• Principal Berkowitz

Advancing School Goals

Wanted: routine and regularity. We all made it through an incredibly dynamic week. A three-day weekend, a “vaccine day,” and then the inclement weather impacted everyone on Thursday and Friday. I want to thank our students, staff, and caregivers for staying focused on our students’ learning and persevering through the challenges.

One step we’re taking for regularity is working on our budget. We’ve started the process with the LSAT and it will continue through next week. Ideally any school’s budget is a tool to advance the goals of the school. So how will our budget do that? It’s not entirely clear. What I am excited about is the alignment that I feel with our LSAT and Academic Leadership Team around our priorities. We share the sense of urgency to ensure all our students are loved, challenged, and prepared with our universal programming while simultaneously working hard to ensure there are effective academic, behavioral, social-emotional, and attendance supports in place for every child. This is necessary pursuit that will be a long journey and it will be worth it. When we talk about equity, a lot of our conversation has been around mindset and identity. Budgets can be about concrete practices and opportunities and, in some cases, a lack of those opportunities. It’s hopeful to know that our school leadership, our parent leadership, and teacher leadership teams are aligned in this endeavor, which makes progress all the more achievable.

For now, budget conversations are private to LSAT members only. However, the public can access any school’s past budget and current budget allocations on this website.




  • Youtube and Content Restrictions on DCPS-Issued Devices

  • Snow and Delayed Openings

  • Third and First Grade Updates

  • Panorama Survey- Round 2

  • Books & Belonging with Berkowitz February 24 at 11:30 am to noon

  • Peabody Spirit Week is coming soon! March 1-5!

  • Announcing Peabody’s March Virtual Parent/Child Chapter Book Club

Youtube and Content Restrictions on DCPS-Issued Devices

We understand that several students that have DCPS devices have been unable to access some YouTube and teacher content that has been shared for asynchronous instruction. DCPS has blocked the usage of sites that may contain inappropriate content for our students. We do understand this can create difficulties and we are currently working to implement a plan to support the issue. We hope to have an update soon. Thank you for your continued patience and partnership!

Snow and Delayed Openings

We all know our model could support an on-time start for virtual and a delayed start for in-person students and staff. It’s frustrating that we haven’t been given permission to do this, but I will continue to advocate for it as I don’t see a context-specific reason for taking the instructional time away from our virtual students. District wide, however, there are many schools that opted for a simulcast model, where the in-person teacher has a class of students at school and is simultaneously teaching online to a virtual class at home. That is the district’s reasoning for keeping things consistent.

Third and First Grade Updates

Ms. O’Donnell has returned from her leave and volunteered to serve in person for a 3rd grade teacher on leave. She has started her in-person role as of Thursday last week. Ms. Talisman will continue in her role of 1st grade math teacher until at least the end of March. We are grateful to have the consistency in first grade and the ability to keep both grade levels fully staffed.

Panorama Round Two

The Panorama Student Survey for grades 3 and up will open online on Monday, February 22. Parents/guardians have the right to opt children out of the survey. If you are 18 or older, you can opt yourself out of the survey. Details and instructions are in our Notification and Opt-Out Letter. To review survey questions, get more information on the Panorama Surveys, or download the opt-out letter in other languages, visit The opt-out Form will remain open through March 5.

Watkins will administer this survey on February 22 during morning meetings.

Books & Belonging with Berkowitz February 24 at 11:30 am to noon

Join BBB Team and Senor Lopez at 11:30 am on Wednesday February 24 to learn about Afro-Latina singer Celia Cruz The BBB team is excited to welcome our very own Watkins Spanish teacher Senor Lopez for another Black History Month session featuring Afro-Latina singer Celia Cruz! We will learn about her life and career and hear her extraordinary voice!

Peabody Spirit Week is coming soon! March 1-5!

Dear Peabody families, We hope your students join the staff in showing our Panther Pride and SPIRIT during the first week of March! Here’s the plan: Monday, March 1 = Crazy Hair or Hat Day; Tuesday, March 2 (also Read Across America Day) = Rainbow or Favorite Color Day; Thursday, March 4 = Sports Day (show your favorite team or sport); Friday, March 5 = Wacky/Mixed-Up Day (inside-out, mix-match, anything goes).

