09-11-2022 - CHEC BULLETIN

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SLC MEETING - 8:00-8:30 AM



SEPTEMBER 14 - 10AM & 5:30PM

Principal: Maria Tukeva

SEPTEMBER 12, 2022:

This week’s focus is on the phrase from the Mission,

Socio-emotional learning, empathy and restorative practices are the foundations of our school climate and culture.  We foster a growth mindset and find joy and purpose in learning and collaborating.  We value student choice and voice..”  .”

For this week, our big event and focus is Back to School Morning and Night. I am so excited to welcome our parents and family members to Back to School Morning and Night! This will be our first In Person Back to School Event in over two years!  I love to see our parents engage in conversations and collegiality with our staff and teachers, and see relationships built that will last over the years. It is also wonderful to hear from parents about their goals and dreams for their children.

This is our opportunity to engage all parents, and build a strong relationship with them, by making them welcome and valued in our building.  Our morning session will be from 10 am to 11:30 am, and will consist of a brief gathering in the cafeteria, where we will separate by grade level for introductions and priorities for the year by grade. Sharing our focus on norms with parents will be very important.  From there, parents can be taken by student or staff guides to visit the classrooms. Since this will be during PLT time it will be a great opportunity for parents to see how PLT operates for goal setting and mentoring.  For the evening session, there will be brief  gatherings by SLC/Grade in the Auditorium, Cafeteria, Gymnasium and Model UN, and then parents will receive student schedules, to be able to visit all of the classrooms of their child’s teachers.  Teachers will want to share their syllabus and current  GRASPS, and share opportunities for parents to participate in the instructional program.  It is also a good time to make sure we update contact information for parents.

My personal goal during this and all parent events, is to get to know as many parents as possible and to build trust so that they will feel comfortable reaching out and sharing thoughts, ideas and concerns.  I also hope to engage more of our parents in our Redesign process, so that our Redesign reflects their ideas and needs as well.

Thank you for all you do for our students and families.  Let’s welcome all CHEC Parents and Families back Home!


Thank you to all for your full engagement in our Faculty Meeting and Open Space Technology.  A special thank you to members of the Design Team and Admin Team for hosting tables on our innovative designs.  We will share a summary of the responses to the exit ticket, but some overall feedback was the desire for more details and more specific plans, the feeling that the innovations are aligned to the Big Ideas, and excitement about the innovations, in particular the Food Equity Project, International and Domestic Exchange Programs, and Flexible Scheduling and ILP.  As a school that continually seeks to improve its practices, we will continue to engage more voices and reach out to those whose voices are not yet prominent in the process.  We will be holding voluntary focus groups on specific innovations, so please be on the look out for those invitations. For attendance at Focus Groups held after school we will offer Admin Premium.  The next Design Team meeting will be next Wednesday, September 21, at 3:30 pm.  Please speak with your students, and find students who would like to become involved in the design of one or more of the innovations.

If you are already implementing something in your practice or curriculum this  year, that you think reflects the  two big ideas, or if you are interested in one of the innovations, please contact Maria Tukeva, Principal,  Ms. Krishunda Penn Pearson, Redesign Director, your SLC Administrator, or any member of the XQ Redesign Team.  Please join the Redesign Team, and please reach out to interested students or parents!


It is our priority to get technology into the hands of all students as soon as possible.  We commend Mr. Tobias and the Tech/Ops Team for their hard work in working on this goal.  In order to complete the process in a way that allows us to keep track of over 1500 devices, there are documentation and recording requirements. Last year, a significant number of  devices went missing, or were damaged or broken, or not returned by students. We now need replacements for each of these, and must document what occurred.  Each SLC administrator is responsible for working with his or her grade level to ensure that we have the correct data and status for all student devices.  Last week, through your advisory, you received a spreadsheet that needs to be filled out for all students.  Based on this, devices will be distributed, and replacement devices will be requested for those whose devices were lost, stolen or broken.

Please see your SLC Administrator for questions and concerns. Thank you for supporting this process!


