Bulletin-01-23-2017 - Columbia Heights Educational Campus

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Thank you to all for administering the interim assessments last week. Some celebrations are in order: 6th Grade ELA had great gains in Standard RL 6.3 from 15% proficient to 62% proficient!

7th grade ELA:
  • The strongest standard was RL 7.4 at 42% ("determining the meaning of words and phrases"), which Mr. Cisneros and Mr. Rahman consistently work on with their daily and weekly "Word Work" assignments
  • Another strength was RL 7.3 at 40% ("analyzing the interaction between individuals"), which was the foundation of their work with the Bronx Masquerade GRASPS and the character trackers they worked on throughout the unit

7th grade Math:
  • The strongest standard was 7.NS.A.2d at 29% ("terminating and repeating decimals"), which was a significant improvement over short-cycle data

8th grade ELA:
  • The strongest standard was RI 8.4 at 49% ("determining the meaning of words and phrases")
  • Other strengths were RI 8.2 at 32% ("determining central idea of a text") and RI 8.5 at 36% ("analyzing the structure of a specific paragraph in a text"), which were covered just prior to Anet in the Apple vs. FBI mini-unit

8th grade Math:
  • 9 students scored 88% or higher on Interim 2, which was made up entirely of PARCC-released questions

11th grade AP English
  • Congratulations to the AP English 11 team for their growth in "Rhetorical Devices" during the Interim in which the team averaged a 37%. The team grew from 5% on Short Cycle 1 to 37% by the Interim in Rhetorical Devices.
  • Congratulations to Mr. Khafra on the AP English 11 team for 51% of his students exceeding mastery or reaching mastery during the AP Interim in the area of Rhetorical Devices.

This week and next, we will complete and grade tests, and compare the achievement to our predictions.  We will once again do a deep dive into the data, looking for trends, what students misunderstood,  and hypothesize why.  We will then develop another six week plan, identifying reteach standards along with new standards aligned to the next interim (March 9 and 10)  and developing new ways to teach the standards that need strengthening.  We are now 11 instructional  weeks from PARCC, and 12 instructional weeks from Advanced Placement, so strategic use of time and focus on standards are key.

This Friday, January 27, will be Data Day for students, when we share the results with students and engage them in setting goals.

Thank you again for all of your hard work on our Data Driven Cycle of assessment!


Thank you to all teachers and staff for great portfolio presentations last week.  We had over 230 parents attend, twice as much as first advisory!  We will now announce the teachers with the highest parent attendance, as well as the SLC’s.  The winning teachers will receive a gift card, and the winning SLC will receive a SLC free Monday this coming week, as well as the Golden Portfolio Trophy!

  • Middle School Teacher – Shuk Kuen Chiu -20 parents
  • Middle School SLC – 6th Grade – 64 parents attended Administrator Resheeda Hinkson
  • High School Teachers – Lakshmi Peddyreddy and Pete Magee (a tie with 12 parents each!)
  • High School SLC – MSB – 73 parents- Administrator Adrian Thweatt

Congratulations to our Portfolio Stars!  Let’s strive for even higher involvement in March!!!
January 23 - January 27, 2017

Focus on Instruction
Leadership Team and Other Updates
Shout Outs
Opportunities and Updates
Ambiente, creating a climate for learning
Sports - Griffins Update!
Thought for the Week
Weekly Calendar
Upcoming Events and Activities

Both middle basketball teams lost Walker Jones and the middle school boys team defeated Wheatley.  The high school boys basketball teams lost to Cardozo and Anacostia.  The high school girl’s basketball team defeated Cardozo and lost to Anacostia.    

Girls Basketball  0 – 2
Boys Basketball 3 – 2

Junior Varsity Basketball 0 – 8
Varsity Girls Basketball 8 – 5
Varsity Boys Basketball 3 – 8

No Games

JVB vs. Wilson at Wilson @ 4:00
MSGB vs. Brightwood at
Wheatley @ 4:45
MSBB vs. Brightwood at
Wheatley @ 6:00
VGB vs. Wilson at Wilson @ 6:00
VBB vs. Wilson at Wilson @ 8:00

No Games

No Games

No Games

No Games
SLC Morning Meeting

SLC Morning Meeting

Department Meeting

Department Meeting

No Meetings


Submitted by Kaitlin Settle Athmer


For every $50 CHEC raises, we can send a student, teacher, or staff member to jump into the ice-cold water on February 3rd, 2017! (10am-1pm)  Please consider donating any amount to our school's fund, taking the plunge yourself, recruiting and sponsoring a student to plunge in your place, or coming along for encouragement or pure entertainment!  Go to our team page (CHEC Griffins and Knights) to donate, and share the link with friends! *There's also a public plunge on Saturday, February 11th at Nationals Park if you can't attend during school hours!

