CHPSPO Meeting Notes – December 15, 2015

CHPSPO Meeting Notes

Brent Elementary

December 15, 2015

 

1) 3-8th grade PARCC results presentation by Bonnie O’Keefe OSSE

  • Reviewed PARCC Results and handed out one-page guides to the new assessment –> PARCC one pager.
  • New student reports have been designed for DC – mockups and a parent guide are available on the OSSE website in 6 different languages. Schools will get the individual student test results this week. Each school has the option for when and how to distribute those scores to parents. Parents will receive a copy of the parent guide with their child’s report card.
  • PARCC v DC CAS comparison: DC CAS had composition and reading test, PARCC has only one English Language Arts (ELA) test. General level of rigor is much higher on the PARCC assessment.
  • Because this is the first year of PARCC, there were no new identifications to put schools into focus or priority status (i.e. not meeting their goals). However, if schools already in focus or priority status made progress on certain criteria on the 2015 test, they can be removed from that status.
  • The new Every Student Succeed Act (ESSA) – the rewrite of the No Child Left Behind Law and the law that will supersede current state waivers – will change state accountability systems. There is more flexibility for states, but some of the rules have changed to in what is required for states in their accountability systems. For example, how OSSE will use test scores will change. But the use of PARCC as the test and the use of the new report cards will not change. Under the new law, OSSE will have 18 months to finalize a new plan with the U.S. Department of Education.
  • Joe Weedon: The State Board of Education will have to approve the OSSE plan and there will be public hearings on what the new accountability plan throughout the Spring and Summer of 2016. The Board is particularly interested in equitable access issues and competency based education.
  • PARCC defines college and career readiness as the 70% likelihood a student would earn credit in an entry level college course (scoring a level 4 or 5 in PARCC).

2) DCPS Budget 101 Presentation (Laura Marks and Anne Phelps from Councilman Allen’s office and Joe Weedon from SBOE)

  • Overview of Budget Process
    • Capital budget and operating budget are the two big pots of funding. You can’t transfer money between them. School modernizations are in the capital budget. Everything in the school walls comes from the operating budget.
    • Budget is about $12 billion per year for the city (federal, private and local funding). Of that, $7 billion is from local funds that can be moved around. 27% of those funds are dedicated for education – the highest percentage of the local budget.
  • Current 2016 DCPS Budget (compared to 2015)
    • No increase in uniform per-pupil funding formula.
    • Capital budget reduced by $330 million over 5 years out of the education sector; Ward 6 school modernizations cut $125 million (though they agree to the current year plus 5 years out when they do capital budgets, they can reassess and change them each year). Overall, the DC 6-year capital plan is $1.3 billion.
    • “At-Risk” Funds are being distributed on need. The original intent is for those funds to follow the at-risk students, but that hasn’t happened in past. This budget makes the effort to get the funds into the schools that qualify. Councilman Allen and others are now interested in knowing whether the funds are being used to supplement not supplant funds in individual schools. Council will continue to look into that through oversight.
    • Extended Day funding is increased, aftercare funding reduced. Councilman Allen is interested in learning more about the effects extended day has on aftercare offerings and how effectively the extended day funding is being used at schools.
  • FY2017 Budget Process has Kicked Off
    • November – normally the Chancellor outlines her priorities, but this year we are still waiting to hear what DCPS will identify as their big funding priorities
    • Now: Parent and community survey online – place to weigh in on budget priorities (November-December) engagedcps.org
    • November: DCPS held citywide LSAT planning and training meetings (three done)
    • Now: Chancellor team in process of identifying school enrollment targets and a modernization plan
    • Feb-March: School, LSAT and DCPS work to finalize school budgets
    • In the first 2 weeks of March, DCPS has to wrap up the back and forth with the schools to submit to Mayor’s budget team
    • Date to submit Mayor’s proposed budget to Council is March 24th.
  • Council Role
    • Once the Mayor submits the budget to Council, Council has 56 days (by law in the Home Rule Act) to hold hearings, develop priorities, develop a committee chairman’s budget, then the full committee amend and vote on the committee budget
    • Performance oversight hearings: February 4 – March 11, 2016
    • Budget oversight hearings: April 6-28, 2016
    • May 4 and 5 committee budgets go to the committee of a whole to reconcile all the budgets
    • May 17th there is a reconciliation vote – vote on the entire budget package
    • In the Operating Budget, Council cannot amend the DCPS operating budget easily or at all because even if they have a directive put in to change the operating budget, the Chancellor can reprogram that money. DCPS is a unique circumstance. For example, in the library budget, Council can direct more of the funds. But Council can move around priorities in the Capital budget.

