For Immediate Release
June 16, 2014
Contact: Dionne Johnson Calhoun
Grosso's Statement on Latest School Boundaries Proposal
On Thursday, June 12, the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Education released an updated draft proposal on student assignment policies, DCPS school boundaries, and feeder patterns. After reviewing the proposal, Councilmember David Grosso (I-At Large) released the following statement:
"It is clear from the school boundary proposal released last week that the Deputy Mayor's office and the Advisory Committee heard and responded to the significant amount of community input they've received over the last few months. I am supportive of the direction this proposal is headed. It maintains a core system of neighborhood schools, while also preserving the opportunity for school choice. I am also pleased that diversity in student enrollment was kept as a top principle reflected in the Advisory Committee's decision to prioritize access to early childhood programs for at-risk students, and recommending "set asides" for out-of-boundary students in zoned elementary, middle, and high schools.
While I understand the concerns of some communities impacted by changing boundary lines or feeder patterns, it is my hope that the Advisory Committee's proposed grandfathering provisions will limit any abrupt changes for students and families. Unfortunately, revisions to the DCPS school boundaries are timely and cannot wait.
Though this proposal moves the conversation forward, I am disappointed that it did not include any discussion or recommendations regarding the need for proactive planning, collaboration, and coordination between DCPS and the D.C. Public Charter School Board when it comes to opening new charter schools in the District. If our goal is to have citywide student assignment policies that are coherent and efficient, charter schools must be a part of the conversation. I will continue to push for that.
Although the D.C. Council does not have a vote on student assignment policies or the school boundary proposal, we will ultimately have to work with the Executive to implement any plan that is approved. That includes the construction and re-opening of perhaps four middle schools and to work with WMATA to provide free Metrorail services for our high school-aged students. I am committed to working with my colleagues and the Executive to find the appropriate path forward.
I look forward to hearing more community discussions and feedback on what has been released and I encourage everyone to engage in the conversation in the coming weeks. I appreciate that the Deputy Mayor's office has taken the helm for this process and appreciate all of the members of the Advisory Committee who have volunteered to do this hard work."
To get more information and share your feedback on these proposed changes, you are invited to:
- Attend a community meeting
- June 16, 6 - 8 pm, Savoy Elementary School, 2400 Shannon Place, SE
- June 17, 6 - 8 pm, Dunbar High School, 101 N Street, NW
- June 19, 6 - 8 pm, Takoma Education Campus, 7010 Piney Branch Road, NW
- Provide testimony at Council of the District of Columbia public oversight roundtable on school boundaries on June 26, 2014 at 9AM. Call 202-724-8000 or e-mail email@example.com to sign up.
- Email your concerns and questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 202-478-5738.