April 30, 2020
Dear Two Rivers Families,
We hope this letter finds you and your families well. As we head into the final stretch of this school
year, we are grappling with some big questions about how we end the year, how we think about
summer, and how we plan for next year. During our Spring Break, Mayor Bowser announced that
DCPS will end this school year at a distance on May 29th. DCPS anticipates starting next school year
early, but has yet to share a date. As we seek to make our own determination about when to end school
for Two Rivers students, we need your help.
The decision to end school early would be a heart wrenching one. Although the circumstances are
challenging, Two Rivers has been doing our best to sustain peer and staff connections, provide stability,
and deliver educational content through this pandemic. However, we know that families are under
extraordinary stress as they try to balance many demands and stressors with facilitating students'
distance learning at home.
Recently, many of you shared your feedback regarding how distance learning is going. While we are still
following up with families that we didn't hear from, among families sampled we learned the following:
● The majority of families responding (83%) felt their child's learning experience was at least a 3
out of 5, where 1 was "not good" and 5 was "fantastic" (41% rated it 4 or above).
● Sixty-five percent of families responding knew what their child should be learning.
● Seventy-nine percent felt supported by their teacher, principal, and other school staff.
● Eighty-four percent felt their child was receiving the right amount of work (59% answered 4 or
above, where 1 was "strongly disagree" and 5 was "strongly agree").
We're pleased that most families responding feel supported by Two Rivers and that their child's work
and learning is on the right track. We know how incredibly hard this is on students, parents, and
teachers, and are proud to be seeing some success, even under extremely challenging conditions.
Thanks to many of you who responded and wrote comments and suggestions for improvement--your
thoughts have been shared with school leaders.
As we continue navigating this pandemic and tackle the next set of decisions, we are cognizant that our
students and families are each experiencing this pandemic very differently. For that reason, we are again
reaching out for your direct input as we make these big decisions to ensure we know what you want in
this moment based on your experience.
To help us gather your feedback about the school calendar, please take five minutes to
complete this survey online at: bit.ly/TRfamilycalendar by 5:00pm on Sunday, May 3rd .
Please know that, though we are weighing complex budgetary, staffing, and operations challenges, our
priority continues to be the education of our students and the well-being of our community. We
continue to approach every decision with our mission and community in mind. We anticipate
convening leadership teams once we have your feedback, and then communicating a decision about the
end of the school year to you by the middle of next week.
We can't thank you enough for being crew with us at home as you support your child's growth in any
way you can---most importantly by loving and hugging your students tightly as only you can do while
we are all apart.
Aurora Steinle, Chief of Staff
Gail Williams, Director of Operations
Jeff Heyck-Williams, Director of Curriculum and Instruction
Jessica K. Wodatch, Executive Director
Kenneth McCants-Pearsall, Chief Academic Officer
Khizer Husain, Director of External Relations