11-21-2022 - CHEC BULLETIN

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Principal: Maria Tukeva

NOVEMBER 21, 2022:

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

All Columbia Heights Education Campus graduates will be prepared to succeed in college, careers and civic life as leaders in the quest for social justice and anti-racism.  Our scholars are self-motivated, intellectually curious critical thinkers who value multilingualism and diversity.  

We are entering the holiday season, and as leaders in the quest for social justice and anti-racism,  as intellectually curious thinkers, it is important to explore with our students the history of the holidays we celebrate. It is important never to take at face value, the histories we have been told, and to always question and look deeper for truth.

We now know that the narrative which has accompanied the Thanksgiving holiday, is neither accurate, nor does it represent the perspective of the Native Americans.  There is now a National Day of Mourning on the fourth Thursday of November, as a protest against the traditional story of Thanksgiving.  The experience of Native Americans after coming in contact with Europeans,  was one of oppression and displacement.  It is important to educate ourselves and others about the myth versus the reality.  

As a way to honor Native Americans, and the land of theirs which we currently occupy,  we can live the human centered values of gratitude, compassion, and sharing, with Native American communities, our families, friends and our communities.   These values go beyond a story that was invented, and are something to aspire to every day.

I hope the upcoming holiday provides all with time to share with family and friends, opportunity to help others, and most importantly, time to rest and rejuvenate mind, body, and soul.   Please be sure to exercise the utmost self care!   Thank you to all members of our CHEC Team, for being an amazing group of humans dedicated to the greater good.


Shout out to all Redesign Team and Innovation Team  members!  Our two Innovation Teams – Food Equity and Interdisciplinary Projects/International Travel worked on gathering primary source data last week.  The Interdisciplinary Projects team conducted empathy interviews with  students, teachers and administrators about our GRASPS and projects, and the learning experience.  The Food Equity team interviewed students, staff and food service representatives about the quality of the food, and developed a survey about food quality that will be implemented through Advisory after the holiday break.

Ms. Penn and I visited  Purdue Polytechnic High School in Indianapolis, to learn more about their Project Based Learning approach.  The school we visited has adopted design thinking as a way to conduct all classes and learning.  All 9th and 10th grade students take a course in Design Thinking, and then develop projects based on what the school needs or is interested in.   For example, a teacher who was having classroom management issues, asked one of the Design Classes to conduct a full design process of how he might solve the problem.  A student from the Design class came to his class to observe, and conduct empathy interviews.   Following this process of research, the students in the Design class will present ideas and prototypes  for the teacher who brought forth the problem.  Another innovative aspect of the curriculum is the creation of Passion Projects, similar to what we did on What’s Up Wednesday.  The fourth period of the day students select a nine week Passion Project, based on teacher and student interest.  One teacher wanted to create a in school coffee shop, and the class did just that.  They bought coffee machines, designed a counter, menu, and distribution system.

We observed a high  level of student engagement and academic discourse , due to the element of choice, and the internalization of design thinking by all students and staff.   We  came away with many insights about how to implement design thinking on a schoolwide basis as a foundation for learning and change.   There will be opportunities for additional staff members to attend Inspiration Visits throughout this school year.  To see more of the work of the Innovation Teams, please put December 20th on your Calendar for our Innovation Gallery Walk.

If you have identified a problem  you would like help in addressing through the design thinking process, please send a description of the problem.    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!
For attendance at Focus Groups or with Innovation Team  meetings held after school we will offer Admin Premium, and up to 20 students who participate in the Innovation Teams will receive a $200 stipend and Community Service hours.  Please speak with your students, and find students who would like to become involved in the design of one or more of the innovations.

"From the desk of Lincoln Knights Growth Academy Program:

Dear colleagues, please check out the link below if you are interested in supporting small groups of Middle School students after school. WTU members will be compensated $40 per hour, non WTU members will be paid according to their hourly rate. To join our team, make sure to complete and submit the form: https://forms.office.com/r/ugEtz18MAr

If you would like to learn more or have any questions, please contact Ms. Ramirez at gabriela.ramirez@k12.dc.gov. Thanks in advance for considering supporting our Knights!"


