Member Update - March 18

We want to Thank everyone who was able to join us for a chat with President Davis on Monday evening. At the peak of the call, we had over 400 people on the line. We’ll host additional Virtual Town Halls as the situation requires. Yesterday, we compiled the information we received via text, email and on the call and shared a list of topics we discussed with DC Public Schools officials. Today, we want to share that information with you. We encourage you to continue to share your questions and concerns with us via email at [email protected] or contact your Field Rep.

We have a(nother) short survey we’d like you to complete to help us understand the challenges that you’ll face as we move to Distance Learning on Tuesday, March 24. Please click here: https://forms.gle/VDppXqxdj8EKa3EK8


The Access Gap

Our top priority during this public health crisis is your health and that of our community. However, we also want to ensure that instruction can continue and that we support teachers & students in this transition. We know that many of our students will lack computers and internet access (Comcast has made internet access available, free in many cases). If you identify a student or family in need of a computer or internet access (Comcast has made internet access available, free in many cases), please email your school and the grade of the student to [email protected]. We want to ensure that DCPS and our city’s elected officials are aware of the needs and that Distance Learning doesn’t increase our city’s achievement gaps.




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Virtual Resources for Distance Learning

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Virtual Tools and Resources for Distance Learning

Virtual Tools and Resources for Distance Learning


Please join WTU Professional Development Coordinator Sarah Elwell for a virtual session via Zoom that explores virtual tools and resources that can be used for distance learning and communicating with students and families in the event of a school shutdown.


Time: Mar 14, 2020 11:00 AM


Join Zoom Meeting: https://zoom.us/j/848478429




Time: Mar 16, 2020 09:00 AM


Join Zoom Meeting: https://zoom.us/j/433524160




Time: Mar 16, 2020 06:00 PM


Join Zoom Meeting: https://zoom.us/j/318373489



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COVID - 19 -- Specialized Cleaning

Specialized Cleaning


In addition to current cleaning activities routinely carried out by DCPS custodians, specialized cleaning is being performed daily.  Enhanced routines include:


·       Increased attention to cleaning all frequently touched surfaces in common areas and restrooms, including but not limited to doorknobs, light switches, elevator buttons, tables, sink faucets, toilets, chairs, and any other hard surfaces in common areas.

·       Disinfection of each cleaned surface, such as through the use of a disinfectant spray, after cleaning.

·       Use of CDC-recommended products.


Each school has a designated individual who oversees operations. Please contact this individual or your Building Representative if you have any concerns regarding supplies, sink functionality, or other issues that may prohibit the proper washing of hands.


For any questions about COVID-19, DCPS encourages you to visit https://coronavirus.dc.gov/, which includes information from DC Health. Questions may also be directed to [email protected].

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COVID - 19 -- Share My Lesson

Share My Lesson – from the AFT


To help you prepare for possible school closures, Share My Lesson launched a new community for educators, school staff, parents and community members to find and share ideas, tips, resources and free lessons. This Remote Learning Community has content on the coronavirus, learning-at-home lesson plans for teachers and parents, and resources on social-emotional learning, mental health and trauma-informed practices.


In this online community, you can:

Finally, the AFT just published an important checklist of questions you should ask your school or school district now to ensure everyone is prepared for distance learning. This checklist covers important questions on topics such as technology access, preparation and training, and technology support for English language learners and for students with disabilities. Use this checklist to ensure your school, students and parents are prepared.




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WTU Professional Development CANCELLED through March 0

The health of our students and staff remain our top concern. As such, all WTU sponsored Professional Development will be cancelled through Friday, March 20, including the special PD sessions for Flagway Games and Equity.

We'll review information and recommendations from local health authorities and determine early next week whether classes can resume on Saturday, March 21.


You can still register for Spring Professional Development Courses here. WTU’s professional development courses are all research-based, peer-to-peer and solution-driven. They all help teachers build content knowledge and mastery of pedagogical strategies.

If you have questions, please contact Sarah Elwell at [email protected].

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Statement on Closure of Washington Met

A school closure is not accountability; it is failure. At a time when our city is investing millions of dollars to expand capacity and programming at our highest performing schools, it must also invest in our most at-risk students. If DCPS touts equity as one of its priorities, closing a school rather than providing resources that will improve student outcomes is the wrong decision for the city to make.

Washington Met is an alternative school that provides unique services to middle and high school students who have not found success in the traditional school environments. It is the only alternative program for middle school students; 100% of the students that attend the school are classified as economically disadvantaged; over 30% of students receive special education services. Closing this school and further destabilizing the students in this community is not in the students’ best interest.

The Washington Teachers’ Union is disappointed to learn of Chancellor Ferebee’s decision to close Washington Metropolitan Opportunity Academy effective at the end of the 2019-2020 school year. Over the past few weeks, since the announcement of the potential closure, the feedback from stakeholders and the DC community has been clear – Washington Metropolitan should not close.

We, again, call on Chancellor Ferebee, Mayor Bowser, and the City Council to stop the closure of Washington Metropolitan Opportunity Academy.


Elizabeth Davis, President

Washington Teachers’ Union

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