08-26-2019 - CHEC BULLETIN

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CHEC bulletin for Week of August 26, 2019

    Dear CHEC Team:

    Welcome back to all, as we open our doors, hearts, and minds to our students and parents for a new  year of learning and growing at Columbia Heights Educational Campus.  Thank you to all staff and faculty for your thoughtful engagement in our Pre-Service preparation, and for creating curriculum and learning spaces that are warm, inviting and stimulating.  We have worked on developing trust and capacity as a whole school team, as well as intersecting specialized teams.  In order to set a strong foundation and direction for the year, we have begun the process of increasing Shared Leadership, Engaging Parents and Community Members, Creating a Culture of Achievement, and Focusing on Academics.   Most importantly, we are sharpening our equity lens through courageous conversations about race and the achievement gap.

    The focus for Day 1 and Week 1 is to begin the process of building relationships with and among students, so that each class becomes its own powerful learning community.  These are our look-fors for Week 1:

    • Highlight and discuss the Mission as a tool for building student engagement and investment in learning.
    • Engage students in developing the classroom norms so they internalize them and buy into them.
    • Build relationships through activities for students to get to know one another and to know you.
    • Model, teach and practice Routines and Rituals, including CHAMPS and tech use, so that time on task can be maximized in class.
    • Develop  Student Self-Efficacy and Time Management by modeling and building in time for the use of the Agenda Book (calendaring, posting assignments, utilizing the resources).
    • Begin the teaching of content on Day 1, through standards aligned objectives and introduction of the class syllabus.  The first GRASPS should be introduced in Week 1, with an opportunity for students to interact and dissect it.

    Best wishes to all for a rewarding and successful School Year 2019-2020.

    You  received an email on Saturday, with a detailed memo with all of the logistics for Day 1.  Please read it carefully.  Just in case, you can see it via this hyperlink.

    A smooth opening will depend on everyone’s teamwork, so please reach out to help – or request help if needed!

    As you know, our middle school enrollment has surged, so our middle school colleagues will need our support! If you can, reach out and support the middle school team! We also have a number of teachers new to CHEC, so please support them as well!


    • Shout Out to the Counselors for their relentless work on student schedules, and ensuring that every student has a high quality schedule on Day 1!!!
    • Kudos to our Maintenance Team, led by Mr. Best, for their outstanding work in preparing our building for opening!!!
    • Shout out to Pankaj Rayamajhi and the Ops Team for making sure that we have the supplies and materials we need to open school!
    • Kudos to Mr. Tobias and Ms. Brea, for making sure all of our tech will be ready for Week 1!!!
    • Shout out to the Admin Team members for working and planning all summer for school opening!
    • Kudos to our LEAP Leaders for attending the Summer Leadership Academy and beginning the planning process for the new school year!
    • Shout out to Ms. Hinkson for serving as Summer School Principal so that all of our students could gain the credits they need for promotion!
    • Shout out to Ms. Vialpando-Strickland for coordinating New Teachers Orientation this summer, and thank you to all presenters!!
    • Kudos to our PGT Team for our great SEL Professional Development during Pre-Service Week!!
    • Shout out to Ms. Warren for coordinating our Courageous Conversations about Race professional development during Pre-Service Week!!

Monday, August 26, 2019
First day of School – Welcome Back!!

Tuesday, August 27, 2019
SLC Meeting

Wednesday, August 28, 2019
SLC Meeting
Department Planning Period Meeting

Thursday, August 29, 2019
Department Planning Period Meeting

Friday, August 30, 2019
The first week of instruction is the time to set the stage for the Advisory by investing students in the plan for their learning. As discussed previously, community building is important throughout the year, but particularly the first week.  Course diagnostics are also an important part of the first week, and students should be encouraged to try their best, so that we have good information on what they know and what they still don’t know.  Results of diagnostics should be shared with students, since this forms the baseline for their Path of Progress (POP) sheet, and their process of monitoring their own growth.

