Bulletin-02-13-2017 - Columbia Heights Educational Campus

Go to content

Main menu:

ABOUT > CHEC Bulletin

Thank you, CHEC teachers, staff and faculty, for being responsive and dynamic educators during these tumultous times. The CHEC Pillars for curriculum and instruction have never been more important than they are today. Here in the Nation’s Capital, we are witnessing unprecedented challenges to the institutions of government, and to the values of a multicultural and global society. This turmoil affects those of us who live and work in the District of Columbia, even more than others,  as a jurisdiction without the rights of a state. Our CHEC Mission calls for developing “leaders in the quest for social justice”, and articulate communicators in two languages.” These words in our mission take on even more urgency now.

As an educational community, as we design curriculum and lessons, we have to sharpen our focus, our research, our precision, and our students’ skills of writing, thinking, problem solving, calculation, and organization. Now it is more important than ever to learn deeply about  the government structures and processes that can be utilized in so many ways, for good and for harm. Now it becomes more urgent to teach our students how to use mathematics as a tool to defend their rights and their future, to use language to make their voices heard, to critically analyze what they read and view, and to protect scientific thought and processes. We must develop our resilience, and that of our students, to work for social justice even as it is being assaulted by others.

It has been inspiring to see so many CHEC teachers modifying their GRASPS, and classroom discussions,  to make them relevant to current events, and promote critical analysis and activism.This is the artistry and mission of the educator. We use the tension of the challenges facing us, to create classes that unleash the curiousity, passion, and commitment of our students, while developing the self-discipline and focused teamwork  needed to overcome the barriers being built.

“Liberating education consists in acts of cognition, not transferals of information.”
― Paulo Freire

Submitted by Sarah Ermis

GLSEN is providing free 8x11 inclusivity posters to anyone who would like. All they need to do is sign up at the link below:

Dear undocumented students,
In this classroom, there are no walls.
You are loved.

Dear Black students,
Your life matters.
You are loved.

Dear Muslim students and
students of Middle Eastern descent,
You belong here.
You are loved.

Dear Latinx students,
You deserve respect. Your body is yours.
You are loved.

Dear female students,
You deserve respect. Your body is yours.
You are loved.

Dear LGBTQ students,
You do not to change.
You are loved.

Dear students with disabilities,
You are perfect just as you are.
You are loved.

Dear ALL students,
We will respect each other and learn from one another.
You are a beloved part of this country and community.

-- Inspired by a message from Senora Tarman, a teacher from California.    
www.glsen.org  GLSEN
February  13 - February 17, 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

Congratulations to Coach Edmonds and the middle school boys basketball team on making the championship. Unfortunately, the boys fell short of winning the championship, but they had a great season.  The bowling team defeated Roosevelt but lost to SWW.

The high school boys basketball team lost to Phelps. The high school girls basketball team defeated Phelps but lost to National Christian Academy.
Playoffs begin this week for the high school girls. Practice for spring sports also begins this week!

Girls Basketball  0 – 5
Boys Basketball 10 – 5

Junior Varsity Basketball 3 – 12
Varsity Girls Basketball 15 – 7
Varsity Boys Basketball 4 – 14
Bowling 1-1


No Games

No Games

Bowling vs. Anacostia at Bolling AFB @ 4:00

VGB vs. Coolidge at CHEC @ 5:00 (playoffs)

No Games

VGB playoffs continued at UDC @ 12:00
SLC Morning Meeting

SLC Morning Meeting

Department Meeting

Department Meeting

Professional Development Day




This is a friendly reminder that this Friday, February 17 is Professional Development Day. The Professional Development Catalog for the Friday, February 17 PD Day is available. Please review the catalog and register for your session on Sched by Wednesday, February 15. Registering for sessions ensures staff members receive credit for attendance, updates on locations, and any key reminders from session facilitators. Please be reminded that punctual attendance at these sessions is mandatory.

