The Ward 5 Report: Office of Councilmember Kenyan R. McDuffie

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The Ward 5 Report:
Office of Councilmember Kenyan R. McDuffie
April 19, 2013


Ward 5 Highlights:

DC Celebrates Emancipation Day

DC Celebrates Emancipation Day

On Tuesday, Councilmember McDuffie joined his colleagues, staff and residents of the District of Columbia to celebrate the 151st Anniversary of DC Emancipation Day.

This year’s Emancipation Day festivities included a parade down Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, led by the Mayor and the Council, which featured the United States Armed Forces, UniverSoul Circus, and the marching bands and pep squads of many local public schools. After the parade, residents attended Emancipation Day and budget autonomy workshops in the John A. Wilson Building. Later that evening, attendees were treated to a gospel concert featuring Kirk Franklin, followed by a fireworks show.


Trinity Students Inducted into Pi Sigma Alpha, Political Honorary Society

 Trinity Students Inducted into Pi Sigma Alpha, Political Honorary Society

Recently, Councilmember McDuffie toured the campus of Trinity Washington University and delivered the keynote speech at the induction ceremony of Trinity’s chapter of the National Political Science Honorary Society Pi Sigma Alpha.

“There is nothing that makes me more proud and happy than having the opportunity to congratulate students doing their best to accomplish their goals,” said Councilmember McDuffie. “Becoming a member of Pi Sigma Alpha means that you are no stranger to hard work. Just remember to keep working hard to achieve your dreams.”

Councilmember McDuffie is a member of Pi Sigma Alpha and was inducted at Howard University. Pi Sigma Alpha, the National Political Science Honor Society, is the only honor society for college students of political science and government in the United States. There are now over 740 chapters of Pi Sigma Alpha located on college and university campuses in every state and one in Canada.

Councilmember McDuffie Hosts Community Walk-Through with DC Government Officials in the Gateway Community

Gateway Community Walk-Through

On April 13, Councilmember McDuffie hosted a community walk-through in the Gateway neighborhood with the Gateway Civic Association, Metropolitan Police Department (MPD), the District Department of Transportation (DDOT), the Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR), the Department of General Services (DGS), and other community stakeholders to address quality of life issues and to give residents the opportunity to engage various District agencies. The walk-through provided an opportunity to identify areas where residents wanted to see heightened security, as well as improvements to community facilities.

Gateway Community Walk-Through

Councilmember McDuffie’s office will conduct a follow up walk-through in the coming weeks to monitor what progress has taken place and address any additional concerns. To see additional pictures from the Gateway community walk-through, click here.

Councilmember McDuffie Conducts Oversight of Inspector General

This week, Councilmember McDuffie, Chair of the Committee on Government Operations, issued a letter to Inspector General Charles Willoughby requesting permission to review confidential files compiled during an investigation of test-cheating allegations in DC Public Schools (DCPS). As a result of the recent release of findings by the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSE), investigations by journalists, and the discovery of a confidential memorandum regarding serious allegations of widespread cheating, Councilmember McDuffie issued a letter to the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) outlining his concerns with their investigation around test-cheating in DCPS.

“… I am again expressing concern about the fastidiousness of the OIG’s investigations. As you have rightly stated, District residents rely on your office to help prevent fraud, waste and abuse. While I do not wish to make inflammatory accusations, the discovery of this memorandum creates doubt that your investigation thoroughly and expansively examined the allegations regarding the District of Columbia Comprehensive Assessment System Standardized Exams administered by DCPS,” Councilmember McDuffie states in the letter.

Click here to read the entire letter from Councilmember McDuffie.

Recently, OSSE released a report on Testing Integrity Findings for School Year 2011-2012. The report investigates the integrity of the statewide District of Columbia Comprehensive Assessment System exam, which was administered on April 17-27, 2012, at 243 schools in both District of Columbia Public (DCPS) and Charter Schools.

Councilmember McDuffie issued the following statement on OSSE’s report on Testing Integrity Findings for School Year 2011-2012:

“I am deeply concerned with OSSE’s finding of widespread testing violations in the District’s public and charter school systems. Further, I am disturbed that three Ward 5 schools have been identified in OSSE’s audit, including Langdon Elementary School, where severe testing violations occurred. OSSE informs me that 40 percent of the scores at Langdon Elementary Campus will be invalidated due to test tampering or academic fraud. This news is even more troubling given that Langdon Elementary School is slated to absorb additional students from the imminent closure of Thurgood Marshall Elementary School.”

To read Councilmember McDuffie’s complete statement, click here.

Councilmember McDuffie Engages the Community in Office Hours

 New York Avenue Recreation Center Office Hours

On April 13, Councilmember McDuffie held his Ward 5 Community Engagement Office Hours at the New York Avenue Recreation Center. During the meeting, Councilmember McDuffie outlined his agenda and heard from residents on how his office could better serve the community. The Community Engagement Office Hours is a tradition that Councilmember McDuffie started shortly after taking office. These meetings are designed to give Ward 5 residents a venue to voice their concerns and offer suggestions without having to travel to the John A. Wilson Building.

Providence Hospital Commissions New Emergency Services Department

 Providence Hospital

Providence Hospital, located in Ward 5, will be growing and modernizing its Emergency Services Department. This week, Councilmember McDuffie joined members of the hospital’s board and staff to lean his support for the new annex.

Providence Hospital is the longest operating hospital in Washington, DC. The new Emergency Department will incorporate an open floor plan and will grow from 13,000 to 24,000 square feet. To read more about the Providence expansion project, click here.