*Contact Kaitlin Settle Athmer in A212 x5105 kaitlin.settle@dc.gov for more information!​


Teachers are needed to work in our Middle School extended day program. The support areas are ELA, Math, and Spanish. The hours are 3:30 - 4:30, Monday through Thursday. Teachers will be compensated for their time. If you are interested or have questions about the program, please contact Ms. Pugh.

Wendy Pugh

2017 is the year of the Rooster by the Chinese calendar. Chinese New Year celebrations begin January 28 through February 24, 2017.

Fun, friends, and food are what all new year celebrations are about.  During the week of February 20th, during the lunch periods, we will host various Chinese New Year activities for the students.  Activities will include a traditional Chinese clothing fashion show, Dragon dance, and Fan dance to name a few.  For more information please see either Ms. Wei Wei or Ms. Pugh

by Libby, Global Kids

Pulitzer Crisis Reporting will be bringing photographer Dominic Bracco to the Global Kids meeting in the MS Library from 3:30-4:30. Please encourage all students to attend- perhaps learning about this topic or know that they are not alone in their experiences! Dominic will give the talk in English and Spanish. Dominic Bracco, Youth and Violence on the Border of the US and Mexico Photographer Dominic Bracco II explores the effects of global economics on local communities through writing, filmmaking and photography. He will speak to the experiences of youth in Honduras, Mexico and Texas who are navigating corruption, drug activity and violence in their communities.

CHEC Will Host Women and Girls of Color Initiative Listening Session

DCPS is excited to begin the planning process for a Women / Girls of Color initiative.  As DCPS embarks on this work we want to hear directly from DCPS staff and students at CHEC about what we can do to better serve and support our young women of color. Your input will help shape the work moving  forward! Please encourage your female students to attend and please plan to attend as well. The listening session at CHEC will be:

Time: 3:00-4:00
Location:  CHEC  MS Cafeteria

All women and girls are welcome! Pizza will be served!!!

DeMario Hardmon Fort

Starting in the new advisory, members of the CHEC Bellmen group will take a dedicated course where they w ill learn about their history and complete projects based on implications for making a better future for their communities. EMOC has worked to incorporate this class into the normal school day schedule, for the benefit of our young men. The class will be lead by Mr. Reginald Williams.

CHEC EMOC is partnering with Guerrilla Arts, Inc., a local nonprofit organization that brings artists from the DC region into schools to teach literacy through the arts. CHEC Bellmen can attend after school sessions featuring mural painting, mixed metals, and music production, among others to learn about the expressing themselves to the world, while building reading skills. They will present products of their learning later in the semester. EMOC has also partnered with the Cabel Foundation, another local nonprofit that bring financial literacy education to the community. Lead by CEO and founder, Mr. Ervin Owen, Bellmen will have access to an 8 week course in financial development. Please encourage any Bellmen you know to take full advantage of these opportunities. Your support and knowledge of their opportunities is valuable reinforcement.

Submitted by Angela Martinez and Angela Falkenberg

CHEC Libraries
It is our pleasure to let you all know that approximately 40 of our CHEC students will be traveling to the Library of Congress on February 2nd to participate in a Q&A session with Dr. Carla Hayden, Librarian of Congress.  The visit is part of the Black History Makers program.  If you have a student you would like for us to include in the trip, please email Angela Martinez or Angela Falkenberg with the students’ name. Please note that the Bell Library will be closed to students for the week due to Senior Portfolio Presentations.  Bell students can use the library before or after school, however they are NOT permitted to use the middle school library at any time.

Canvas Update
Congratulations to all the teachers who have been using Canvas organize and differentiate their classes, as well as simplify their own teaching.  With features such as mixed-media submissions, speed grader, and online discussions Canvas is a great way to make sure students can efficiently interact with classes. One highlight of Canvas use can be found in Ms. Erwana Tamdem’s French class.  Last semester Ms. Tamdem used the library iPads to have students create iMovie presentations about their favorite foods.  In the presentations the students practiced their speaking and writing skills by writing and reading scripts that describe their favorite foods in French.  After creating and perfecting their iMovies, students uploaded their projects to Canvas to be viewed and graded by Ms. Tamdem.  

If you are interested in doing a similar project or want to learn more about how Canvas can be used in your classes, please email Angela Martinez (angela.martinez@dc.gov).


  • Shout out to Ms. Blair for stem night last week! The STEM students presented their projects, and many parents attended this very inspirational event!!!
  • Shout out to Ms. Kamal and Ms. Thorpe for a great Capstone night! the projects were stimulating, and many parents came!!
  • Shout out to all who attended the Women’s March on Saturday!!!