What can parents do:

  • Advocates: Now is the time to focus on advocating at the school level for the right operating budget for the school – with the Principal, LSAT, and parents – to work with DCPS to achieve priorities. For issues across schools, need to advocate with the Mayor and Chancellor on city-wide programmatic funds.
  • Advocates: On Capital side of the budget there is less ability to manipulate the budget than before, but still some ability. But there needs to be coordinated prioritization particularly in Ward 6.
  • Now is the time to start pushing priorities.
  • Two big asks could be: more money in school modernization/capital budget overall, and increases in the per pupil funding formula.
  • DCPS does not fund schools on a per student basis. They fund on a staffing model (see below).
  • Operating Budget Issues – Where can we influence DCPS funding?
    • Key is enrollment projections. If 300, 350, 400 there are different staffing models.
    • Still elements of the budget where the principal and LSAT can advocate within the DCPS process.
    • LSAT has a “School Budget Development Guide” put out by DCPS that can be a tool to help. It often lays out elements that DCPS is changing in terms of priorities and what is changing in terms of school and district funding and thresholds. The FY17 version is not yet available of this guide. Parents need to ask principals for this guide. They may need to ask DCPS for it.

What can parents and advocates do?

  • Ask your principal: what is the projected enrollment number from DCPS (now is when they are asking for adjustments). By Dec 18th the enrollment numbers will be final.
  • Ask principal/LSAT for the latest “School Budget Development Guide” and read and understand the parameters for how DCPS will build the draft school budgets this year.
  • Work with principal and LSAT – now – to align school budget to community priorities. Discuss what trade-offs have to be made and how collectively the community can work on priorities.

3) CHPSPO School Modernization Advocacy

  • CHPSPO feels we need more priority on the school modernization budget overall – arguing that overall and Ward 6 need more funding for the capital budget. Funds should be restored and increased overall.
  • CHPSPO will start working with the Deputy Mayor and Mayor and make an effort to increase the capital school budget overall and for Ward 6 in particular.

Next CHPSPO Meeting:  January 19, 2016

Upcoming Events  (inclement weather may impact schedules – please confirm open house dates w/ individual schools -see http://www.myschooldc.org/calendar/ )

January 5 – Amidon-Bowen Open House, 9:30-10:30 am

January 7 – Ludlow-Taylor Open House, 9:30-10:30 am

January 8 – Jefferson Academy Open House, 9:30-11:00 am

January 11 – Maury ES Open House, 9:00-10:30 am

January 11 – Brent ES Open House, 9:00-10:30 am

January 11 – Capitol Hill Montessori at Logan EC Open House, 6:00-7:00 pm

January 11 – Maury ES Open House, 6:15-7:45 pm

January 14 – J.O. Wilson ES Open House, 9:30-11:00 am

January 14 – Miner ES Open House, 9:30-10:30 am

January 14 – Eastern HS Open House, 5:30-7:00 pm

January 14 – Jefferson Academy MS Open House, 6:00-7:00 pm

January 14 – School Within a School @ Goding Open House, 6:00-7:30 pm

January 15 – Tyler ES Open House, 6:00-7:00 pm

January 19 – Walker-Jones EC Open House, 9:00-10:30 am

January 19 – Tyler ES Open House, 9:30-10:30 am

January 21 – J.O. Wilson Summer Camp Fair, 6 – 8 pm

Status

Letter to the Editor by CHPSPO founder, Suzanne Wells: Put controls in place regarding the approval of new D.C. public charters

The following letter to the editor, Put controls in place regarding the approval of new D.C. public charters, appeared online in the Washington Post on March 27, 2015.


In the March 22 Local Opinions commentary “Why charters need traditional schools,” the executive director and the former chairman of the D.C. Public Charter School Board claimed, “We believe that the balance we have, with a thriving public charter sector and strong traditional schools, is about right.” It is unclear what they believe should happen now that “the balance . . . is about right.”

It seems clear that the charter board won’t stop approving new schools. It has approved an average of six a year. The District has 112 public charter schools, and three will open this fall. One, Washington Global Middle School, will open about a third of a mile from Jefferson Middle School and offer a substantially similar program. In May, the board will vote on whether to open six more schools in 2016. The balance won’t be “about right” for long.

Parents and public education supporters have been advocating for joint planning by D.C. Public Schools and the D.C. Public Charter School Board before charter schools are opened. Many believe we are spreading our education dollars too thin by opening charter schools that duplicate the services found in existing schools.

