Students at Washington Metropolitan High School are concerned that the administration of D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser is likely to close their school at the end of the year.
D.C. Public Schools (DCPS) sent a letter in late November to parents of the school’s students and stakeholders about a proposal to shut down Washington Metropolitan High at the end of 2019 due to low attendance and enrollment, as well as graduation rates.
Washington Met is one of the District’s four “Opportunity Academies,” also known as alternative schools, that are dedicated to educating students who experience issues in more traditional environments. It is also the only school of this category for middle schoolers.
It has been serving a total of 136 students who attend from eighth grade through 12th, the overwhelming majority of which are black. The students will have to transfer to a new school next year, if DCPS’ proposal gets approval.
— Metro DC DSA (@mdc_dsa) December 16, 2019
“It’s for people that need a chance to get back on their feet,” senior Na’asia Hawkins told WUSA9. Hawkins says she had a baby when she was a sophomore at Anacostia High School and she wasn’t accepted back after her leave for birth.
Washington Met was her only option, according to her. She won’t be able to graduate if the school closes.
— Doctor Morrison (@DocBk12) December 19, 2019
On Friday, Washington Met students received a solidarity visit from rapper No Savage, who attended the high school in 2018, before dropping out for his music career.
“I feel like this school is different because people were actually giving me a chance. People were interacting with me—there were a hundred people in this school trying with me,” the Southeast D.C. native said.
Students, families, teachers and community members have been campaigning and collecting signatures for getting the decision posponed. December 20 is the deadline for public input regarding the proposal.
Submit your comments here: DCPS.Planning@k12.dc.gov
— WTU Local 6 (@WTUTeacher) December 20, 2019