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CNN’s climate crisis town hall was very long. It’s unclear how many Washingtonians tuned in because it ran for seven hours and was essentially pay-walled. But we know a lot of D.C.-area residents are worried about climate change—77 percent of them support laws that ban building in areas that can be disrupted by climate change. 

THE NEWS: 

D.C. charter schools have little-to-zero oversight. Case in point: These schools aren’t subject to public records requests, unlike charters in other cities and states. That means it’s hard for the public to learn more about, say, sexual misconduct in schools, which is a known problem at D.C. public schools and charters.

So how did we get here? It starts with federal intervention that can be traced to former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) and continues with charter schools paying hundreds of thousands in taxpayer dollars to private lobbyists. 

In today’s cover story, City Paper’s Rachel M. Cohen takes a closer look at the history of charter schools in the District to better understand how they’ve managed to keep local lawmakers off their backs all this time.      

“It’s a place where philanthropic money, revolving political doors, high-dollar galas, and a bevy of well heeled organizations have all been deployed to help charter schools shape their own regulations—or, more preferably, keep regulation away,” writes Cohen.    

“Now, in the face of questions and community frustration, lawmakers are again under pressure to act. But if city leaders are going to bring newfound transparency to the charter world, they’re going to have to overcome a formidable influence machine with a long history of winning fights in D.C.,” she adds. 

There are some signs that charters schools’ greatest advantage is eroding. At-Large Councilmember and education committee chair David Grosso is showing more willingness than other lawmakers these days to test charters schools’ biggest asset. Read Cohen’s full story, available in print and online, for details. Amanda Michelle Gomez (tips? agomez@washingtoncitypaper.com)

MORE NEWS YOU CAN USE:

  • Why is there no trauma center east of the Anacostia River? City Paper’s Amanda Michelle Gomez helps explain why today at 12 p.m. on the Kojo Nnamdi Show. [WAMU

  • A requiem for a scooter [WCP]

  • D.C. students say they are unjustly issued dress code violations, and research shows there’s disproportionate punishment for black girls. [WAMU

  • A D.C. Superior Court judge says there’s enough evidence to convince a jury to convict a 29-year-old man who fatally shot 11-year-old Karon Brown in July. [Post]  

LOOSE LIPS LINKS, by Mitch Ryals(tips? mryals@washingtoncitypaper.com

  • How much does it cost to send D.C. councilmembers, the mayor, and their staffs to Vegas to schmooze with retailers? [WCP]

  • Post columnist Colby King pokes at the Council of D.C. tweeter. [Twitter]

  • No late-night Metro harms workers. [WAMU]

  • Prince George’s police lieutenant charged with sexual assault. [WTOP]

  • D.C. police chief issues new policies following a house fire that killed a 9-year-old boy and another man. [NBC]

YOUNG & HUNGRY LINKS, by Laura Hayes (tips? lhayes@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • So many D.C. restaurants serve charcuterie boards, but certain factors make it hard for diners to discern if they’re getting a good value. [WCP]

  • How the District’s oldest hardware ended up housing two urban farms. [WCP]

  • There are ways to improve your lunch bowls at fast-casual restaurants. [Washingtonian]

  • Drink Company’s Esports pop-up bar closed early with little explanation. [DCist]

  • RIP Wok and Roll in Adams Morgan. [PoPville]

ARTS LINKS, by Kayla Randall(tips? krandall@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • Peek into the life of Sean Gotkin, Black Cat sound department manager and podcaster. [WCP]

  • A documentary filmmaker is helping lead José Andrés’ World Central Kitchen. [Washingtonian]

  • Two Columbia Heights men fill the neighborhood with music. [DCist]

SPORTS LINKS, by Kelyn Soong (tips? ksoong@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • NBC Sports Washington’s JP Finlay worked as an insurance salesman and politics writer before landing his dream job as a beat reporter covering the local NFL team—the franchise he grew up rooting for in Montgomery County. [WCP]

  • How the Washington Spirit’s Rose Lavelle, an “extroverted introvert” from the Midwest, became the future of the U.S. women’s national soccer team. [The Ringer]

  • Howard University senior Otis Ferguson IV’s love for golf eventually led to a historic moment for the Howard athletic department. [WCP]

  • The month of August was a good one for the Mystics. The WNBA named Mike Thibault coach of the month, while Elena Delle Donne has received every player of the month honor this season. [Bullets Forever

MAKE PLANS, by Emma Sarappo (Love this section? Get the full To Do This Week newsletter here. Tips? esarappo@washingtoncitypaper.com)

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