It is up to the D.C. Council and the mayor to require comprehensive planning before District taxpayers are asked to fund the opening of public charter schools.

— Suzanne Wells, Washington

Public Hearing for DC Schools FY16 Budget – Testimony by Suzanne Wells, CHPSPO

The following testimony was prepared by Suzanne Wells of CHPSPO. on March 16, 2015 at the Fiscal Year 2016 Budget for Public Schools in the District of Columbia organized by the Executive Office of the Mayor.

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Fiscal Year 2016 Budget for Public Schools in the District of Columbia

Suzanne Wells

Capitol Hill Public Schools Parent Organization

March 16, 2016
Columbia Heights Education Campus
3101 16th St., NW

Thank you for the opportunity to provide my views on the FY16 funding for public schools in the District of Columbia.  This is an important hearing because important education policy decisions are made when our city makes decisions on how it allocates funding for education.

The Washington Post reported last Friday, March 13, on the DCPS plans for allocating its FY16 budget.  Overall, there are many good things in the budget.  Kaya Henderson has called next school year “the year of the high school.”  The extra investment in high schools is expected to provide more Advanced Placement courses, and more electives for students.  We support this much needed investment in high schools.

However, we must caution that the work on our middle schools is far from being done.  Middle schools across the city provide the bridge between our elementary and high schools.  DCPS has faced a persistent problem in retaining students after elementary school.  While there have been investments in past years in our middle schools, and modest gains in improvement, continued investments are needed.  Support similar to what is being provided next year for high schools is also needed at the middle school level in order for them to thrive.

We support DCPS’s plans to begin providing a per student funding formula for library collection development.  While we have not been able to closely examine the local school budgets, because neither those budgets nor any substantive budget guidance was made public even as of 2 pm today, we caution that the funding for library collection development should be a real increase to the local school budget, and should not come at the expense of other important items in the local school budget.

Because this hearing is on the funding for public schools, both the schools DCPS manages and the public charter schools, we must raise to you our deep concerns about the lack of comprehensive planning between DCPS and the Public Charter School Board PCSB) when new charter schools are opened.  I will use the remainder of my testimony to explain why this lack of planning should be of concern to both you and the taxpayers of the District of Columbia.

Last week, we learned a new charter middle school, Washington Global, has leased a building in Ward 6 that is less than 1,700 feet from Jefferson Middle School in order to start its International Middle Years Curriculum program. In Washington Global’s own charter school application, they targeted Wards 4, 5, 7 and 8 for locating their new school based on their own analysis of need.  In Ward 6, we have three middle schools, Stuart Hobson, Eliot-Hine and Jefferson along with Capitol Hill Montessori@Logan which is a city-wide school that DCPS expanded to go through middle school.  Stuart Hobson is at capacity, but both Eliot-Hine and Jefferson are under enrolled.  Both Eliot-Hine and Jefferson have been steadily improving.  Eliot-Hine is expected to become certified as an International Baccalaureate Middle Years program for the coming school year, and Jefferson is shifting to a college prep program.  Washington Global’s program essentially duplicates the program being offered at Eliot-Hine, and is substantially similar to what is being offered at Jefferson.

With the opening of the new Washington Global, taxpayers will now be paying for a new charter middle school when it essentially duplicates what is being offered at other middle schools in the city.  Taxpayers will be paying for the opening of a new charter middle school when we know that we have existing under enrolled middle schools.  Taxpayers will be paying for Washington Global to renovate the building they have leased while both Eliot-Hine and Jefferson will continue to wait for their Phase 1 modernizations that the taxpayers will eventually be asked to fund.

Because there is no planning between DCPS and the Public Charter School Board, our educational dollars are being spread thin.  Because there is no planning, our educational dollars are not being strategically used to support students.  The taxpayers, parents and students cannot fix the “no planning” problem.  It is up to the Mayor, the Deputy Mayor for Education, the DC Council, DCPS and the PCSB to fix the “no planning” problem, and we urge you to make this your highest priority.

Public Hearing for DC Schools FY16 Budget – Testimony by Cathy Reilly, S.H.A.P.P.E.

The following testimony was delivered by Cathy Reilly of S.H.A.P.P.E. on March 16, 2015 at the Fiscal Year 2016 Budget for Public Schools in the District of Columbia organized by the Executive Office of the Mayor.

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S.H.A.P.P.E.

Senior High Alliance of Parents, Principals and Educators

Thank you for this opportunity to testify.  The Senior High Alliance has been advocating for high school students for the last 17 years.