The Leadership Team will continue to meet every other Wednesday this year, and the Academic Leadership Team (ALT) will meet every other Wednesday. The ALT met last Wednesday, January 18, and our next ALT/Leadership Team meeting will be Wednesday, January 26, 2017. At this meeting, we will continue and complete mapping out LEAP seminars and department meeting agendas for the next advisory. The notes and minutes from all meetings are available on the CHEC Portal. The Academic Leadership Team is a group of teachers, counselors, and administrators who meet every other week to discuss school needs, and plan for improvements. The Leadership Team designs the school’s comprehensive school plan, and helps in its implementation.  Please consider joining the Leadership Team this year. It is open to all faculty and staff. We need the involvement and voices of all. Remember, Leadership team meetings are open to all who are interested in schoolwide decision-making and leadership. You can come once, or as many times as you like, but please make your voice heard!
Submitted by Suzannah Weiss


Fifteen 30-Day Challenge Ideas That Will Change Your Life [Excerpt]
by Christina Tiplea

I’ve been a big fan of 30-Day challenges and the positive impact that they can make on your life. It’s said that 30 days is enough time to solidify a new habit that you want to incorporate into your daily routine, or even to subtract a habit that hasn’t been good for your health or well-being.

Matt Cutts did a Ted Talk on this very subject that is totally worth the 3 minutes to watch and gain some inspiration from! There are so many ways that 30-day challenges can make a huge difference in your life, which include:

  • Gaining more self confidence
  • Feeling empowered
  • Achieving your dreams
  • Becoming healthier
  • Being more adventurous
  • Finding happiness ….amongst many other benefits!

The best part of 30-day challenges is that making small changes one at a time (aka focusing on only that one challenge over the course of 30 days), is much more sustainable over the long-term that trying to overhaul all of your habits and routines at once. In the spirit of wanting to provide a little inspiration to you to try a 30-day challenge of your own, I thought I would compile a list of 30-day challenge ideas that you might like to try for yourself. Now, the key is to remember that this list is just full of suggestions, so maybe you will choose one challenge to take on….or maybe you will feel so inspired that you’ll want to try twelve different challenges over the course of the next year. It’s totally up to you! The important thing is that you carve time out of your schedule every single day over the course of 30 days to devote to whatever challenge you choose.

Fifteen 30-Day Challenge Ideas that will change your life:

  1. Quit a bad habit that bothers you - Maybe you bite your nails, smoke, or have a tendency to devour a pint of ice cream every night. If you have a daily habit that bothers you and is something you have wanted to stop doing for a while now, this is your chance to make a change and phase this habit out of your life. You can quit anything for only 30 days!
  2. Get outside - If you find yourself spending most of your days cooped up inside looking at a computer screen and want to experience more fresh air, then making a point to get outside every day might be a great challenge for you!
  3. Become a morning person - Mornings can be rough. As a former night owl…, I can honestly say that life is a lot better when you start your day on the right note.
  4. Start up a side business doing what you love - Creating a side business of your own that you love and are passionate about can bring so much joy into your life! Maybe you’ve had dreams to sell your homemade crafts, run a freelance business, or even start a blog of your own. Take the next 30 days and spend an hour every day dedicated to getting your new side business up and running, and finally make your dream a reality!
  5. Give up TV or social media - While it can be fun to indulge in TV or time spent on social media, it can also be easy to allow ourselves to become addicted to it. If you struggle with how much time you spend watching TV or engaging on social media and think it’s having a negative affect on your happiness, try going without it at all for 30 days and see if it makes a positive impact on your energy and overall state of mind!
  6. Keep a gratitude journal - Life is never going to be perfect, so it can be easy to feel like a bad day means we have a bad life. I know I certainly am guilty of forgetting all of my blessings when things start to go a bit awry. Something that really helps to combat this is to keep a gratitude journal. Every night, challenge yourself to write down just three things you were grateful for that day or that put a smile on your face. At the end of your 30-day challenge, you’ll be left with a list of 90 things you were grateful for that month to look back on when life feels rough. What an amazing resource to have!
  7. Complete an act of kindness or give a compliment - Putting a smile on someone else’s face is always a guaranteed way to put a smile on your face too! Spend 30 days either completing one random act of kindness or giving a compliment to someone every single day and see if making others happy makes you happier too.
  8. Set aside time to devote to your favorite hobby - Too often we fail to make time for the things we most love to do. If you have a hobby that you tend to not always make the time for, try carving a few minutes out of your day for 30 days straight to spend on it. Spending time doing things we love and working on our passions is a surefire way to be happier and feel more fulfilled!
  9. Exercise for 30 minutes - Have you been trying to make exercise a regular habit for years now? Use this challenge as your muse to finally get on board with that habit! Try adding in just 30 minutes of exercise to your day. Make you feel better about yourself.
  10. Read a book just for fun - When is the last time you read a book just for fun? Not because you had to, but just for the sake of enjoying a good book? It can be difficult to carve time out of your day to cozy up with a good book and let yourself get lost in it, but it always feels so amazing when you do! It’s good to let your mind wander and just enjoy a good story or even learn something new. Try reading one chapter of a book every night before bed for the next 30 days and see if it helps you feel more relaxed and maybe even inspires you!
  11. Kick negative thoughts to the curb - Negative thoughts happen to all of us. Sometimes when things are going wrong, it can be difficult to find even one good thing about the situation at hand. Challenge yourself for the next 30 days to see if you can try to find the positive in every single situation you encounter. When negative thoughts start to creep in, try to instead replace them with positive ones. You might be surprised at the end of your challenge to see that you’ve permanently changed your overall mindset and attitude!
  12. Give up sweets or caffeine - If you are a huge caffeine addict or dessert lover (I’m guilty!), it might be interesting to challenge yourself and see if you can go an entire 30 days without consuming your favorite guilty pleasure.Perhaps at the end of 30 days you will still want to have your usual morning coffee or the occasional sweet treat, but maybe you will find yourself cutting back to an amount that you’re more comfortable with and can feel good about!
  13. Don’t buy anything new - If you tend to find yourself purchasing items you don’t actually need on a regular basis, try going for 30 days without purchasing anything new. Obviously you will still need to pay for groceries, gas, bills, etc., but try to go without purchasing things like clothing, gadgets, decor, and other “fun” items. See if taking on this challenge opens your eyes to your spending and consumption habits and if you find yourself enjoying new hobbies other than shopping!
  14. Donate or toss one item every day - If you’ve been feeling overwhelmed by the amount of clutter and general stuff in your home lately, use this opportunity to ease into the process of decluttering and freeing up space. Try donating, tossing, or selling just one item a day for 30 days in a row. While this might not sound like it will make a huge impact to get rid of one thing at a time, just think about how at the end of the challenge, your home will be 30 items lighter than it was before you started. Small changes have the potential to make a big impact, especially when it comes to decluttering!
  15. Only use your smart phone for actual phone calls - With smart phones being so prevalent these days, it’s really easy to allow ourselves to get sucked into constantly texting, surfing the internet, and playing games on our phones. Spending more time looking at our phones to engage in these activities can cause us to lose sight of what’s actually happening around us in “real life”.

