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February 17, 2016 / Ciara Myers, Editor

DCPS hones in on alternative high schools

EDUCATION/DISTRICT
In their proposed budget for 2017, D.C. Public Schools aims to focus on bolstering the city’s alternative high schools to support students who have fallen behind and ensure they graduate with employment opportunities, among several other new programs and initiatives. (WaPo, 2/16)

Alternative high schools — which focus on students who don’t have success in a typical school environment — offer small class sizes and flexible schedules, and they can be more effective for students who need to work during parts of the day or have small children.

The four-year graduation rate across all city public schools in 2014 was about 65 percent, and that figure was sometimes far lower in the city’s alternative high schools.

Related: WRAG is excited to roll out our 2016 Public Education Speaker Series on a variety of critical topics facing students today. Education Funders: Click here to learn more about the series and to registerPlease, note that these programs are open to grantmakers only.

REGION
 Opinion: President and CEO of The Eugene & Agnes E. Meyer Foundation (and WRAG Board member) Nicky Goren discusses the need for leaders in business, government, and the social profit sector to break down silos in order to work toward building a more equitable region. She also shares the three interconnected goals in Meyer’s new strategic plan. (WBJ, 2/12) – Subscription required

PHILANTHROPY
Exponent Philanthropy has released a new publication in partnership with The Philanthropic Initiative titled, “Ramping up Your Foundation: Key Considerations for Planning and Managing a Significant Increase in Giving.” The guide offers lessons on the experiences of a number of foundations that have undergone such transitions and tackles important considerations for foundation leadership in the areas of governance, staffing and operations, grantmaking and evaluation, investments, and tax and legal arenas. (Exponent Philanthropy, 2/2016)

–  The Community Foundation for Northern Virginia has released their 2014-2015 Annual Report, “A Year of Partnering for Greater Impact,” highlighting the ways in which they have developed partnerships in the past year to aide those in need, alleviate poverty, and advance the region through philanthropy. You can read the report here. (CFNoVa, 2/16)

FOOD 
Local culinary historian Michael Twitty is profiled in The Washington Post on his growing reputation as an expert on the deep roots of African American and Jewish cuisine. (WaPo, 2/12)

Related: In 2014, Michael Twitty kicked off WRAG’s Brightest Minds series with a discussion about building a more inclusive food movement. Check out this post that followed his talk, then take a look at the 2016 lineup. WRAG’s Brightest Minds programs are open to the public.

Opinion: Most parents strive to meet their children’s dietary needs, regardless of income level. But when faced with poverty, one researcher has found, the cost of serving a picky audience is often weighed much more heavily than in families with higher incomes. (NYT, 2/16)

ARTS | Staging a Comeback: How the Nonprofit Arts Sector Has Evolved since the Great Recession (NPQ, 2/9)

HOUSING | The Continued Rise of Renting (City Lab, 2/16)

JOBS | The Eugene & Agnes E. Meyer Foundation is hiring for the role of Communications Manager.


The Westminster Dog Show just happened. Take a look at some of the cutest canines around. Spoiler alert: CJ won it all.

– Ciara

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