All staff members EXCEPT FOR ELA, MATH, AND DUAL LANGUAGE, will attend district-led PD sessions from 8:00 AM – 11:15 AM. The agenda for each session, unless otherwise stated in this catalog, is:
  • 8:00 AM – 8:15 AM: Arrival and Check-In at session room
  • 8:15 AM – 11:15 AM: District-Led D Session
Staff members will return to their schools from 11:15 AM – 12:30 PM with time embedded for a lunch break. School-led PD will take place from 12:30 PM – 3:30 PM.  

As a reminder, teachers and staff on Math and ELA LEAP teams will participate in an extended seminar session at their school led by their LEAP Leader from 8:15 AM – 11:15 AM on February 17. This opportunity is being provided based on the feedback from LEAP Leaders, as well as from principals and teachers, indicating that more time is needed at the school level to delve more deeply into the LEAP module content 8th Grade ELA teachers will attend Nuances of Debate: Teaching Cornerstone 3 The Art of Debate.
All other teachers and staff should report to their designated PD Day location specified in the PD Day Catalog.

  • Kudos to Dr. Baker Morales’ classes for their presentation in collaboration with the Kennedy Center!!
  • Shout out to all teachers and students who attended the “hidden figures” field trip last week!!
  • Kudos to the PGT for another outstanding Professional Development session!!
  • Shout out to Mr. Aking for the student-teacher basketball game!!!

Submitted by Demario Hardmon Fort

Last week, several CHEC Bellmen tried a new practice in mental, physical, and spiritual wellness through a guided session of deep meditation and relaxation. The session was facilitated by Mr. Manny Salazar, a military veteran and proud Dominican, who credits Yoga Nidra as his go-to practice for self-care and emotional management. Laying under low lights, guided by Mr. Salazar's tranquil words, our boys experienced the therapy of dedicated quiet time, deep relaxation, and focus on personal intent. After the session, they reported feeling relieved of certain anxieties, and less concerned with things that upset them before. What would the classroom look like if more of our students had dedicated time to reflect and center themselves before, during, or after the school day on a regular basis? You can learn more about the Bellmen initiative at checbellmen.com.   If you would like to contribute time, resources, or contacts with the group, please contact Mr. Hardmon at dhf@speaklight.org.


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, February 1, and our next ALT/Leadership Team meeting will be Wednesday, February 15, 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


Lesson 1: What Is Restorative Justice?

Restorative justice views crime as more than breaking the law – it also causes harm to people, relationships, and the community. So, a just response must address those harms as well as the wrongdoing. If the parties are willing, the best way to do this is to help them meet to discuss those harms and how to about bring resolution. Other approaches are available if they are unable or unwilling to meet. Sometimes those meetings lead to transformational changes in their lives.
Notice three big ideas: (1) repair: crime causes harm and justice requires repairing that harm; (2) encounter: the best way to determine how to do that is to have the parties decide together; and (3) transformation: this can cause fundamental changes in people, relationships and communities.

A more formal definition is this: Restorative Justice is a theory of justice that emphasizes repairing the harm caused by criminal behavior. It is best accomplished through cooperative processes that allow all willing stakeholders to meet, although other approaches are available when that is impossible. This can lead to transformation of people, relationships and communities.

The foundational principles of restorative justice have been summarized as follows:
  1. Crime causes harm and justice should focus on repairing that harm.
  2. The people most affected by the crime should be able to participate in its resolution.
  3. The responsibility of the government is to maintain order and of the community to build peace.

If restorative justice were a building, it would have four corner posts:
  1. Inclusion of all parties
  2. Encountering the other side
  3. Making amends for the harm
  4. Reintegration of the parties into their communities

To review: restorative justice...
  • is a different way of thinking about crime and our response to crime
  • focuses on repairing the harm caused by crime and reducing future harm through crime prevention
  • requires offenders to take responsibility for their actions and for the harm they have caused
  • seeks redress for victims, recompense by offenders and reintegration of both within the community
  • requires a cooperative effort by communities and the government

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:

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.

Back to content | Back to main menu