Message from Principal Hedlund

Dr. Phyllis HedlundPrincipal Newsletters

Principal's Newsletter

Last night’s community meeting was well attended. Questions were sensible yet urgent. We have outstanding parent advocates working on our students’ behalf. The community center was the focus of the meeting, but time was also spent on lead contamination on DC playgrounds. You can find DPR’s presentation here. Construction will start in mid-October, and there are sure to be bumps along the way for the community, government agencies and construction firm. I will give you weekly updates on the construction and more frequent ones if conditions demand them. In the end, however, we will have a gorgeous new gymnasium, cafeteria and kitchen to enjoy. I feel confident it will be well worth the wait.

This week we nearly had a tragedy when a driver blinded by the morning sun as they traveled on 14th Street almost struck one of our Pre-K 3 students. The boy’s father literally had to pull him out of the car’s path, and the family was in the crosswalk at the time of the incident. Although we are all busy with countless responsibilities, we need to take the time to travel safely, especially in the vicinity of our school. We all know that lives can be changed dramatically in an instant. Please use the crosswalks, park in legal spaces, drive the speed limit or below and be vigilant at all times.

Picture Day is Friday, October 4th, and Parent Teacher Conferences will be on Friday, October 11th. Please remember that there will be no school for students that day. Madame Gadie and Mr. Hernandez will host a World Language Information Session on Friday, October 4th from 8:00-8:40 am in the Library. They will provide an overview of the curriculum and objectives for language instruction at Shepherd.

Enjoy another beautiful fall weekend! I enjoy every moment I spend with your children. They are kind and generous. I had a student offer me his donut the other day just because I said it looked good. I saw a crowd of 1st grade boys rush over to console a boy who was near tears on the playground the other day. I observed students affirming one another when they answered in class. I watched students practice the compliment greeting, which is when you greet someone and say something nice to them. How fortunate I am to be here.



General Announcements

Celebrations: Please inform your child’s classroom teacher if you are bringing in treats for birthdays celebrations. Depending on the time of day, teachers will instruct you where celebrations will be held. If you are bring treats during students’ lunch time, the Healthy Schools Act requires our staff to ensure that students eat their lunch from home or their hot lunch from school first before enjoying special treats for celebrations. Thank you for helping us to ensure our students eat a healthy lunch each day.

Shepherd’s First Ever Hispanic Heritage Bowl: Our Hispanic Heritage History Bowl is upon us! The bowl is for students in grades 2nd-5th. Please encourage students to sign up and obtain study packets. The date of the championship bowl will be communicated soon. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to reach out to Jamila Romero or Mrs. Zepeda,

Before and After School Clubs for Students: Several of our staff members are offering special programming for our students this year. Please check out these options, with more to come soon:

Kindness Club

Is your child interested in changing our school and community by being a part of The Kindness Club at Shepherd? We will be recognizing acts of kindness at Shepherd, participating in The Great Kindness Challenge, giving back to those in need, and more! Kindness Club is for students in grades K-5 and begins the week of September 30. Kindness Club will meet in Mrs. Zepeda’s room (A101).

Kindergarten – 2nd Grade: Tuesdays from 3:30 – 4:30

3rd Grade – 5th Grade: Thursdays from 3:30 – 4:30

If you are interested, please fill out the following google survey. If you have any questions, please contact Mrs. Zepeda via email at [email protected]

Yearbook Club

We are looking for 6-8 self-motived and responsible students who are creative thinkers, risk-takers, and enthusiastic about Shepherd Elementary School. Using computers and digital cameras, Year Book Club members will have the opportunity to learn how to use our year book making software, take & upload digital pictures, and apply basic design/layout techniques to create a book of memories for all to enjoy.

The Year Book Club will only meet on the following dates, 3:20 – 4:20 p.m.:

October 16, 2019

November 20, 2019

December 18, 2019

January 15, 2020

February 19, 2020

March 18, 2020

April 15, 2020

May 20, 2020

If you are interested, please contact Mrs. Holt by Friday, October 4, 2019.

Mustang Chorus

3rd-5th Graders

Weekly on Tuesday mornings 8:00-8:30

Starting: October 1st, 2019

Open to all 3rd – 5th grade students interested

Located in the music room

Culture Club

Madame Gadie and Ms. Johnson will lead Culture Club for students in 2nd through 5th grades. Activities will include:

Playing geography and culture games
Art and craft activities
Tasting different foods from countries studied
Participating in special presentations
First meeting: Friday, October 4th 3:30-4:00 PM in Madame Gadie’s Room

Shepherd Tutoring Program begins on September 22nd, 2019, and will be held every Sunday from 5-6PM at Tifereth Israel Congregation (7701 16th St NW between Juniper and Jonquil – enter on Juniper)

Bullying Prevention Month

October is Bullying Prevention Month. All month, students will learn what bullying means and how we can prevent it. They will also learn the different roles in bullying: the bully, the victim, the bystander, and the ally. Most importantly, students will learn strategies for being assertive to students who bully and how to report bullying to adults.


  • “Secret Life of Pets 2” Movie Night – Fri, Sept 27 at 6:30 pm in the multipurpose room
  • Wednesday, October 2nd – Walk to School Day
  • Friday, October 4th – Picture Day and World Language Information Session on Friday, October 4th from 8:00-8:40 am in the Library with Madame Gadie and Mr. Hernandez
  • Monday, October 7th – Ward 3 Education Meeting at Hearst Elem
  • Friday, October 11th – Parent/Teacher Conferences, no school for students
  • October 15-19th – Book Fair
  • Wednesday, October 16th – LSAT meeting – 4:30 pm-
  • Wednesday, October 16th – PTA meeting – 6:30 pm
  • Friday, October 18th – All School Morning Meeting – 8:40 am
  • Saturday, October 19th – Fall Fest – 12-4 pm
  • Wednesday, October 23rd – Open House for Prospective Parents – 9-10 am
  • Sunday, October 27th – Family Photo Shoot PTA Fundraiser
  • Tuesday, October 29th – Blue 44 Restaurant Night
  • Thursday, October 31st – SPCA Halloween Parade (lower field)