  • Kudos to Coach A, Coach Tyson, Coach Duvall, and all of the coaches and players of the Football Team! CHEC had an outstanding season, and lost a hard fought contest against Coolidge on Saturday!Coach Tyson was DCIAA Coach of the year, and Demiko Suggs was named Player of the Year! 11 other players made the DCIAA first and second All Met Teams – Andre Gardner, Jayden Watts, Antonio Washington, Natavis Harvey, Tawj Thomas, Teaurjay Harrison, Zion Suggs, James Stepehens, Chidiire Nwokwu, Joshua Hancock, and Chris Plamer!!
  • Shout out to Mr. Magee, Mr. Smith, Ms. Avila, Ms. Chiu, and the entire Middle School Counseling Team for a successful ANET Math Testing!
  • Shout out to Ops and all who supported!
  • Shout out to Dean Iglesias for starting a Middle School Student Leadership Team!
  • Shout out to Mr. Athmer and Mr. H. Diaz for a great video about equitable grading practices!!
  • Shout out to the Culture Team for continuing “Attention” meetings, and reducing late arrivals by 30%!!!
  • Shout out to Mr. Duvall for the morning and afternoon announcements!
  • Kudos to all members of the XQ Team for working on our two Innovation Teams!

The grading window for Term 1 is now open! Now is our time to be audacious in how we approach teaching, learning, and grading. We must move forward with empathetic and trusting partnerships. How will our students remember their learning experiences? Will students want to continue to be lifelong learners and leaders in the quest for social justice? Or, will students seek to bail on a system that clearly isn’t moving forward with them in mind?

The purpose of norming our grading practices is to positively promote learning by addressing the inconsistencies and inequities found in our gradebooks. Three essential questions should be asked and reflected upon when creating, implementing, and promoting grading practices:

  • What are the possible impacts of a failing grade on a student?
  • What equity challenges exist in a grading system?
  • How can we establish grading policies and practices that promote learning for all students?

Week 3 of Advisory 2

It is the third week of the Second Advisory, and a very short week leading into the holiday break.   During this week, it is important to continue to reset norms, and to make sure students have started the first GRASPS.  Launching the GRASPS should involve activities designed to gain student interest and motivation, and to provide students with choice in how they approach the project.  

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

The Whole Child

The Whole Child Antiracist initiative focuses on Trust building interactions.  Students need to know that they can trust you as an adult to give them the support they need to be successful in the classroom.  If the student cannot trust you, they will not be able to learn from you, and they may become distant.  It is imperative that the relationship is not ruined by Trust.  To help with those Trust building interactions, the Whole Child Anti racist initiative has a Trust building Continuum that will help assist with building those Trust building interactions.  Here is the link to read more about the Trust building Continuum:  Link to the Trust building Continuum

Angenette Planter
Environmental Science Teacher

To Live, To Learn, To Love!

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.

Assessment Corner

As we enter the Thanksgiving week, we’ve completed ANET 1 on the middle school side.  I cannot say enough how grateful I feel for the responsiveness and flexibility of the MS team.  Despite internet issues, both tests went very smoothly.  We’re working our through make-ups now, and will begin analyzing the data as it comes in.

High school teachers, please be advised, HS ANET 1 is slated to be 11/30 & 12/1 – the week that we return from Thanksgiving.

Testing Coordinator,
Pete Magee

Professional Development

Our Shared Leadership Subcommittee and the Instructional coaches on the ALT Team will be surveying staff and helping to develop a PD plan for the year. We are at 78% on the Insight Survey and have received an extension until November 29! Please fill out the survey if you haven’t already!

The ALT Team met last week and reviewed data and information on the results of the Professional development Survey.  


Spread the word. Apply Now!!! The Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship Application is open for community college students looking to transfer to a 4-year university next fall.

This life-changing scholarship program awards community college students who are transferring to a four-year college in fall 2023 up to $55,000 per year to complete their bachelor’s degree, as well as personalized advising, career counseling, and more. The application deadline is January 12, 2023.  



Mosaic's third annual High School Playwriting Contest is underway! Students in grades 9-12 at public and charter schools in the Washington, DC metro area including, Montgomery County, Prince George’s County, and Northern Virginia, are eligible to submit their play for the chance to receive a cash prize and have their plays read and directed by professional theater artists!

Winning plays will be read during a live presentation at the Petworth Branch of the DC Public Library on Saturday, January 21 at 2PM.

Submit your play by November 28 for consideration.


Janelle Monáe - Tightrope [feat. Big Boi] (Video)
No matter what, the show must go on...Life is going to throw you lemons and curve balls.  Everyone may not understand your “why” or like it...But you have to keep moving with confidence and pride.  

Please check out the National Awareness for November:

  • National Family Caregivers Month
  • American Diabetes Month
  • Lung Cancer Awareness Month
  • Movember (Men's Health Awareness)
  • Epilepsy Awareness Month
  • National Adoption Month
  • National Alzheimer's Disease Month
  • Military Family Month
  • Home Care, Hospice & Palliative Care Month


  • Our norm focus this month is We are digital citizens., please be sure to discuss with students our norm focus and reward them with Kickboard points for responsible use of technology:

    • Using technology responsibly during class by accessing only academic platforms
    • Proper care of devices with a protective case
    • Utilizing technology to enhance their learning and mastery of the content
    • Helping peers and staff members with technology-related issues

  • Thank you to all who supported the two-day trial run of “Attention Meetings”.  The Culture Team will continue Attention Meetings for all students arriving after 9:00 am through the next couple of weeks. Your grade level APs will share the data and next steps with you all.
        • We have reduced        in the number of students tardy to school in High        School by 48% !!! Great job to everyone        who has helped to make this impact
        • Middle School Tardy        attendance has consistently averaged about 40 students tardy per day. Kudos to your efforts.

