I’m a Francis Stevens mom, and I think each of us who has a child in the Early Childhood program is highly impressed by the program, the teachers and the facility. We want to stay at this school and make it a viable option through at least Grade 5. I urge DCPS and the Chancellor to help us market this school to families from across the city who commute to K street or the west side of town for work.
I’ve met working parents who come from Logan Circle (as I do) and Wards 1, 4, 6 and 8. The fact that families are willing to travel to Francis Stevens from Capitol Hill and even East of the River should be a indication of the confidence that so many of us share. There’s no reason that young families who are applying to charter schools (as we did, last year) wouldn’t find Francis Stevens just as attractive, if not more so, than options like Inspired Teaching, CapCity, and Two Rivers.
Growing the elementary school is definitely possible. If I was convinced - believe me, I never thought the words "I am a DCPS parent" would come from my mouth - then it *can* be done! Want to know how to recruit new families? Introduce them to current parents and compel them to visit the school. They'll see:
- The Tools of the Mind curriculum - I am amazed at how it focuses a classroom of 3 and 4 year olds as it allows them to engage in play.
- Two playgrounds - one for PS/PK and one for K, new and scrupulously maintained; and two gymnasiums.
- Completely renovated Early Childhood Classrooms that would be the envy of any school in the US.
- Varied and interesting curriculum ("specials") designed to engage young learners.
- Best of all, committed teachers like Ms. Schrauth, who won the District's Excellence in Teaching Award, and Ms. Luppino, who volunteers her own time in the library. Kudos to Principal Kennard for pulling together such an amazing facility and team to staff it.
Please help us preserve Francis Stevens, and to share its story with the rest of the city.