WASHINGTON, DC — Ten D.C. State Board of Education representatives sent a letter Wednesday to D.C. Public Schools Chancellor Dr. Lewis Ferebee urging him to move quickly in renaming Woodrow Wilson High School.
“This request has heightened urgency for us given our country’s and city’s broad examination of race and racism — and their connection to our schools,” the letter said. “Whatever one might think of Wilson’s efforts in international affairs on other matters, as president, his role in Washington DC was ugly and civically corrosive — he worked systematically to demote and segregate DC’s African-American civil servants, who previously build a thriving middle-class community. It is time to change the name.”
Backers of the name change have already collected nearly 15,000 signatures on a petition started by The DC History and Justice Collective.
While the Collective’s petition, which it launched in 2015, acknowledges President Wilson’s position as a progressive and internationalist statesman, it also criticizes the implementation of Jim Crow policies in D.C. that occurred during his administration.
“President Wilson led an administration that fired and demoted black workers who had found a road to advancement in the federal civil service,” according to the Collective’s website. “These racist policies decimated the black middle class in Washington in the early 20th century and fired up the segregation in housing and education that has kept many in the black community separate and unequal to this day.”
The Collective’s aim is to give the Ward 3 high school a name that better represents the values of the community.
“Renaming the school is not a question of rewriting history or making just symbolic, superficial change,” according to the Collective’s website. “We are convinced that changing the name of the school will open the way to a deep conversation about and acknowledgement of the racist policies that have shaped our city and our nation.”
In their letter, the SBOE representatives quoted a June 1 communication from Ferebee, encouraging members of the DCPS community to have courageous conversations about race within their families.
“Our schools stand proud in our neighborhoods, welcoming all who walk through the doors to be their true selves and allow students to be extraordinary,” Ferebee said, in the letter. “Our schools are also a refuge, a place where students and families can find the support they need for their wellbeing.”
According to the SBOE letter, the effort to rename Wilson High School also has the support of currents students, alumni, residents, and Ward 3 Councilmember Mary Cheh.
“No one is entitled to have a building named after him or her,” Cheh said, in a February 2019 statement. “It should be an honor. And if there are significant dishonorable aspects in a person’s past, that person is not entitled to be so honored. President Wilson’s segregationist legacy and abhorrent attitude towards African Americans are undeniable. If the Wilson High School community is interested in changing the name of the school, then I support them.”
The 1o signatories to the SBOE letter are: Ruth Wattenberg (president), Markus Batchelor (vice president), Emily Gasoi (Ward 1), Jack Jacobson (Ward 2), Frazier O’Leary (Ward 4), Zachary Parker (Ward 5), Jessica Sutter (Ward 6), Karen Williams (Ward 7), Dayja Burton (student representative), and Alex O’Sullivan (student representative).
10 Members of @DCSBOE have penned a letter to @dcpublicschools @DCPSChancellor to change the name of @Wilsonhsdcps. “We urge you to identify a process through which other school names may be reconsidered as well.” Sign petition here: https://t.co/eEWK8z50J1 #RenameWilsonHS pic.twitter.com/9NSHaXmVNy
— DC State Board of Ed (@DCSBOE) June 24, 2020
WASHINGTON, DC — Protesters tried to pull down a statue of President Andrew Jackson near the White House Monday night before being dispersed by police.
WUSA-TV in Washington reported that police used pepper spray to move protesters out of Lafayette Square, where the Jackson statue is located. Videos posted on social media showed that the protesters had climbed on the statue and tied ropes around it, then tried to pull it off its pedestal.
The statue shows Jackson in a military uniform, riding a horse that is rearing on its hind legs. The 19th century president’s ruthless treatment of Native Americans has made his statue a target of demonstrators protesting the United States’ legacy of racial injustice.
The Jackson statue remained on its pedestal Monday night.
President Donald Trump tweeted late Monday that “Numerous people” had been arrested for “the disgraceful vandalism.” He added: “10 years in prison under the Veteran’s Memorial Preservation Act. Beware!”
Interior Secretary David Bernhardt was at the scene Monday night, and issued a statement saying: “Let me be clear: we will not bow to anarchists. Law and order will prevail, and justice will be served.”
On June 1, law enforcement officers forcefully cleared peaceful protesters from Lafayette Square so Trump could stage a photo op at a nearby church.
WASHINGTON, DC — The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in D.C. confirmed Tuesday it would be cancelling most of the previously announced events and performances through the end of this year. Some planned programs will be rescheduled for spring 2021 and beyond.
The performing arts center made the announcement in response to restrictions it was facing under the District’s ongoing response to COVID-19, the illness associated with the new coronavirus.
“Our lives as we have known them have been upended by COVID-19, but the world continues to spin forward and we need artists now more than ever to help light the way,” said Kennedy Center President Deborah Rutter, in a release. “I am deeply proud of our staff and artists who have been forging new digital stages for audiences in the nation’s capital and across the country, and I am equally excited by the work being done to safely allow us to experience the arts once again in person as well. For our patrons with tickets to fall performances, we do ask for your patience and flexibility as we readjust season schedules.”
