The following is a letter to DC’s Deputy Mayor for Education, Jennifer Niles from the PTO’s Overcrowding Committee…
May 11, 2017
Dear Deputy Mayor Niles,
Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to attend the Glover Park Citizens’ Association Meeting on May 2, 2016, at Stoddert Elementary School. The Stoddert community was happy to welcome you and learn more about education in Washington, DC.
We were hoping to hear more about the specific plan to alleviate overcrowding at Stoddert. As you know, Stoddert is the most overcrowded school in Washington, DC with 435 students enrolled into a school building designed for 320 students. At 135% over capacity, Stoddert’s situation demands a plan address the serious educational, safety and security challenges that are occurring because the school’s core facility is so grossly overcrowded.
We very much look forward to participating in the upcoming Community Working Group to discuss long-range capacity and enrollment issues throughout the city. However, the 18 month timeframe that you indicated for this group is simply too long for Stoddert. Stoddert’s students have been in trailers for three years with no end in sight. The trailers are crumbling, they are unsafe and they are a distraction to learning.
When can we expect to see a plan that acknowledges and addresses overcrowding at Stoddert?
We were also hoping to find out when the 2016, annual supplement for the Master Facilities Plan will be made available. In accordance with DC Code – § 38–2803 “Multiyear Facilities Master Plan,” the Office of Public Education Facilities Planning within your office is required to “prepare and make publicly available an annual supplement to the Master Facilities Plan.”
In years past, the supplemental has been available in early to mid-March. It is May and we have not seen the 2016 supplemental. The supplemental is important to the DCPS community for many reasons. Most notably, it is required by DC code. Additionally, it is within the supplemental that you are required to provide updated enrollment projections and provide plans for facilities that are designated as overcrowded.
When can we expect to see the 2016 annual supplement to the Master Facilities Plan?
We very much look forward to working with you, DCPS and our elected officials to develop a plan for Stoddert. Thank you for attending the meeting at Stoddert and we look forward to your response to our questions.
Stoddert Parent Teacher Organization, Overcrowding Committee, Chair
CC: Mayor Muriel Bowser, Council Chairman Phil Mendelson, Council Member Mary Cheh, Council Member David Grasso, Chancellor Antwan Wilson, Carla Watson, Michael Porcello, Michael Gaal, Shanita Burney, Bridget Stesney, Phil Thomas, Stoddert Principal Donald Bryant
Enclosure: Stoddert ES Facility Overcrowding Brief
PDF version of this letter: Deputy Mayor Niles Letter – May 2017