By most reports the 2016 budgets for the DCPS high schools will boost elective choices and opportunities for these young people.  It has the potential to match the capital investment the city has made in the DCPS High schools with a program investment.  If this is maintained it will make a huge difference in our ability to provide the families of Washington DC with something they overwhelmingly asked for – a strong DCPS system of feeder schools of right in every ward of the city.  Thank you.  I am looking forward to seeing the budgets and learning what schools are able to do with the funds.

The work in realizing the vision of a predictable and strong set of schools in each of the 9 feeder patterns is not yet done however.  The crucial elements remaining are:

  • Meeting the demand for the pre-school seats by expanding and providing by right access in wards of the city serving at risk and title one students. This will strengthen the whole feeder pattern.
  • While the middle grades bump in funding has helped, most of the K-8 middle grades programs cannot compete with a school with the options Alice Deal offers. We need the 4 middle schools recommended in the Student Assignment recommendations to provide a seamless route. One in Ward 7, two in Ward 4 and one to feed into Cardozo.
  • Required planning with the charter sector to support the vision endorsed after an expansive public engagement process as part of the Student Assignment process. A core system of high quality neighborhood schools of right complemented by a set of high quality public school options.  We cannot do this with an unlimited number of schools.  We have to have a planning process across the sectors.  One that looks at location and need.   Need is not defined by where there are schools that have or do not have students scoring proficient.  We can do better than a pure market model in sustaining our public infrastructure and supporting our public institutions.

We would like to also work with you Chancellor Henderson and with Dr. Simmons on universal and institutional support for all of young people who are struggling.  I think the launching of a “Black Girls Matter” conference and some of the feedback from some students east of the river regarding the proposed small YMOC high school should have a space to really be heard and considered.    We would like to work with you on making that happen.

We welcome the Burdick school coming back into DCPS and hope that there will be work on a model that makes it easy for schools under many different circumstances to be part of DCPS.

Thank you

Public Hearing with Mayor, DME, OSSE: FY 2016 Budget for Public Schools in the District of Columbia

EXECUTIVE OFFICE OF THE MAYOR

NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING

Fiscal Year 2016 Budget for Public Schools in the District of Columbia

Monday March 16, 2016
6:00 pm – 7:30pm
Columbia Heights Education Campus
3101 16th St., NW

Washington, DC 20010

Mayor Muriel Bowser, Deputy Mayor for Education, Jennifer Nile, and Acting State Superintendent of Education, Amy Maisterra, will hold a public hearing on the Fiscal Year 2016 budget for public schools. The hearing will be held on Monday, March 16, 2015 from 6:00 pm to 7:30pm at Columbia Heights Education Campus, 3103 16th St., NW, Washington, DC 20010.

The purpose of the hearing is to solicit the views of the public on levels of public funding to be sought in the FY 2016 operating budget for public schools in the District of Columbia, pursuant to the District of Columbia Official Code § 38-917.

Members of the public are invited to testify. Testimony is limited to three minutes per witness and five minutes per organization or group. Those wishing to testify should contact Tara Lynch in the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Education via email at tara.lynch@dc.gov or by telephone at (202) 727-3636 by 4 pm on Thursday, March 12, 2015. Witnesses should bring three (3) copies of their written testimony to the hearing.

Members of the public may submit written testimony, which will be made part of the official record. Copies of written statements should be submitted to the contact listed above no later than 4 pm on Thursday, March 12, 2015.

If members of the public need interpretation services, please contact Mrs. Lynch to arrange services for the hearing.

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DC Council Committee on Education – Oversight Hearings on FY 2014-15

COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION

Oversight Hearings on Fiscal Year 2014-2015

The Committee on Education (http://dccouncil.us/committees/committee-on-education) will conduct Performance Oversight Hearings; the following agencies will testify:

Wednesday, 2/18/2015, 10:00am, Room 123

  • Public Charter School Board
  • Bullying Prevention Taskforce
  • Healthy Youth and Schools Commission

Thursday, 2/19/2015, 10:00am, Room 412

  • District of Columbia Public Schools (Public Witnesses Only)

Tuesday, 2/24/2015, 10:00am, Room 500

  • District of Columbia Public Schools (Government Witnesses Only)

Thursday, 3/5/2015, 10:00am, Room 412

  • Office of the State Superintendent of Education
  • State Board of Education

Tuesday, 3/10/2015, 10:00am, Room 123

  • Deputy Mayor for Education
  • District of Columbia Public Library System

Persons wishing to testify about the performance of any of the foregoing agencies may contact: Christina Henderson, chenderson@dccouncil.us, or by calling 202-724-8191.

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Thank you to CM Charles Allen’s staff for helping us to keep track of these.