There is also a more collaborative way we use to assess students background knowledge, which consists of sharing and discussing the Big Idea Template for the unit with students,  so they can read it and share what they may already know, what they find interesting, what they find  confusing, and what they want more information about.  Reviewing the Big Idea Template for the unit with students is actually an assessment that will provide the teacher with great information on how to sequence the content, and how to differentiate with and for students.  Following the review of the Big Idea Template, teachers share the GRASPS with students, and engage in a similar discussion and planning exercise. This will build student excitement and motivation to complete the project.

Starting off the year with formative assessments that students can analyze with you, will build a powerful partnership for learning!

The Instructional Calendar is a living document that houses all of the major curricular requirements, assessments, and schoolwide events.  Please check it weekly, as it changes as events are added or moved. The calendar is curated by members of the Admin team, and Mr. Magee, Science LEAP lead, curates and adds events or items that are submitted by Department Chairs.  If you have an event or item that you think should be added to the Instructional Calendar, please submit it to your Department Chairperson first, and then your Department Chair will submit for inclusion if appropriate.



Diana Perez will serve as Chairperson for the Dual Language Department!
Kimberly Troy will serve as Counseling Department Chairperson!
Ismenia Garcia-Carmona will serve as Coordinator of Middle School Extended Day!
Bridget Bruggeman will serve as World Language Department Chairperson!

Please congratulate all of our new leaders!

CHEC’s Academic Leadership Team consists of all Department Chairs and Leap Leads, as well as any interested staff member.  In order to increase shared leadership, ALT team meetings are open to all, and a staff member can attend one or as many meetings as he or she likes.  The purpose of the ALT Team is to guide the school in achieving our Comprehensive School Plan goals, by reviewing data and developing and implementing strategies.  The first ALT team Meeting will be Wednesday, August 28, at 3:30 pm in the High School Library.

Curran Chopra and Akshar Patel are forming a team of volunteers who plan to tutor seniors for all aspect of college applications and college access during this fall.  Presently, they are recruiting a cohort of college student volunteers from Howard University, Trinity Washington University, American University and Georgetown.

Mr. Chopra began this project the DC Learn and Serve program, to provide low-income DC high school students with the resources, motivation, and mentorship to perform to their capabilities on standardized testing required for college and navigate through the college application process.  His vision is to connect undergraduate students with high school juniors so the college students who have the experience of taking the SAT/ACT and applying to college can offer their expertise and knowledge to their younger peers.
Thanks for your continued support of Special Olympics, and especially of our Unified Sports events!

Time: Wednesday’s after-school from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. (Beginning October, 2019)
Length: The workshops begin first week of October and end by Christmas Break
Location: Computer Lab (Room 407)
Students: 25 to 30 students

Volunteer Duties: Volunteers will provide essay writing support – Common App Essays – helping decide structure, students have stories to share but need help capturing stories in an essay.

Additional Info: There is no need for curriculum/books, but college student volunteers will bring their applications, essays to share with students. A collection of sample Common App and supplemental essays will be provided.

Students will be working to apply to a list of 5 schools they have developed with CHEC College Counselor. Ms. Henry.

Time: Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Length: The program begins in September
Location: CHEC
Students: TBA

Volunteer Duties: volunteer will help students work on applications, essay-writing, resumes, other preparation for a post-secondary education
Snacks will be provided at the sessions.
Raffles at the sessions will have prizes of college paraphernalia – when students complete the workshop and their essays, they can enter raffle and win paraphernalia

College tours will be discussed and planned.

In June, the DC office of American Library Association interviewed Lincoln Librarian Angela Falkenberg as part of a library advocacy video series - the video went live recently!  Here is the link:

Donors Choose is a great resource for all teachers. You can receive a mini grant to support a special project or initiative.  Please see some of our recent Donors Choose grantees! You can reach out to them for support in obtaining your own grant!

This summer, through the philanthropic site DonorsChoose.org Mr. Magee successfully funded a classroom project "Bioremediation Study in Advanced Biology" that was successful a GROWLAB CLASSROOM GARDENING CENTER.

