• Principal Berkowitz

CJ and Nana's World View

My world got a little bit bigger when I had the pleasure to read The Last Stop on Market Street with my Books and Belonging class.  I am so moved by this book – even now as I’m writing more than two days after reading it.  I rushed to read it to my girls Wednesday night.  The link above takes you to a read-aloud if you want some context for my CJ- and Nana-themed message for this week.

In one sense, this is a story of CJ’s equity journey one Sunday with his Nana.  For our class, Nana serves as an incredible model of love and acceptance, which leads to a sense of belonging for CJ in his world.  Her experience in the world is free from the judgement of others.  She’s purposefully caring for her grandson and providing opportunities for him to open his mind to the world.  CJ experiences something different from his “normal” and that is different from his friend’s experiences.  Nana is doing equity work by building CJ’s capacity to be empathetic and open-minded.  She perseveres by not letting CJ’s judgements go unchecked and reminds: “sometimes when you’re surrounded by dirt... you’re a better witness for what’s beautiful.”  Only when CJ frees himself from judgement and comparison does he find the rainbow and more importantly, the joy on Market Street.

A lot of questions come to mind when reading this book.  It makes me think, when am I like CJ?  When am I more like Nana?  I think it’s worthwhile to ask yourselves as well.


Term 2 Updates

A Look Forward: Upcoming Dates

  • Tuesday, Nov. 3: Election Day- No school for students

  • Friday, Nov. 6: 1/2 PD Day, 1/2 Records day for staff- No school for students

Student selection: we are moving forward with student selection, which was expected to begin at the central office level today. Families of selected students for in-person learning classes should have received an email from DCPS and our office staffs are following up with those families with individual phone calls. More info on student selection can be found here. Most families will not receive an email or call - only the first 8 (PK3), 10 (PK4), or 11 (K-5) on the list will be contacted.

Community Questions and Answers: We posted these earlier in the week to our website. If you'd like to submit more questions, please use the form on the Questions and Answers document.

Overall updates can be found on this part of our website. Next week we plan to release our Term 2 Virtual Schedule (small tweaks to the current schedule) and we plan to schedule Peabody and Watkins LSAT and WTU visits to tour Watkins. You can keep up to date on the great progress of our Operations Team on our Instagram page. Shout out to our amazing Custodial Teams who are working so hard to prepare our building.

Chancellor Ferebee also sent details to the DCPS community Thursday evening.



Launch of ASPEN Parent Portal for K-5 Students

This fall, DCPS is launching the Parent Portal feature in Aspen.  The purpose of this feature is to establish open communication between teachers and families, allowing for each to work together in supporting student’s learning.  The Portal will also allow for parents/ guardians to view student attendance and receive published report cards starting with Term 1.  Parents who do not sign up for the portal will receive printed report cards in the mail in mid- to late-November.

This week, the Operations team will continue collecting accurate email addresses from parents and adding or updating them in ASPEN.  During the first week of November, parents/ guardians will receive an email from Aspen welcoming them to the Parent Portal along with user guides and video links to complete the next steps and access their account. Next Steps for Parent/ Guardians by Friday Oct. 23:

Immunizations and Required Health Forms

All students must be up to date on their immunizations before returning to in person learning. Follow these three steps to guarantee that your child is ready and see the below flier for more information:

  • Schedule your child's annual wellness visit

  • Make sure your child has received all of their immunizations

  • Submit immunization documents to your child's enrollment/ attendance team

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

  • Lots of fun events are coming up!

Race, Class, and Equity Group

Local School Advisory Team (LSAT)

Cluster Calendar

Cluster Virtual Book Fair with East City Bookshop

From Oct 26th through November 1, Cluster families, friends and staff can purchase books and merchandise online, via email, over the phone in the store during business hours and the Cluster will receive 20% of the proceeds. Links to order will be coming soon and sent.

236 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All