  • Shout out to the XQ Design Team and all members of the Admin Team for a great Open Space Technology and Faculty Meeting!
  • Shout out to Ms. Savage for a great presentation to our 12th graders in Town Hall last week!
  • Kudos to Dr. Jackson, Ms.Pettiford and Ms. Bryant for a great Hospitality Networking Event at the Wharf last week!
  • Shout out to all members of the CHEC team for a great week 2!  
  • Shout  out to the Counselors for their continuing work on student schedules!
  • Shout out to Mr. Tobias and team for distribution of technology!
  • Shout out to all teachers, department chairs and others who are covering classes while we wait for all staff to be onboarded!

Meet Our Instructional Coaches
Name: Mr. Heber Díaz  
Role: High School Instructional Coach (multidisciplinary)

About Me: My name is Heber Diaz, I am from Washington, DC and graduated from CHEC in 2011. I have been back at CHEC as a social studies educator since 2016. For the past three years I was a member of the High School Dual Language team. You will also find me doing lots of work for our annual Scholarship Gala! I love photography. cinematography, music, cooking and traveling. I feel passionate about our school, our mission, and our community and partners in Columbia Heights. Ask me about the history of CHEC and the history of Black and Brown excellence in DC!  

What I look forward to this year: This year I am looking forward to helping foster a culture of achievement among students and teachers, and to helping teachers feel supported in the process. We are our students' biggest champions!

Name: Ms. Jovanda Warren
Role: Socio-Emotional Learning (SEL) Instructional Coach

About Me: Hi! My name is Jovanda Warren.  I am originally from Illinois but have resided in Washington DC for the last ten years.  This is my sixth year at CHEC, where I have acted as an AP Literature and Language teacher (shoutouts to MSB!).  I enjoy gardening, yoga, reading, and being with friends and family.  I am fiercely dedicated to ensuring the emotional and academic well-being of our students and faculty, and show this dedication through my role and the CHEC Equity team.  Find me in the hallways for anything you need, and I am happy to help!  

What I’m looking forward to this year: This year I am looking forward to supporting our faculty and students in building strong relationships and a joyful school community.  Please use me as a resource!

Name: Dr. Noel Emilius
Role: English learner (EL) co-teacher and instructional coach

About Me: Hi. My name is Noel Emilius. I am from New Jersey originally but then taught for 3 years in Massachusetts. Later I moved down to DC where I have been living for 10 years. I have taught 10th grade English at CHEC for 10 years as part of the fantastic dual language academy. I believe strongly in our school’s mission to create equitable curriculum and educational experiences for our students which prompted me to get a doctorate in teaching EL students in mainstream classrooms. When not at school, I am on the search for the best funfetti cake in the DMV or in Vermont with my family.

What I’m looking forward to this year: This year I am looking forward to working with our phenomenal staff, learning about a new content areas, and seeing our EL students succeed in all of their classes.

Name: Mrs. Jacqueline Vialpando-Strickland
Role: Instructional Coach/ Curriculum Designer/ New Teacher Mentor

About me: Keep It Simple and Silly with a sprinkle of fun to learn, understand and thrive.  My experiences from the classroom, community and national work have prepared me to serve and be a steward of the Latino and African American communities in the distinct locations where I have taught and worked; Austin, Texas, Los Angeles USD, Phoenix/ Roosevelt District, Montgomery County, and DC Public Schools. NM is home.
What I’m looking forward to this year: Redesigning what learning and teaching looks like, feels like, and sounds like from the perspective of our students and families will be an exciting and great collaborative feat for us.  Save the Date for Students and Parent creations with Teachers in Fall 2022 and Spring 2023.

Week 2 of Advisory 1

In the third week of the school year we continue to create relationships, memories, and discuss and practice our norms and ways of working with our students. We now build on this by engaging students in our content in a way that sparks their interest and motivation. The key way to do this is to pitch your first GRASPS in such a way that it allows students some choice in product, as well as an opportunity to provide feedback on what they are most excited to learn. Have students read the GRASPS, and do a Wow’s and Wonders protocol.  This will allow you to see what they want to learn, and make any modifications necessary to provide them with choice and voice.

The third week should also have a strong focus on practicing routines and rituals aligned to the norms. How do students enter your room? What do they do when they enter? What is the routine for handing in work? For Group Work, For leaving the classroom? All of these should be modelled and discussed explicitly as a part of your norms work.