Here is a summary of Mr. Magee’s request:

His Project
Students will be given the chance to design a laboratory experiment that seeks to evaluate the effect of different environmental (e.g. light, humidity, temperature, etc.) factors on plant growth. Given the soil, pots, and seeds students will use this cart to compare the growth of plants (both rate and overall size).

The ability to track the data over time is what will set this work apart.

Because this cart will live in our classroom, learners will take ownership of the experiment through daily analysis and be able to compare results within and amongst groups. Furthermore, this experience will highlight key points of experimental design. Students will use this knowledge to succeed in the STEM field for years to come.

This summer, through the philanthropic site DonorsChoose.org Ms. Perez successfully funded a classroom project "Help Me Give My Students a Place to Explore".

She has received the following classroom supplies:
• Three DD121 - Survive the Quake Engineering Kit
• LC3540X - Prepared Slides - Complete Set
• Three LA910 - Take-Apart Human Body Models
• TC472 - Home Sweet Classroom Bundle

Her Project
When it comes to our students learning we want them to explore their surroundings and acknowledge the world around them. My classroom will give students a wide imagination. I want them to expand their learning and to look back and acknowledge how learning about their surroundings can help in their future. As they grow and progress they will be able to work together and to build a strong mindset and inform others about what they learn in science class, for example, projects, and lessons. For example, they can use the Survive the Quake Engineering Kit to build an anti-seismic building and to learn about high risk places and how these structures are made for these type of areas. Another example of a lesson is using the Take-Apart Human Body which would help the student comprehend how the organs work together to make the human body function. My students can work independently very well as well as in a group. When my students share their ideas I want them to be productive, team working, and be in a positive learning environment.

A developed environment will help my students in expanding their experience.

I also want to give my students the opportunity to choose paths they are curious about. For example I want them to be able to explore and learn more about new things including science. My students show growth in learning but with your help they will be able to explore new things and show their growth in different ways.

This summer, through the philanthropic site DonorsChoose.org Ms. Perez successfully funded a classroom project "Snacks for Price!".

For this project Ms. Nunez received:
• Quaker Chewy Granola Bars, 25% Less Sugar, Variety Pack, 116 Bars
• Four of Pringles Snack Stacks Potato Crisps Chips, Flavored Variety Pack, Original, Cheddar Cheese, and Sour Cream and Onion, 12.9 oz (18 Cups)
• Two of Quaker Chewy Dipps Chocolate Chip Granola Bars, 14 Bars (Pack of 12)
• Four of Ultimate Snacks Care Package, Classic Variety Assortment of Chips, Cookies, Crackers, & Nuts, 40 Count

Snacks for Price!

Her Project
I want to have ways to help my students stay engaged in the class and there is nothing better than having incentives. We can have fun games with prizes every week for all of them and they can have something that they really like.

Knowing they have snacks will encourage them to concentrate on their work and it will also help students that may not get much to eat at home.

I know that this project will be, without a doubt, probably one of my kids' favorite. With your help, this project will touch a heart as it fills a stomach.

Students that are Out-of-Area  
During the past school year, we noticed a pattern of middle and high school students wandering into the wrong school. For this new year, please be mindful that Middle School students should not be in the High School at all, and certainly not without a pass. High School students should only be in the Middle School on the Lincoln 3rd floor. The route for High School students to the 3rd floor Lincoln is through the Bell 2nd floor and on to Lincoln 2nd floor landing and up the stairs to the 3rd floor.  They should not use the 1st or 2nd floor Lincoln to get to the 3rd floor Lincoln. Students that are not complying should be written a referral, so they can earn a consequence.

Detention is a first intervention we have for students to check and correct their behavior in your classrooms. Students being informed of this consequence is vital to the effectiveness of the consequence.  Remember to use our 5 step process with fidelity so that our students will not earn a greater consequence of ISS and thus lose valuable class time

We always need more support at dismissal from 3:15pm until 3:35pm (High School), 4:15pm until 4:35pm (Middle School). Please follow students all the way out to the front of the building. Students should be encouraged to move on toward their bus stops/metro quickly. Teachers and staff that can make themselves available to stay out front will be greatly appreciated.

