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While I appreciate and welcome Loose Lips’ continued interest in the activities of the Board of Education, I feel compelled to correct for your readers LL’s item (“Out of Bounds,” 12/6) about the board’s consideration of changes to the current out-of-boundary policy for D.C. Public Schools.

I clearly stated many times in an interview with LL that I favored the lottery unanimously supported by the Out-of-Boundary Ad Hoc Committee. As the chair of the committee, on which William Lockridge (board vice president) and Tommy Wells (District 3 representative) also serve, I support sibling preference. In fact, I championed this provision at the last full board meeting on Nov. 20. Further, I pushed for protection of families who are already in out-of-boundary schools. Therefore, no current students will be affected by a new policy.

For clarification, to date, the Out-of-Boundary Ad Hoc Committee has agreed on a lottery system with preferences for siblings and children living in a three- to five-block radius.

Of course, the entire board recognizes that the underlying, and ultimate, solution is to strengthen our neighborhood schools. Any child in any neighborhood should be able to receive a quality education. This goal is what drives our daily work. Additionally, we will continue to have citywide programs or schools that will be open to all families in the District through a competitive processes—for example, the Duke Ellington School of Arts and Banneker Senior High School.

The board expects to vote on final changes by the end of this calendar year and values the continued input of parents and community members on this important issue. Please visit the board’s Web site at www.k12.dc.us (Board of Education button) for more information.


District of Columbia Board of Education