D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser released guidance last week outlining the restrictions District residents and businesses would be facing as the city moved into Phase Two of its phased reopening this past Monday.
In Phase Two, the number of people allowed at mass gatherings increased to 50 people. In addition, theaters, cinemas and entertainment venues would remain closed. However, the District announced it would offer a waiver process to consider operations at a venue-specific request.
The Kennedy Center is developing new programing within the mayor’s guidelines that will take advantage of its diverse indoor spaces and more than 130,000 square feet of outdoor green space, which would allow for social distancing. The center will also offer previously planned performances that had been moved to alternate venues. Updates about all of these performances will be announced in July.
The Kennedy Center also announced these changes to three of its signature events:
The 43rd annual Kennedy Center Honors will is now scheduled for March 7, 2021.The 23rd Mark Twain Prize for American Humor will be presented on June 20, 2021.The National Symphony Orchestra (NSO) Opening Night Gala, originally scheduled for Sept.26, has been cancelled.
Due to these all of these changes, the Kennedy Center expects to lose an estimated $45.7 million in ticket sales and other income during the 2020-2021 season, according to the release. The center is looking at cost-cutting across the institution to retain as many artistic and staff positions as possible. It has already begun discussions with its constituent union partners.
The Center hopes to present updated seasons for the National Symphony Orchestra, Washington National Opera, and other programing in January, with an announcement about the offerings coming later this summer.
Subscribers holding tickets for affected performances will have the value of those tickets placed on account. Kennedy Center representatives will be in contact with options once amended seasons have been announced. More information for subscribers can be found online.
Also see …
Bowser Announces Date, Guidance For Phase 2 Reopening
WASHINGTON, DC — D.C. Department of Health reported two new deaths Tuesday due to COVID-19, the illness associated with the coronavirus. This brings the total number of deaths in the District to COVID-19 to 537.
The two additional COVID-19 related deaths are described as:
59-year-old female73-year-old male
D.C. Health also confirmed 36 new positive cases of COVID-19, Tuesday, bringing the District’s total number of positive cases to 10,094.
According to D.C. Health, 82,302 COVID-19 tests have been administered in the District, 65,073 D.C. residents have been tested, and 1,192 have been cleared from isolation.
The District entered phase two of reopening on Monday, lifting a number of restrictions for residents and businesses. Phase two will allow the number of people allowed at mass gatherings to increase to 50 people. Nonessential businesses, including retailers, will also be permitted to serve up to 50 customers inside their business and continue curbside service.
The District currently has 88 intensive care unit beds available out of 345 total intensive care unit beds. There are currently 199 in-use ventilators and 61 COVID-19 positive ICU patients.
Globally, more than 9.1 million people have been infected by COVID-19, and over 472,000 people have died, Johns Hopkins University reported Tuesday morning. In the United States, more than 2.3 million people have been infected and over 120,000 people have died from COVID-19.
COVID-19 Cases By Age And Gender
Total of Positive COVID-19 Cases By Ward
WASHINGTON, DC — Homicide detectives from the Metropolitan Police Department are investigating a shooting incident in Kenilworth that left a man and a woman dead early Sunday morning, according to a police release.
Around 2:20 a.m., officers from the Sixth District responded to the 1400 block of Kenilworth Ave., N.E., for the repot of the sound of gunshots. They found an adult male and female suffering from gunshot wounds. After examining the victims, D.C. Fire and EMS determined there were no signs consistent with life. The victims were taken later to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.
MPD identified the decedents as Larkia Izlar, 23, of Southeast, and Timothy Hinton, 28, of Suitland, Maryland.
Police ask anyone with information about this incident to call 202-727-9099 or submitted a text message to 50411.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Metro users will be able to commute via rail once again starting Sunday, officials announced Monday, as 15 rail stations are set to reopen following coronavirus-related closures.
In addition to reopening rail stations, buses will be added to the system’s 14 busiest bus lines starting June 29 in order to provide more capacity and more frequent services as the region reopens.
The following rail stations will reopen on Sunday:
Federal Center SWFederal TriangleMt. Vernon SqJudiciary SqArchivesSmithsonianGrensboroEisenhower AveVirginia SqEast Falls ChurchMcLeanVan Dorn St.ClarendonCleveland ParkGrosvenor-StrathmoreCollege Park Morgan Blvd
At Greensboro, East Falls Church and McLean Stations, shuttle buses will be provided, as there is currently no rail service at those stations due to platform reconstruction work.
After Sunday, Arlington Cemetery will the only Metro station without regular service, as the Arlington National Cemetery is closed to the general public.
