29 Jul 11
So who has a happening this weekend? Glad you asked!
Friends of Fort Dupont Ice Arena
Escape the heat at a Kids on Ice Saturday Open Practice Session on Saturday from noon to 1:30 PM! No previous skating experiences necessary. Skilled instructors are on hand!
Encore Stage & Studio
You can catch the magical classic Wizard of Oz with a talented young cast on Saturday at 2:00 and 8:00 PM and Sunday at 2:00 PM?at Thomas Jefferson Community Theatre in Arlington. Tickets here!
Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Tickets are going fast for the Pulitzer Prize-winning hilarious and biting Clybourne Park, especially after this great review! 3:00 PM shows on Saturday and Sunday, plus 8:00 Pm on Saturday.
On Saturday at 8:00 PM, Karen Reedy Dance takes the stage at Dance Place. The program will include “Half a Life” by Eric Hampton, “Madame X” by Karla Wolfangle, and several works choreographed by Ms. Reedy.
Reach for College!
Co-sponsored by Reach for College! and the Community College of the District of Columbia, the College Readiness Institute for Educators begins on Monday and continues throughout the week. Educators, college officials and faculty, guidance counselors, and other educators will examine strategies to increase academic rigor in their school or community group and share best practices in college preparation and career readiness. Learn more here!
28 Jul 11
As we mentioned in yesterday’s In The News, Montgomery County (and Kensington specifically) will welcome its first charter school in 2012, run by CFP non-profit Crossway Community, Inc. As the Post reported:
The Montgomery County Board of Education approved its first charter school Monday night, sending a cheer through the crowded board room and signaling a breakthrough for a movement that is pushing to expand beyond struggling inner-city districts. [...]
School board member Patricia O’Neill (Bethesda-Chevy Chase) said she was proud to help shepherd in a “historic moment in Montgomery County” by voting for the school.
Nearly 28,000 students are currently enrolled in DC public charter schools, an increase of about 400% in the past decade; but such swift change has yet to appear in the surrounding counties. For example, Prince George’s County is home to less than ten charter and contract schools and Maryland as a whole will have 43 charters schools this coming fall (primarily in Baltimore). But should we predict further and faster growth?
Pressure to open charter schools has increased dramatically in recent years as national and state leaders have embraced the publicly funded, privately run alternatives as a stimulus for school reform. [...]
The board rejected Crossway Community’s first application a year ago. But school officials worked with the organization in the spring to address concerns.
The growing prevalence of charter schools has certainly catalyzed a national conversation about education reform this past year; but can we perhaps expect a more highly-localized conversation in this coming year? And should we expect more charter schools to open in DC’s surrounding counties, or will such schools simply remain less common in suburban or rural areas?
Best wishes to Crossway! You can learn more right here.
27 Jul 11
How to make a musical (Washington Post): “The 46 kids with parts in the show (another 16 work backstage or on costumes and lighting) auditioned in April. But rehearsals didn’t begin until the performers arrived at a summer camp that runs every afternoon for six weeks — and requires a lot of hard work [...] But opening night, [director Lorraine] Robinson said, is very special, and gives all the kids an incredible sense of accomplishment.” Do read the full piece to learn more about CFP non-profit Sitar Arts Center’s production of Bye Bye Birdie, which will open this coming weekend in Adam Morgan. All the shows are sold out, but you can arrive one hour before curtain and jump on the waitlist.
First charter school approved in Montgomery County?(Gazette.Net): “Charter schools usually don’t appeal to Montgomery County Board of Education President Christopher S. Barclay. But Monday night, he supported Community Montessori Public Charter School’s application, because he believes it might help the school system consider education from a holistic perspective. Community Montessori, which will serve students in pre-kindergarten through the third grade in Kensington, was approved in a 6-2 vote Monday evening by the Board of Education [...] The school will be run by [CFP organization!] Crossway Community, a nonprofit organization that serves low-income women and children and already operates a Montessori school for children.” Read all »
26 Jul 11
Yesterday afternoon, I just caught this segment on Tell Me More. Particularly at this time of year, tourism is such a regular part of life here in the capitol. But I often forget how the city appears for the first time. Check out this perspective from a Michigan teacher who leads an annual field trip to DC:
[Terry] MILLER: Well, it’s a great opportunity for me to be able to take them on this trip that for some of them it might be the only opportunity to see our nation’s capital. And I think it’s a great opportunity for them to be able to see our nation at work.
Read all »
25 Jul 11
A fast-paced new initiative is set to launch this coming fall in Prince George’s county:
This fall, 100 ninth-graders will attend classes on the campus of Prince George’s Community College in Largo through a public school initiative called the Academy of Health Sciences. They’ll start with typical classes from high school teachers in such subjects as English, biology, math and Chinese.