During the second week, we are beginning to administer diagnostics, so we know how to align our instruction to meet student needs. Make sure you let students know that diagnostics do not carry and grade, and that they should do their best, but not worry about the results, because it is a tool for growth. The diagnostic should not be so difficult and rigorous that students give up on it – that would not render valid data on student needs.

Please reach out to SLC Administrators and Coaches for support and assistance.

Instructional Calendar

The Instructional Calendar is a living document that houses all the major curricular requirements, assessments, and schoolwide events. The Instructional Calendar is complete for the moment, however changes may be made and will be noted.  If you have any requests for additions to the Instructional Calendar, please contact Mr. Magee,peter.magee@k12.dc.gov, maria.tukeva@k12.dc.gov or your SLC Administrator.

Please view the 22-23  CHEC Instructional Calendar here.
Professional Development

We have some great Professional Development coming up, and you also have an opportunity to have input into our professional development for the  year.  These are all upcoming in September, with dates to be confirmed:

Training in Co-teaching Models and Best Practices – PD Provider – Blue Engine - 20 co-teaching pairs (SPED-Gen Ed, ELA-SLA, SPED-DL, ESL-Gen Ed) will have the opportunity to participate in a Community of Practice and practice high leverage co-teaching strategies that result in effective differentiation.  If you are interested, please see Ms. Ameyaw

Principles of Effective Dual Language Programs, Literacy Strategies for Language Learners in Bilingual Programs – PD Provider -Center for Applied Linguistics 16 leaders and up to 50 teachers will have the opportunity to receive this professional development.  If you are interested, please see M. Tukeva

Transformational Coaching PD Provider – Bright Morning (Elena Aguilar) – 14 LEAP Leaders, Admin, Department Chairs and Coaches will have the opportunity to receive professional development in coaching strategies in a community of practice. If you are interested, please see M. Tukeva

Our Shared Leadership Subcommittee on the ALT Team will be surveying staff and helping to develop a PD plan for the year.

click on image to play video

The World Smarts STEM Challenge is a virtual exchange program that supports STEM education in the United States and Ghana in collaboration with the DCPS Global Education programs. High school students from the Washington, D.C. metro area and secondary school students from across Ghana come together virtually to solve global issues in their communities with STEM solutions. The program improves STEM/ICT skills, strengthens cross-cultural communication, and develops global competence while enhancing students’ enthusiasm and commitment to STEM learning and careers.   Last cohort, Columbia Heights Educational Campus students, led by Ms. Angenette Planter, collaborated with Nkoranza Technical Institute students in Ghana to create prototype of a water powered vehicle to reduce emissions of carbon monoxides and carbon dioxides in the environment.  

The next cohort is in the Spring of 2023 and applications are due October 1st.  Click here to apply:


Week 2 of SY 2022-23 is officially in the books and we are overjoyed to have kicked off the new school year with a bang! Did you see some of these new faces on campus this week? What about some old ones?.

Not only did you probably see these faces, but this week we officially welcomed the following members of the culture team!

  • Beatriz Iglesias – Dean of Students
  • Monica Henderson – Dean of Students

Weekly our goal is to share important news updates on CHEC ‘Happenings’: Norms Updates, Health (E.g. Covid) updates, PBIS (E.g. Kickboard) updates, and Celebrations (E.g. Awareness Months, Student(s) of the Week/Month, etc..).

  • The Bell Griffins officially kicked off Week 2 of the football season with an AMAZING 51- 0 win over Eastern Senior Highschool Friday evening! They followed up that with another impressive 56-0 win over Thomas Jefferson High School in Week 3

  • The Culture Team ended last week with its first school wide incentive for the year. After a great week of reacclimating to the norms and demonstrating how they live and breathe in our classrooms and common spaces, students were treated with nearly 1000 popsicles during their lunches. Shout out to all the students that were apart of celebrating with us and helping out with the distribution. We couldn’t have done it without you.

*If you would like to contribute to our weekly bulletin, send information to cultureteam2021-22@DCk12.onmicrosoft.com.

Norms Temperature: Weekly we will highlight how we are ‘warming’ towards our school norms. During Week #1 each grade level will receive presentations on Norms in Common Areas, in addition to norms being taught during each period.
*Please take a moment to memorize and post norms in your classroom/office.

