Message from Principal Hedlund

Dr. Phyllis HedlundPrincipal Newsletters

Principal's Newsletter

Dear Shepherd families,

I hope this email finds you well, and it was wonderful to speak with a number of you this week as you picked up your student’s belongings. If you would like to pick up your student’s belongings, please sign up here.

Thanks to Ms. Rottman, we have a draft schedule for virtual learning. Once Superintendent Jackson approves our schedule, I will share it with families. Please know that we carefully reviewed our notes from listening sessions and incorporated your feedback. Key concepts behind the schedule include:

  • All students have the same break and lunch times
  • Students receive instruction from 9-3
  • Wednesdays will look different with specials and time for family/student check-ins
  • The student experience will be more consistent from grade to grade and day to day and week to week

Also, find the grading policy for school year 2020-2021 attached. This document was just released yesterday.

SY 20-21 PreK_12_Grading Guidance.pdf

I also wanted to share the policy regarding learning/pandemic pods because I have received a number of questions about scheduling students. The focus for DCPS educators is on ensuring outstanding instruction every day for every student and ensuring equity of access through materials and technology. DCPS recognizes the challenges of learning at home and the various strategies families are using to support their child(ren) at home. Some of these strategies may include partnering with other families to form small groups for shared supervision or tutoring or through a parent cooperative model. DCPS cannot accommodate requests for teacher assignments, schedules, or other grouping organizations. DCPS leaders and teachers are unwavering in our dedication to equity and closing opportunity gaps. Therefore, students will continue to be scheduled in ways that promote equity, including some grouping that will be based on current academic needs, as well as whole group academic opportunities. That said, Shepherd teachers will be providing the same content regardless of homeroom.

Teachers will be modifying supply lists to accommodate virtual learning, and we will provide class lists the week of 8/24. Please keep the ideas for community building coming. Some staff and families suggested some great options last week, and we need our Shepherd stamp on this experience. We are a strong, vibrant community, and we want to remain so, even if we can’t be together in person. Thanks for your interest, involvement and willingness to help.

Stay safe,


Week of Aug 10 – pick up student’s belongings from school

Week of Aug 10 – DCPS Parent University sessions

Week of Aug 24 – Class lists and supply lists to be shared

Monday, Aug 31 – First Day of School (Virtual)