Try spending a whole 30 days only using your phone for actual phone calls – no texting, no email, no internet, and no apps. See if making this change allows you to be more present and in the moment!
Are you ready to take on a 30-day challenge? Which challenge(s) appeals to you most, or do you have any other challenge ideas that you’d like to share with the rest of us? Leave a comment below!

CHEC is going to be starting a Model United Nations Club, through our partnership with the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.  If you are interested in working with this Club, please see Wendy Pugh, Mila Lopez or Maria Tukeva.


The Black Swan Academy is excited to announce our city wide Black History & Culture "I Have Pride" Writing Contest.   As the world reflects on the legacy of Dr. King, and prepares to celebrate Black History Month; we know that our youth have reason to celebrate their history and culture year-round. Pride, is one of three core values of The Black Swan Academy. We believe that youth should be proud about who they are and where they come from. This writing contest is meant to provide youth with the opportunity to explore the uniqueness of their own history and culture and reflect on the impact that it has had in their personal lives, as well as, the lives of others.

We are hoping you encourage your students to participate. The deadline is February 20th. Contestants will have the opportunity to win prizes, including up to a $500 and present their work at a showcase in March. The specific guidelines are in the following link: http://blackswanacademy.org/writingcontest/


We have started  the  new semester, and for most teachers, this means a new set of student. Please plan to build relationships with your new students, and to build relationships among students as well. Please draw upon the strategies our PGT shared at our last faculty meeting, as well as the Restorative Circles we have learned about. Remember our goal of consistency so that students experience consistent expectations and support. Please also remember our shift to Restorative Justice. Use CHAMPS and PBIS to support your classroom climate!  INVITE MS. CAMPBELL TO YOUR CLASS DOJO SO THAT SHE CAN HIGHLIGHT YOUR GREAT PBIS WORK. The Deans will be chairing the School Climate and Culture Team.  Please join to make your voice heard on the School Climate and Culture.


Please do not cover up the windows to your classroom or office doors. This should only be done in the event of an active shooter drill or event.  Other than that, it is a safety hazard to cover the windows.  Administrators will be checking on this periodically and asking maintenance to remove any windows that are covered.


This IS A REMINDER ABOUT THE Student of the Week Program. Any staff member can nominate a student, for academic or mission related accomplishments. Please send your nominations by email to M. Tukeva.

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