COVID- 19: Please visit https://dcpsstrong.com/testing/ for all matters pertaining to DCPS Test to return policy.

Unidos: Inclusivity for a Stronger Nation.
This year's theme for Hispanic Heritage Month is “Unidos: Inclusivity for a Stronger Nation

Morning Announcements will begin next week
Kickboard is up and running!

Please be on the lookout this week for an activation email from the Kickboard to activate your Kickboard accounts. The Culture team will be following up with PD for best practices with regards to giving points in the classroom and the community in the coming weeks.

Incentive Calendar (Fall Semester)

2nd – Ice Cream Social
16th  – Candy
30th  – Culture Food Option

14th – Extra Recess
28th  – Cell Phones

10th -  Staff vs. Student (Sprit Week)
30th – Skating

2nd -  Cell Phone and Games
16th – Field Trip  
  • 15 interactions per class and 45 interactions per day  
  • DO NOT deduct student dollars  
  • Do not attempt to inflate the day of the incentive
  • Use the first 15 and last 15 of class to give dollars  
  • Create in-class incentives (Do not deduct dollars)  

Here is where you will find weekly on-site and off-site trainings/PDs in Restorative Justice and Classroom Culture related offerings.

We are an RJ School! Look out for weekly trainings from https://restorativedc.org/events/.

Here are a few reminders of Rituals and Routines to being Week#2:

Weekly teachers should nominate students who have excelled in their class during that week. These nomination includes academic and/or behavioral acceleration. In addition, these nominees upheld CHEC's PRIDE:  Professionalism, Respect, Integrity, Diversity and Excellence! Please be sure to complete by 5pm every Thursday.

Use the following forms:

Student Support Forms:
Again, welcome to SY 2022-23!

Peace and Love,
The Dean Team

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.

BSOC: 0 - 0
GSOC: 0 - 0
VB: 0 - 0

BSOC: 1- 1
FB: 3 - 0
GSOC: 0 - 1
VB: 1 - 1


The HS FB team defeated Thomas Jefferson. The HS boys soccer team defeated EL Haynes and lost to DCI.  The HS girls soccer team lost to DCI.  The HS volleyball team lost to Jackson-Reed.


HS BSOC vs. Cardozo at Cardozo @ 4:00
HS GSOC vs. Jackson-Reed at Jackson-Reed @ 4:00

No Games

HS BSOC vs. Capital City PCS at CHEC @ 3:30
HS GSOC vs. Roosevelt at Coolidge @ 4:00

HS VB vs. HD Woodson at Cardozo @ 5:00pm

HS GSOC vs. Capital City PCS @ 3:30
HS FB vs. Ballou at Cardozo @ 6:00

No Games

To participate in sports, including tryouts, students must complete participation paperwork and upload their physical via https://www.thedciaa.com/participation-forms.  Anyone with questions, should contact the CHEC athletic director, Coach A in room D236, or via email at desmond.alexander@k12.dc.gov.

Fall sports include:

Middle School
Boys Cross Country: Coach Lionel Edmonds (lionel.edmonds@k12.dc.gov)
Girls Cross Country: Helena Burnett (helena.burnett@k12.dc.gov)
Boys Soccer: Coach Jarmar Layne (jarmarlayen123@gmail.com)
Girls Soccer: TBD
Volleyball: Coach Constance Hanlon (constance.hanlon@k12.dc.gov)

High School
Cheerleading: Coach Dionne Wright (dionnewright02@gmail.com)
Cross Country: Miguel Pinto (miguel.pinto@k12.dc.gov)
Boys Soccer: Coach Victor Molina (victor.molina@k12.dc.gov)
Girls Soccer: Coach Rhina Merino (rnmerino123@gmail.com)
Football:  Coach Daniel Tyson (dnltysn@gmail.com)
Volleyball: Coach Mafope Alao (mafope.alao@k12.dc.gov)

Desmond Alexander, CAA
Athletic Directo.  
Columbia Heights Educational Campus
Bell/Lincoln Multicultural Schools

(202)939-7700 Ext: 5207 (office)
(202)576-9147 (fax)

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