Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Monday, August 3, 2015

Will we or won't we?

ICYMI: John Oliver on DC's lack of statehood

While the entire segment is worthwhile, I most love the song (starting at 15m17s).

The next MacGyver will be a girl!!!

Getting girls and women interested in STEM is important, I think we would all agree.   The how is more challenging.

Some fab organizations came together to create The Next MacGyver, a competition to answer the question "Could television be the secret weapon that gets more girls into science?"

The National Academy of Engineering, The USC Viterbi School of Engineering, MacGyver Foundation, Lee Zlotoff, and The Paley Center for Media have selected five finalists and runners up.   Each finalist received $5,000 and was paired with a successful Hollywood producer as a mentor who will help them develop their original pilot screenplay.

Watch the top 12 pitches and panel discussion in the YouTube video below.

Read Here Are 5 Contenders For A New, Female Macgyver—will One Help Drive Girls To Engineering? for a summary of the competition and the need for girls and women in STEM.

Listen to CM Grosso talk with Kojo Nnamdi

If you missed the July 29 Kojo Nnamdi program featuring a discussion about education with CM David Grosso, have no fear.   You can listen to the talk here, D.C. Council Member David Grosso.   What the site has to say about the CM's appearance:
The first day of D.C. Public Schools is less than a month away, but before the school year can start, there are two big issues to deal with: a controversial, embattled food contract, and behind-schedule construction. D.C. Council Member and Chair of the Committee on Education David Grosso joins us to discuss the challenges facing D.C. Public Schools and other local public policy issues.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Dionne Calhoun: Now in CM McDuffie's office

Dionne Calhoun is now Deputy Chief of Staff and Communications Director for Ward 5 CM Kenyan McDuffie.   You may know Calhoun from her time in At-large CM Grosso's office.

Get in touch to congratulate Calhoun on her new gig:

Learn about and comment on DC's Wildlife Action Plan

The District Department of the Environment wants public input on the city's 2015 wildlife action plan.   The community meeting dates are:
  • Wednesday, August 5, 6:30 - 8:00 pm with a presentation from 6:45 - 7:15 pm, National Zoo (3001 Connecticut Ave NW, Visitor Center Auditorium)
  • Thursday, August 6, 6:30 - 8:00 pm with a presentation from 6:45 - 7:15 pm, DDOE's Aquatic Resources Education Center (1500 Anacostia Dr SE)

No RSVP is required.

The 2015 plan updates the the 2005 plan, providing direction for the city to comply with federal requirements and meet the very real needs of the District's wildlife and habitats.

Listen: Ivy City residents featured on Taking Action

Empower DC dedicated their July 28 edition of their radio program Taking Action to Ivy City, a community with which Empower DC has worked over the years.   About the recent radio program, from their website,
With the city moving toward circulating a Request for Proposals for the development of the historic Alexander Crummell School, this edition of Taking Action is focused on the future of the school. Empower DC’s Parisa Norouzi talks with two current residents, Andria Swanson and Belinda Taylor, as well as an alumna of the Crummell School, Ms. Remetter Freeman, about their vision for the site, the history of the school, and why Crummell is so important to their community.

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Saturday, August 1, 2015

Have something to say about the police and public safety?

The Community Preservation and Development Corporation (CPDC) and the Council for Court Excellence (CCE) are conducting a survey to collect information that will help the two nonprofits "better understand residents’ opinions about safety and policing in their neighborhoods."   Or, take the survey by texting "iamsafe" to 313131.

All responses are confidential.

The organizations will make the report of the findings available this fall.

July 31 DCR Storified

DC history: The Crummell School and its role in the community

There's a new website in town dedicated to DC history: crummellschool.org/.   This new site, created by Friends of Crummell School, presents the history of the Alexander Crummell School, information about the Ivy City community advocacy to restore the abandoned school, and more.

Crummell School is a nationally designated historic landmark.   Learn more about the school and its namesake Alexander Crummell.

Also on the website is information about friends group:

The mission of Friends of Crummell School is to achieve the restoration and reuse of the historic Alexander Crummell School, the heart of the Ivy City community, in a manner that serves, protects and uplifts area residents and their environment.

Members of Friends of Crummell School include area residents, Crummell alumni, clergy, advocates, historic preservation professionals, architects, planners and community development experts.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Save the date for Fall Fest 2015

Rhode Island Avenue Main Street's Fall Fest takes place Saturday, October 3 from 10:00 am - 4:00 pm.   The sponsors are looking for vendors, talent, volunteers, and more.   Visit the Fall Fest 2015 website, riamainstreet.org/fall-fest-2015/.

DC fails in disaster preparedness for kids. Again.

D.C., Virginia Lack Protections For Children In Event Of Disaster, Report Says recaps the latest children and disaster report from Save the Children, Get Ready. Get Safe. 2015 Disaster Report.   WAMU's Ashley Dejean reports,
D.C. and three states aren't doing enough for grade school students, according to Save the Children. The group says the District doesn't have what emergency management officials call a "multi-hazard plan" that's mandatory for all schools.

Unfortunately, not much has changed over the years in DC.   Save the Children has, since 2008, criticized the District for not ensuring children are protected when they are with someone other than their parents, such as when they are in school or childcare.

How safe will the District's children be when disaster strikes? was written in 2010.   How safe would DC's kids be in a disaster? was written in 2013 about the 2013 report.   And Save the Children emergency preparedness report findings: government and parents need to do more was written in 2014.

But the report does show progress in many states.   The image on the right (see page 13 of the report (PDF)) shows that while only four states met the four minimum standards in 2008; 32 states meet the four minimum standards today.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Neil Albert new Downtown DC BID director

September 16: Wikipedia:Meetup/DC/Brookland Neighborhood Editathon

Beat the heat July 30

Thought you might be interested Thursday on the value of libraries in the digital age


The Berkman Center for Internet & Society recently featured author and head of Andover John Palfrey at a talk.   Palfrey discussed his new book BiblioTech: Why Libraries Matter More Than Ever In An Age of Google.

According to the event site,

He argues that anyone seeking to participate in the 21st century needs to understand how to find and use the vast stores of information available online. Libraries play a crucial role in making these skills and information available — and yet are at risk. In order to survive our rapidly modernizing world and dwindling government funding, libraries must make the transition to a digital future as soon as possible—by digitizing print material and ensuring that born-digital material is publicly available online, while continuing to play the vital role as public spaces in our democracy that they have for hundreds of years.