HOMELESSNESS | Fairfax County is about to set an awful new record. It is expected that, by the end of the school year, the county’s homeless student population will reach its highest-ever number at 2,500 (WaPo, 10/21):
Experts say the increase in homelessness among students, from kindergarten to high school, is related to the lingering effects of the recession. This year’s total will be nearly 10 times the number of homeless students counted in county schools just 15 years ago.
At least 400 of those students are “unaccompanied youths” who live without parents or guardians, another record, school officials say.
This trend is especially disturbing considering the fact that Fairfax is said to be the second most affluent county in the entire United States of America.
Related: A new report from the Center for Housing Policy finds that D.C. is…the most affordable city in America? (GGW, 10/19)
EDUCATION | The District’s Deputy Mayor for Education De’Shawn Wright has announced that he will be leaving his post to serve in a similar capacity in New York. Wright’s chief of staff, Jennifer Leonard, will fill his position on an interim basis (WaPo, 10/18):
The departure comes at a critical moment for education in the District, as officials try to envision and plan for the future of both traditional D.C. public schools and charter schools, systems that operate independently and often compete for city resources.
- Opinion: Keeping the ‘T’ in STEM (WaPo, 10/22) The article is about the importance of technology education for girls and says, “Early exposure to IT can build confidence in girls, and encourage them to pursue future educational opportunities in the field. “
- Virginia’s McDonnell Addresses Need For Education Improvement (WAMU, 10/22)
PHILANTHROPY | In light of federal legislation that would affect charitable giving, the Council on Foundations has launched a new advocacy initiative “to convey the value of philanthropy to lawmakers.” (Chronicle, 10/19)
PHILANTHROPUB | We’ve mentioned D.C.’s new “philanthropub” a number of times. Here’s another article from the Chronicle about the awesome concept. (Chronicle, 10/19)
COMMUNITY | Opinion: The Atlantic’s Kaid Benfield reviews a recently published article about the seven keys to a strong community and adds his thoughts on the subject. Interesting stuff – do you think these keys are right? (Atlantic, 10/21) Then again, everybody knows that there is only one key to being strong – spinach!
PEOPLE | Our friends at the Association of Baltimore Area Grantmakers have announced that Celeste Amato will serve as the organization’s next president. She succeeds Betsy Nelson, who has led the organization since 1990. (ABAG, 10/19)
TRANSIT | Metro had a ribbon cutting ceremony over the weekend. For new escalators. (WTOP, 10/21) Never miss an opportunity to celebrate, I guess?
In anticipation of the nausea of spin and barrage of half-truths that tonight’s debate will undoubtedly provide, I recommend that everyone take a few minutes to understand the presidential race from the perspective of children. This video is frank, funny, and perhaps more coherent than the opinions of many of our voting citizens.
Also, if you’d rather do something else tonight than watch the debate, you could go see Ben Affleck’s fantastic masterpiece Argo. It’s sure to be on the Best Picture list this year.
Hope you all enjoyed the weekend.