By 11th grade, administrators expect these students to be immersed in college life. They’ll have meal plans. Ninety percent of their classes will be with professors and college students. Many are expected to earn enough credits to receive an associate’s degree along with a high school diploma. Read all »
22 Jul 11
Oh yes. The heat will continue into the weekend. So do spend an hour (or two) inside at a DC-area non-profit, such as …
On Saturday, 10:00-11:00 AM, learn about volunteer opportunities for adults in all of Alternative House’s programs for homeless and at-risk youth and teens.
Friends of Fort Dupont Ice Arena
Escape the heat at a Kids on Ice Saturday Open Practice Session on Saturday from noon to 1:30 PM! No previous skating experiences necessary.
Encore Stage & Studio
You can catch the magical classic Wizard of Oz with a talented young cast on Saturday at 2:00 and 8:00 PM and Sunday at 2:00 PM at Thomas Jefferson Community Theatre in Arlington. Tickets here!
Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
Tickets are going fast for the Pulitzer Prize-winning hilarious and biting Clybourne Park. 3:00 PM shows on Saturday and Sunday, plus 8:00 Pm on Saturday.
On Saturday at 8:00 PM, experience BAREdance, a collaboration of multiple choreographers that creates harmony of voices, angles, and perspectives.
21 Jul 11
Let’s get to know … Amanda Andere, Executive Director of FACETS in Fairfax, VA. Through emergency and supportive programs to prevent homelessness and assist those who are already homeless, FACETS works to ensure that every area family has a place to call home.
1. What was your most interesting recent project, initiative, partnership, or event?
In May, over 500 people woke up to make a difference at the FACETS Opening Doors Benefit Breakfast. At this free breakfast, members of the community, current supporters, and elected officials heard directly from the people with whom we work about the impact we’ve had on their lives. The result was over $190,000 raised to help us continue to open doors for people in need and break the cycle of poverty and homelessness.
2. What else are you up to?
FACETS is an active partner in the Fairfax-Falls Church Community Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness by 2018. It has changed our work dramatically and we are now embarking on our second joint grant with eight other partners that will help people move from homelessness to housing more quickly. On October 22nd, we will hold our annual Taste of Fall with FACETS — a great event with wonderful food, live and silent auctions, and awesome music. Read all »
20 Jul 11
This week’s bundle of non-profit news — most of it national this time around!
The Unemployed Cutting Corners in their Diets (DCentric): “Eating healthy can be a matter of having access to stores, but it’s also about having enough money to buy healthy food and having the time to cook it.” And to quote from the Huffington Post’s article, “Since housing costs tend to be fixed, many underemployed and unemployed people save money by eating cheaper and unhealthy foods.” That latter point is especially striking. Housing rarely comes cheap or simple, but food does. And inexpensive, convenient foods tends to be less healthy. Obviously, fixing the price of food benefits no one — so how can we keep the flexibility, but improve the health?
The Giving Pledge: Bill Gates, Warren Buffett Visit Obama (Huffington Post): “President Obama will host the nation’s two wealthiest private citizens, Warren Buffett and Bill Gates, at the White House on Monday to receive an update on the Giving Pledge. [...] As the White House and congressional Democrats push for a debt ceiling deal that includes taxes on the wealthiest Americans, the event shines a spotlight on the very people who would bear that burden.” So what should be the topic of chief conversation, the former or latter? Read all »
19 Jul 11
A new study from the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism has received quite a bit of attention since its publication yesterday. Titled “Assessing A New Landscape in Journalism,” the study delves into a new news phenomenon:
As traditional newsrooms have shrunk, a group of institutions and funders motivated by something other than profit are entering the journalism arena. This distinguishes them from the commercial news institutions that dominated the 20th century, whose primary sources of revenue — advertising and circulation — were self-evident. [...]
The 46 national and state-level news sites examined — a group that included seven new commercial sites with similar mission — offered a wide range of styles and approaches, but roughly half, the study found, produced news coverage that was clearly ideological in nature.
Read all »
18 Jul 11
On July 17, 1998, the Rome Statue took effect, leading to the creation of the International Criminal Court. Yesterday, July 17, marked the 13th annual International Justice Day. As David Tolbert wrote for Al Jazeera English:
As we acknowledge International Justice Day on July 17, calls for accountability for human rights abuses resound across the globe, from Cairo to Washington, from Bogota to Kinshasa, from Srebrenica to Colombo. The demands for justice are today a driving force of social change and popular revolutions, and their reach now extends to those at the highest levels of power. Those leaders have, from time immemorial, been deemed untouchable and often afforded immunity in furtive and shabby deals that shielded them from prosecution “for the sake of peace”. That day is passing.
It is essential the past be confronted, the truth be told, victims’ injuries be redressed and steps be taken to ensure institutions that perpetrated crimes — such as the police and military — be reformed. Thus, in addition to the work of international and national courts, broader justice strategies are essential in transitional societies.
It’s a straightforward point, yet a profound challenge: when a crime cannot be prosecuted, or a trial is not enough, how can we assure that injuries are redressed? And moreover, how can we ensure that voices are heard, that stories are told?