Selected entrances will also reopen at the following stations:
AnacostiaFarragut NorthDupont CircleMetro CenterRonald Reagan Washington National AirportU StreetGallery Place-ChinatownFriendship HeightsL’Enfant Plaza
Bus Service Realignment
More regular service on the busiest lines will begin on June 29, with 136 additional trips being added across 14 routes. The impacted routes are: 54, 70, 92, 30N, 30S, A4, A6, A8, P6, V4, W4, F4, P12 and T18.
Four bus routes will be suspended temporarily: NH2, C14, G2 and M6.
For more information on impacted bus routes, visit wmata.com.
As D.C. Enters Phase Two, 38 New Coronavirus Cases Reported
WASHINGTON, DC – A 16-year-old boy has been arrested in connection with four murders and six shootings in the past couple of months, Metropolitan Police said in a release on Monday.
Michael Mason, of Southeast DC, was arrested on Wednesday and is being charged as an adult with four counts of first degree murder while armed, four counts of assault with intent to kill while armed, assault with intent to murder while armed and assault with a dangerous weapon.
The incidents date back to a death on April 7, according to a release on the police department’s website. Just before 11 p.m. on April 7, officers responded to the 3900 block of Alabama Ave. SE for a report of the sounds of gunshots. Members of the Prince George’s County Police Department were dispatched to the 3900 block of Suitland Road, in Suitland, MD, for the report of a shooting shortly thereafter, according to police.
When officers arrived, they found a woman inside a vehicle suffering from a gunshot wound. The woman was transported to a local hospital, where she was pronounced dead. She was identified as Brea Moon, 21 of District Heights, MD. Further investigation showed the shooting occurred in the 3900 block of Alabama Avenue SE, police said.
On May 19, just after 1:30 p.m., officers responded to the 2400 block of Martin Luther King, Jr. Ave., SE, for the sounds of gunshots. Officers found two men and a woman suffering from gunshot wounds. D.C. Fire and EMS determined the two men displayed no signs consistent with life. The woman was transported to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries. The men have been identified as Jaszel Henderson, 20, and Terrance Griffin, 31, both of Southeast D.C.
On Friday, May 22, just before 5 p.m. officers responded to the 3800 block of East Capitol Street, NE, for the report of a shooting. When officers arrived, they found an unconscious man suffering from gunshot wounds. D.C. Fire and EMS determined the man displayed no signs consistent with life, police said. The man was identified as Antwuan Roach, 18, of Southwest, D.C.
In addition to Mason’s arrest, Daquan jones, 19, has been charged with one count of first degree murder while armed in connection with a shooting of a juvenile.
WASHINGTON, D.C.– There are 38 additional cases of the new coronavirus in Washington, D.C., according to data reported for Sunday, bringing the District’s total number of cases to 10,058.
Two additional coronavirus-related deaths were reported for Sunday, as well. This brings the total number of COVID-19-related deaths in the District to 535. COVID-19 is the disease caused by the coronavirus.
According to Monday’s
WASHINGTON, DC – July 4 events across the country will not look the same this year thanks to the coronavirus. Many cities and towns have been forced to cancel the annual Fourth of July events, including D.C. Although the District’s fireworks, parade and 5K event have been canceled, they have been replaced with some outdoor activities and televised events.
A Capitol Fourth: For 40 years, PBS has been broadcasting its annual concert from the National Mall in Washington, D.C., ending with a fireworks show over the National Mall. While this year’s fireworks show has been canceled, will still air Saturday, July 4, from 8-9:30 p.m. ET, on PBS.Explore D.C.’s Waterfronts: D.C. sits at the confluence of the Anacostia and Potomac rivers. Take advantage of the warm summer weather, grab an oar, and paddle away the day.An American Celebration at Mount Vernon: Celebrate the nation’s birthday with a visit to the home of America’s first president. Actives are offered throughout the day on Saturday, July 4, from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Buy tickets.Dine Along the Georgetown Riverfront: With D.C. now in Phase Two of its phased reopening, many restrictions have been lifted on restaurants. If you don’t feel like dining, wander around the waterfront and check out the attractions.Visit the National Zoo or a Museum: Although many museums and the National Zoo may be open, Phase Two restrictions limited the capacity to 50 people in enclosed rooms or exhibit paces. Museum events are permitted, but with a maximum capacity of 50 people.Take a Virtual Run: RunnerMania is a virtual running festival scheduled fro July 3-5. Runners can run a 5K, half marathon, or 24-hour ultra. Register here.Visit a Park: While playgrounds remain closed, dog parks, golf courses, parks tennis courts, tracks and fields that are part of the D.C. Parks and Recreation Department are now open.
Due to the pandemic, counties or cities may adjust or cancel events at the last minute. Check your event before you go. Know of other events in the area? Post them on the Patch calendar or share details on our free Neighbor Post feature.
Check out this roundup of everything from barbecue essentials to patriotic table decor to be sure your July 4 is the best in the USA.
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