Councilmember McDuffie Joins Community Organizers to Plant Trees at the Ward 5 September 11 Memorial Grove

 9-11 Memorial Grove

The September 11 Memorial Tree Grove, located in Langdon Park, was originally planted by residents of Ward 5 in honor of three students, three District of Columbia teachers and two staff members from the National Geographic Society who were among the victims of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. On April 13, Councilmember McDuffie joined Casey Trees, Premier Community Development Corporation, the Woodridge Civic Association, the National Horseshoe Pitchers Association, the Geneva Ivey Day School, and members of the community for a Langdon Community Tree Planting event.

The event brought together over 40 participants from the community and various organizations to plant new trees and improve the September 11 Memorial Tree Grove. Participants also planted trees in the horseshoe pit area next to the Memorial Grove. More information about 9/11 Memorial projects in the District can be found at 

Councilmember McDuffie Marches for Peace

Councilmember McDuffie Marches for Peace

Last week, Councilmember McDuffie joined supporters to march for peace in response to the recent violence in the District. In 2011, Tony Lewis, Jr. and Silas Grant held a March for Peace event at the intersection of North Capitol Street and Florida Ave, NW, the site of the murder of Bill Mitchell, Jr. Organizers held a second march in response to a shooting that recently occurred on North Capitol Street and New York Avenue, NW. Other attendees included Councilmembers David Grosso and Tommy Wells, and Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners Teri Janine Quinn, Mark Mueller, Joyce Robinson-Paul, and Wanda Foster.


Councilmember McDuffie Supports Local Arts Programming

This week, Councilmember McDuffie’s staff met with the DC Advocates for the Arts to discuss their budget needs for FY14. The group has organized DC’s Arts Advocacy Day every year for more than a decade.

"Our community is not only inspired by the arts, our community is employed in the arts, and educated by the arts,” said Councilmember McDuffie. “Ward 5 arts organizations like Dance Place and Art Enables are part of what make me proud to represent my community. The arts contribute to an environment conducive to healthy families and happy neighborhoods. I wholeheartedly support the work of the arts, and at least level funding for the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities for the coming budget year. I want to thank all of the advocates who are speaking up about this issue. I'm with you in this fight. The arts may be a small part of the DC budget, but they have a big impact."

To learn more about the DC Advocates for the Arts, please visit:


DC Agencies Will Hold Follow-Up Meeting on Turkey Thicket/Brookland School Middle Project

Please join representatives from DGS, DPR and DCPS for a follow-up community meeting on the upcoming Turkey Thicket/Brookland Middle School projects. Agency representatives will be on hand to provide a project update on the school footprint for the site and continue to engage with residents.

The meeting will be held Saturday, April 20, at the Turkey Thicket Recreation Center, located at 1100 Michigan Avenue, NE, beginning at 10:00 a.m.

DPR Announces Registration for the 30th Annual DC Senior Games

DPR will conduct open registration for the 30th Annual DC Senior Games. Registration continues through May 1. The DC Senior Games are scheduled to take place May 6 – May 13 at various locations throughout the District of Columbia. Registration for the DC Senior Games can be completed online by visiting the 2013 Senior Games web page or seniors may apply in person at one of DPR's recreation centers.

For more information, please contact DPR Customer Service at 202-673-7647 or visit the DPR website:

Open House for the McMillan Sand Filtration Site

Come see the building designs for the park, community center, grocery store, apartments, townhouses and offices from the Vision McMillan Developers and project architects. The opening house will be on Saturday, April 27, from 12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. at the St. George’s Episcopal Church, located at 160 U Street, NW.

PUBLIC NOTICE: BOE Announces the Relocation of Precinct No. 70 and No. 77 for the April 23 Special Election

Please be advised that Precinct No. 70 will be relocated from Burroughs Elementary School, located at 1820 Monroe Street, NE, to the Perry Street Prep PCS at Taft, located at 1800 Perry Street, NE. The relocation is necessary because Burroughs Elementary School is under construction.

Additionally, Precinct No. 77 will be relocated from Delta Towers Apartment, located at 1400 Florida Avenue, NE to the Joseph H. Cole Recreation Center, located at 1299 Neal Street, NE. This relocation was necessary because BOE has received numerous complaints about the inadequate space and long lines at Delta Towers.

BOE will notify all registered voters in the precincts of these changes. One Judiciary Square is the only Early Vote Center open for this Election. It is open until Saturday, April 20 from 8:30 a.m. until 7:00 p.m.

If you have any questions, please contact BOE at (202) 727-5704 or visit 

**Ward 5 Events:

Councilmember McDuffie, or a member of his staff, will attend the following events:

Monday, April 22 –The Edgewood Civic Association holds its monthly meeting at the View in Crawford Hall, located at 635 Edgewood Street NE, beginning at 7:00 p.m. 

Tuesday, April 23 –The Trinidad Neighborhood Association holds its monthly meeting at the Joseph H. Cole Recreation Center, located at 1299 Neal Street, NE, beginning at 7:00 p.m.

Wednesday, April 24 – ANC 5A will hold its monthly meeting at the Potomac Lighthouse PCS, located at 4401 8th Street, NE, beginning at 6:30 p.m.

Wednesday, April 24 – ANC 5B will hold its monthly meeting at the ANC 5B office, located at 1322 Irving Street, NE, beginning at 6:30 p.m.

** Councilmember McDuffie’s public schedule is subject to change.