  • The Dean Team will begin making updates to Kickboard and prepare a best practices PD for teachers during SLC and for teachers not using Kickboard.

Upcoming PBIS Incentives
(Please note that this schedule is tentative and is subject to change at the discretion of Culture Team Leaders.)

  • Our next incentive will be December 2nd (Indoor Block Party) Students will need $400 in Kickboard

PBIS Reminders and Celebrations

Teacher All-Stars (500 Interactions or Higher from 11/7 - 11/13)

  • Omar Abusabha
  • Tevin Simard
  • Sandra Garcia Pinilla
  • Kenrry Alvarado
  • Dwight Simon
  • Jorge Linero
  • Latrice Quickley
  • Ruden-Sabastian Brown
  • Katelynn Reyes
  • Keegan Brush

Dean Henderson will deliver a small token of appreciation to your mailboxes by Tuesday. Please look out for an email letting you know your gift has been delivered.

Kickboard norms reminder
Currently, we have about 50% participation in staff rewarding students with Kickboard points.  Remember, Kickboard helps to build positive classroom culture and should be integrated in your classroom incentives, norms and strategies to manage your classroom.  
  • 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)  


DCPS Fall Listening Sessions: https://dcpsstrong.com/strategic-plan/

Student Support Forms:
Reminder: Please bookmark this link for future behavioral referrals:
Use the following forms for future submissions:


  • Middle School Teams for a successful day of Math ANET Testing last week.
  • Mrs. Penn and all the team members of XQ for offering activities and games to students during lunches.
  • Our Bell Football Team and coaching staff for having a strong season that led them all the way to the Championship “Gravy Bowl’ game.  Win or lose, you are amazing!!!
  • Everyone who is helping with Attention Meetings.


This week the Culture Team would like to shine the spotlight on Ms. Helena Burnett, Behavioral Tech.  Ms. Burnett currently supports the Middle School team with student culture.  She is constantly in the halls responding to student needs by redirecting students to class or addressing their concerns.  After school, you may find Ms. Burnett outside (or the parking garage) leading track drills with students on the track team. Ms. Burnett is one of the quiet heroes of the Culture Team, who puts out many fires and with fidelity, models the Core Values of CHEC.

Thank you, Ms. Burnett, for your high level of integrity and constant support!!!

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 HS volleyball team defeated DCI but lost to Jackson Reed in the state playoffs.  The middle school volleyball team defeated Oyster Adams but lost to Johnson in the playoffs.  Congratulations to both our middle and high school volleyball teams on great seasons.  HS FB defeated Anacostia in the DCIAA semifinals and will play Coolidge in the Gravy Bowl (championship) this upcoming Saturday.  

No Games

No Games

No Games

DCIAA Archery Championship at CHEC @ 4:00

No Games

HS FB vs. Coolidge at Roosevelt @ 12:00pm

BSOC: 2 – 3 – 2
GSOC: 1 – 5
VB: 8 – 6

BSOC: 6 – 6 – 2
FB: 10 – 1
GSOC: 6 – 4
VB: 14 – 6
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 Basketball: Coach Schroeder (michael.schroeder@k12.dc.gov)
Girls Basketball: Coach Constance Hanlon (constance.hanlon@k12.dc.gov)
Indoor Track: Coach Burnett (helena.burnett@k12.dc.gov)
Wrestling: Coach Alvarado (kenrry.alvarado@k12.dc.gov)

High School
Bowling: Coach Ferguson (mya.ferguson@k12.dc.gov)
Cheerleading: Coach Dionne Wright (dionnewright02@gmail.com)
Boys Indoor Track: Coach Robinson (markblaytonrobinson@gmail.com)
Girls Indoor Track: Coach Pinto (miguel.pinto@k12.dc.gov)
JV Boys Basketball: Coach Joyner (jason.joyner@k12.dc.gov)
Varsity Boys Basketball: Coach Edmonds (lionel.edmonds@k12.dc.gov)
Varsity Girls Basketball: Coach Ficklin (rodricus.ficklin2@k12.dc.gov)
Swimming: Coach Allen: (reiss.allen@k12.dc.gov)
Wrestling: Coach Alvarado (kenrry.alvarado@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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