop intellectually curious scholars who are articulate communicators in two languages, critical thinkers and consumers, cultural ambassadors, and contributing community members. We focus on socio-emotional learning as a key part of the instructional program, and our students demonstrate perseverance, ethics and character in the pursuit of excellence. Restorative practices are the foundation of our school climate, as we enhance relationships and build community. As lifelong learners in the pursuit of excellence and innovation, we foster a growth mindset through which teachers, administrators, students, parents, and community members all collaborate to achieve goals. We trust one another to continually improve our practice.

Dear CHEC community,

We are proud to announce that CHEC’s very own Gloria Hernandez, Coordinator of Strategy and Logistics, has been honored by the DC Public Education Fund with a 2018 Standing Ovation Award – the Rubenstein Award for Excellence Among School Staff.  
This is such a well-deserved recognition for the relentless professionalism, dedication and integrity that Ms. Hernandez has always given to the CHEC community.  She is the heartbeat of this campus and a stalwart who works tirelessly to ensure that all students and families have an advocate. She also helps faculty, staff and administrators remain on mission by arming us with the supplies and logistical supports needed to succeed professionally. Through the years she has given CHEC the highest standards of empathy and compassion in every single interaction with all members of the CHEC family – there are hundreds, perhaps thousands of parents who trace their positive affinity with this school to Ms. Hernandez’ acts of kindness and impeccable counsel. Professionally, Ms. Hernandez has devoted 37 years to our community. Please join with me in congratulating her when you next see her – the smile she reflects back will definitely lift your spirits!  

Ms. Hernandez will receive her award at the annual Standing Ovation for DC Public Schools, on Thursday, February 8th, at The Anthem.


Dear CHEC Students:

Last night, a news report concerning the attendance rates at Columbia Heights Education Campus aired on a local news station.  As you know, we have been communicating with you and your parents throughout the year about the importance of regular attendance at school.

Last month, DC Public Schools, alongside the Office of the State Superintendent for Education, announced a district-wide examination of adherence to attendance and grading policies across all high schools. Next week, a full report on the status of attendance and grades in all high schools will be published.

In the news story last night , the reporter showed a case of a CHEC student with excessive absences passing a  course in the first advisory.  He implied that this was something that was happening with the majority of students and grades, however we have reviewed our grades and attendance for the first advisory, and this has happened in a only a small percentage of cases.  

The problem with reports like this is that they do not tell the full story, and they do not have full information on how our school addresses issues of attendance or grading.   The reporter did not even try to get information from the school in order to support his allegations.  In addition, somehow the reporter gained access to confidential student records that he should not have.  The story does not reflect the great work and accomplishments of you as students.  We are looking through all of the report cards from last year and this year to date, to gather definitive data on how many students with excessive unexcused absences passed their courses.  We will make any improvements that need to be made.

So far this year, our daily attendance rate is 87%, up from 84% last year.  And as you know we have supports, interventions, counseling, and after school programs to assist all of our students in getting to school on time every day.
I  believe in the CHEC community—our students, our staff, and our families. I know that, together, we will move forward with a positive school year as we continue to address the issues of  attendance and grading.  It is important now that we focus on our learning and progress, and that we stay united as a school community to demonstrate our pride, poise and perseverance as scholars.  It is important that we share the positive stories of what all of us are doing, and how you as students are overcoming many obstacles every day, in order to come to school on time, and complete your education.  Let’s take this as an opportunity to rededicate ourselves to coming to school every day and achieving at our highest level.

We will be following up on all aspects of this situation, to include preparing a response to the news story.  There will be opportunities for you as students to get involved in this response.

We  will be holding an open parent and student meeting on Tuesday, January 16 at 6:00 pm, to answer any concerns or questions the school community may  have.  We will also be scheduling grade level meetings and discussions about this issue.  You can contact any of your teachers, counselors, administrators or Ms. Tukeva with your questions or concerns.

It it is to be – it is up to us!!


  • Shout out to the Saturday Academy Team – Ms. Ermis, Ms. Emilius, Mr. Galvan, Mr. Jones, Mr. Salas, Mr. Talarico, and Ms. Whitaker for the strong showing for the Saturday Academy for ELL’s – 29 students braved the cold weather!  We are aiming for even more next weekend!

  • Shout out to Jessica Alvarado and Wendy Pugh for all their hard work in launching a Rotary Interact Club at CHEC. Because of their efforts, our students performed a variety of impactful community service projects such as laying wreaths at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington Cemetry over the holidays.  Our students were honored with an induction and pinning ceremony by the President of the DC Rotary Club earlier in the week.

  • Kudos to all Facilitators at Early Release Day – Dr. Barnett, Mr. Jones, Mr. Caceres, Mr. Broad, Mr. Cabone, Ms. Emami, Ms. Baker Hoffman, Ms. Chiu, Ms. Hinkson, Ms. Strickland, Mr. Talarico, Mr. Connor, Mr. Hernandez, Ms. Weiss, Mr. Duvall, Mr. Magee, Ms. McCulloch!  A great Choice PD Day!

  • Shout Out to the Ops Department and the LEAP Leaders for a great LEAP Session at CHEC!

  • Kudos to the Social Studies Team for their presentation of student work at the ALT Team Meeting last week!

  • Shout out to Captain Gantt,  Master Sergeant DesChamps  and the Cadets for successfully passing the NJROTC inspection last week!
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