Cafeteria Support
All lunches have their ups and their downs. We always appreciate additional supports in the cafeteria on days that teachers are available. Check-ins with students build relationships and adult presence supports our daily procedures in lunch.

Athletics are an integral part of the educational program and a means to accomplish the goals of education. Our athletic program exists for the welfare of students and the contributions it makes to their educational experience.  Athletic participation builds self-esteem and confidence and provides the necessary tools for success.  The interaction between individuals on the fields of sport teaches students the value of teamwork, while developing the proper competitive spirit, combined with a sense of fairness.
The Northwest Courier/Tadi Abedje
August 16, 2019
The Bell Multicultural Griffins’ high school football team capped off a successful 2018 campaign by capturing the D.C. State Athletic Association Class A title. It was their sixth consecutive season of being in the championship game. After finishing with an 11-0 record last year, what are the Griffins’ goal heading into 2019? Well, if you ask head coach Daniel Tyson, the goal is to repeat.

“We’re really focused on putting this team in the right position to have the possibility of actually repeating,” Tyson said. “It’s always been our goal to get up to the Stars division. The only way to do that is to win two championships in a row. We’ve been super focused on doing things the right way and preparing this team to do the same thing that last year’s team did.”

But this team will look different this season. About 20 seniors graduated after last season — including key players like Jeremiah Richardson, Rashaad Harris, and Ronnell St. John.

“It’s always a big deal when you lose that many seniors. But the other challenge is you don’t know what the strength of your team is coming in. It’s going to take us some time to figure that out and [put] people in the right position,” Tyson said.

Another challenge is that every team in the Stripes division has gotten better. The Ron Brown Monarchs are experienced, with a majority of their roster filled with seniors. The Coolidge Colts are primed to improve this season, especially since they hired Kingsman Academy’s Kevin Nesbitt as their head coach. Anacostia is building a really good program, which is led by experienced head coach Jason Lane. Isiah Harris will be taking over as head coach of the Phelps Panthers, after leading the Cardoza Clarks to the playoffs two years ago.

The Griffins are looking forward to senior offensive lineman Eric Wells and linebacker Elijah Childs, who were first-team all-DCIAA last season, to step up this season. Fans should also keep an eye on freshman quarterback Zion Peers, Tybias Barton, and Martell West in 2019. Those players are expected to make an impact this year.

Tyson wants his players to embody the five traits that make a Griffin football player: coachable, loves to practice, team-first attitude, dominates the competition, and self-discipline.

“When I have issues with their performance, I always go back to those traits,” Tyson said. “We have some games where we go over what are some of the characteristics to keep them up to speed of what it looks like. “A lot of it is a culture shock for these ninth and tenth graders. They’ve never been in a part of a program where I’m asking them to think these are the characteristics I want you to display every single day.

So it’s an ongoing process and conversation around making sure they display it.”

Tyson also raved about his coaching staff — saying he believes the “unbelievable group of coaches” they have will prepare the players really well.

“So when we lose players, it’s the next player up. And it’s about coaching and developing them to see what they do best. I feel really confident in this group, even though it’s a younger group. I feel extremely confident in the coaches preparing and getting them in the right position,” said Tyson.

Childs, a team captain, echoed his coach’s sentiments. “Coach Tyson is a hard-working coach, and he devotes most of his time to our team even though he has his family. He pushes us and even though we may not always like his message, he always wants the best for us. He’s a coach who wants us to look at the bigger picture beyond football,” said Childs.

For their first game of the season, the Griffins will travel to Ballou High School to take on the Ballou Knights on Friday, August 30, at 6 p.m.


Monday the 26th
No Games

Tuesday the 27th
High School Girls Soccer – vs. District of Columbia International – at CHEC Field at 4:00 p.m.

Wednesday the 28th
No Games

Thursday the 29th
No Games

Friday the 30th
Bell Boys Soccer – vs. Washington International at Washington International at 4:00 p.m.
Bell High School Football – vs. Ballou at Ballou at 6:00 p.m.

Saturday the 31st
No Games
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