Marquis Cotton: My faith in Out-of-School Time programs

March 15, 2022

I’ll never forget the moment when the officer of the corrections facility I was in ordered me to report to the Chaplin’s Office. Because only a few moments later, I was informed that my unborn child, who my wife was pregnant with at the time, did not make it through the delivery.  I returned to […]

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Tyesha Andrews: Advocating as an Andrews and a PAVE parent leader

March 15, 2022

My advocacy for School-Based Mental Health (SBMH) supports stems from personal experience. Growing up, I felt high levels of stress and anxiousness, especially when I was in the classroom. Despite these feelings being so visually apparent, my family, teachers, and schools did nothing to help. This is why I fight for kids in the District […]

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Tara Brown: No RSVP needed to the table, parents! We’re the VIPs

December 14, 2021

As parents, we are responsible for raising the next generation of citizens.  To do this, we take on the role as caregivers. We provide our children with a safe environment. We make sure they are nourished and healthy. And we do not hesitate to protect our children from harm.  Through all this provision, we are […]

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Datiece Frazier: Empowering the community to build safe passage

October 27, 2021

I loved my neighborhood growing up. Walking around, it felt like a block party was happening on every corner. Everyone knew each other and we were always coming together.  The neighborhoods don’t feel like this now. As a native Washingtonian, I’ve seen my city change in more ways than one, but it’s the loss of […]

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Tara Brown: Learning to practice patient parenting

May 25, 2021

Trigger Warning: This blog piece mentions multiple attempts of suicide.  My daughter almost died three times before I even knew that there was a problem.  To think that she attempted suicide three times before I could get her help is the reason why I lie awake at night.  I can’t help but reflect on all […]

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Loretta Jones: Mental health supports are needed…for the entire family

March 29, 2021

As the city works to recover from COVID-19, PAVE parent leaders are calling for increased mental-health support funding with $6.4 million for expanded programming to at least 80 public schools, $4 million for community providers, and $10.8 million for social-emotional learning and trauma-informed training. Mental health needs among children and families were present before COVID-19. […]

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DaSean Jones: An unusual school year means new routines for families

January 29, 2021

My children’s schooling has always been one of my top priorities, and I work hard to build a rapport with their teachers each new year by visiting their Washington, D.C., schools regularly. Forging those relationships is no small task for my family: I co-parent my four children, in grades high school down to prekindergarten, with […]

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Dionna Howard: The cost of this pandemic has been lives

January 21, 2021

2020 was too much death. Since the beginning of the pandemic, I’ve lost three uncles, one of whom was like a father to me. My life felt like it ended with his passing. I received the call that he died at 4:00 a.m, yet the last time I had spoken with him was just 15 […]

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Jonida Spahija: Families need safe, in-person options for students who struggle with learning from home

January 21, 2021

Teaching in person and teaching remotely is a vastly different experience for students, teachers, and parents alike. My 5-year-old daughter, Z, is competitive, extroverted, and curious. Like many students across the district did in September, Z started a brand-new school remotely where she was confronted with unfamiliar teachers, classmates, norms, and curriculum, as well as […]

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