Announcing Peabody’s March Virtual Parent/Child Chapter Book Club

Ms. Houghton (PreK 4 teacher) and Ms. Bloom (Librarian) are happy to announce a 3-session chapter book club open to all grades at Peabody for the month of March (4:15-5pm on Tuesday March 9, 16 and 23). The book we’ll read is “Zoe and Sassafras: Dragons and Marshmallows” by Asia Citro, a great story that mixes real science with some fun fantasy! It is also the first in an 8-book series so if it’s a hit, there’s more fun to follow! Here is the link to sign up. At the time of this writing, DC Public Library has 13 hard copies (but most are out on loan) and 2 eBook copies (both available) and SORA has 10 total eBook copies, but only 2 currently available. We are happy to ensure that all families wanting to participate in the club, have a copy of the book. Just reach out with any questions to or Hope you and your student(s) can join us!

Last Week of Peabody’s Winter Reading Challenge!

Dear Peabody families and staff, As snow/rain/sleet fall outside, the Literacy Committee wants to remind you that we have just one more week of our winter reading challenge “Winding Our Way Through a Winter Reading Wonderland”! Peabody readers have logged (with your wonderful help!) almost 5,400 books since we began in late December and our ‘Super Story Snowfriend” has at least one snowball over half filled with rainbow colors! Let’s log as much reading as we can in these final wintry days of February and we’ll celebrate on Read Across America Day on March 2nd! (Need help? All the info is available on the Peabody Library Canvas page – just click on the bottom right button labeled “Winter Reading Challenge Info”. Or email Ms. Bloom at



Upcoming Open Houses - Parents please share!

On March 16 we will host open houses for both schools. Please share this flier with anyone who may be interested in joining our school community.

Peabody Watkins Open House Flyer
Download PDF • 128KB

Black History Month Theme - “The Crown Act: Equity, Efficacy, Equality and Empowerment.”

The Crown Act is legislation that was passed last year banning hair discrimination in the work place and school. We are planning four Acts - Act I: Equity, Act: II Efficacy, Act III: Equality, Act IV: Empowerment. We are planning creative ways to incorporate art, literature and other ways to engage our students in this theme and important lessons from the past and today.

Please read this note that will be shared by your students' teacher.

Return to School Criteria for Students

Anytime a student or staff is out due to illness, DCPS requires that documentation from a healthcare provider or contact tracing force be provided to the school as clearance before the individual can return to the school building.

Student’s doctor’s note should be provided to the main office or emailed to:

Watkins: Peabody:

See this flowchart which provides guidance for different scenarios:

Supper and Snack Offerings for Students

Starting Thursday, February 18th, Food and Nutrition Services will be providing in person learning students with the opportunity to receive snack and supper to take home with them. Click on the links for menu offerings: Supper Menu and Snack Menu.

Additional details below:

  • Food Service Staff will distribute a pre-packaged meal kit containing 1 supper and 1 snack to students in the classroom for them to take home with them.

  • Supper meals will be served cold with reheating instructions to take home.

  • Students can take the supper/snack meal kit even if they didn’t receive breakfast or lunch from school that day.

  • Snack and supper will be free for all students.

School Building Closed Every Wednesday and Reminder of Visitor Protocol

Reminder that the school will be closed every Wednesday for deep cleaning. Additionally, reminder of the following visitor management protocols that have been put in place to health and safety of our school community, minimize the number of visitors and actively monitor who visits our school.

  • When possible, all meetings will take place virtually. If an in person is required, all visitors must be scheduled at least 24 hours before the requested appointment

  • To schedule an appointment, please contact the school’s main office. Someone from the administration team must approve the visit for it to be confirmed.

  • Visitors without a scheduled appointment will not be permitted entry into the building.

Log Into Canvas Daily, Including Wednesday

Families should log into Canvas every day, including Wednesday to be marked present. It is very important to note that although live instruction does not take place on Wednesday, students still need to log-in. Daily log-in should take place between 6am and 11:59pm. If you miss a day or something prevents you from logging on, email our attendance team.



Submitting excuse notes: During virtual learning, all excuses notes should be emailed to our attendance teams. All DCPS legal excuse reasons remain the same as last school year.




Community Messages

Click on the following to link to our website pages for updates on the following community groups:

Parent Teacher Association

Race, Class, and Equity Group

Local School Advisory Team (LSAT)

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