Tonight, Scott will testify at the State Board of Education meeting in support of greater equity in science education for girls, low-income students, and students of color. His testimony will come as the State Board considers amendments to the city's waiver from the Elementary and Secondary Education Act that will change when schools will be accountable for teaching more rigorous science standards that were adopted last year.
Scott likens the need to increase access to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education to the discriminatory practice of permanent tracking, which was outlawed in D.C. in the case of Hobson v. Hansen 47 years ago.
From the testimony:
"While that overt system of permanent tracking was abolished in the 60’s, today, there is a de facto tracking system across the country at almost every juncture in the educational pipeline that denies girls, students of color, and low-income students the chance to thrive in the STEM fields.
By the age of 24, only 2% of Latinos and 3% of African Americans will have degrees in the natural sciences or engineering. Women are now the majority of college students, but only 20% of the degree recipients in fields like computer science and engineering.
So last year, when the State Board adopted the more rigorous Next Generation Science Standards and included them in our accountability system, it issued a major challenge to our city to close this gap locally.
Meeting this challenge will not be easy or quick. It will take the commitment of all stakeholders to implement, fund, and support the work of teachers in preparing our students to thrive."
A PDF of the testimony is linked here and the entirety of it is posted below.Read more
From John Riley's story.
The Victory Fund heaped praise on its chosen candidate in a press release.
“Scott Simpson has been a passionate advocate for District schools and understands the challenges they face,” Chuck Wolfe, the president and CEO of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund, said in a statement. “He brings the experience and dedication necessary to help the District of Columbia Public Schools deliver a more quality education that the children deserve.”
RSVP for the LeDroit Park / Shaw Neighborhood Meet and Greet on Tuesday, July 29th at Uprising Muffin Company
Hosted by (organizational affiliations noted for identification purposes only):
- Alice Speck, schools advocate
- Martín Garcia, vice president for legislative & political affairs of the Gertrude Stein Democratic Club
- Brian Footer, secretary of the LeDroit Park Civic Association
- Donnie Simpson Jr., Owner of Uprising Muffin Company
We got a big boost for our campaign today by earning the first major endorsement of the race! After a thorough analysis of my qualifications and campaign, the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund has endorsed me to represent Ward One on the State Board of Education.
The Victory Fund endorsement is a seal of approval, assuring supporters that I'm ready and able to effectively serve our students and that we're running an efficient, voter-focused campaign to get there.
But we can't do it without your help. There are several other candidates in the race and every dollar and every volunteer-hour counts to get the word out through door knocking, direct mail, and dialing.
Please donate, volunteer, or tell our network about our campaign to increase access to a quality education for all students, regardless of their life circumstances.
Click below to read the announcement from the Victory Fund.Read more
Throughout the summer, parents, educators, school advocates, and civic leaders will be hosting house parties across Ward One in support of Scott Simpson for Ward One Schools. RSVP to your neighborhood event below:
- Adams Morgan / Kalorama - Thursday, July 24th - Hosted by your neighbors Miasia Johnson, Chuck Fant & Michael Coventry, Christopher Murray, and Christian Teelucksingh & Katja Zastrow. Click here to RSVP.
- LeDroit Park / Shaw - Tuesday, July 29th - Hosted by schools advocate Alice Speck, Martín Garcia, vice president for legislative & political affairs of the Gertrude Stein Democratic Club, Brian Footer, secretary of the LeDroit Park Civic Association, and Donnie Simpson Jr., Owner of Uprising Muffin Company (organizational affiliations noted for identification purposes only). Click here to RSVP.
Thanks to all who attended or supported the Columbia Heights / Park View event on July 16th hosted by Beverley Wheeler, former executive director of the State Board of Education and two neighborhood Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners, Patrick Flynn and Morgan Corr.
The momentum is building behind the Scott Simpson for Ward One Schools candidacy. In the week since we've announced, the campaign has received overwhelming support from the community and coverage in several news outlets.
The Washington Informer published "Simpson Running for Ward 1 Board of Education Seat" and Metro Weekly published "Simpson To Run for State Board of Ed" which quoted former executive director of the State Board of Education, longtime Ward One civic activist, and the Simpson for Schools campaign chair, Beverley Wheeler, saying “Scott is exactly the advocate our city needs on the State Board of Education. He has energy, vision, and substance. He genuinely cares about improving neighborhood schools and understands the role of the SBOE.”
Earlier in the week, the Washington Blade broke the story, quoting civil and human rights leader Wade Henderson saying that Scott has the “the substance, skills and vision to help our schools meet their challenge of providing a quality education to every student.”
It's been a big week and the campaign is moving forward to improve schools for every family in Ward One.
Washington Blade: Simpson "wants to put his more than 10 years of experience on education and youth issues to work for the city’s schools."
The Washington Blade covered the announcement of Simpson's campaign, noting that Simpson "wants to put his more than 10 years of experience on education and youth issues to work for the city’s schools."
The article, written by Lou Chibbaro, quoted esteemed civil rights advocate Wade Henderson saying that Simpson has "proven to have the substance, skills and vision to help our schools meet their challenge of providing a quality education to every student.”
It also noted several endorsers of Simpson, saying that "Beverly Wheeler, former executive director of the State Board of Education and a longtime Ward 1 civic activist, is serving as chair of Simpson’s campaign committee. Others who have endorsed Simpson include David Mariner, executive director of the D.C. Center for the LGBT Community; and Todd Peterson, former SMYAL Board chair."
LeDROIT PARK -- Today, longtime Ward One resident and professional youth and education advocate Scott Simpson became the first person to declare his candidacy for the upcoming vacancy representing Ward One on D.C.'s State Board of Education (SBOE).
"Ward One families deserve a strong advocate on the State Board of Education who's rooted in the community and understands how education policy choices impact students in the classroom," said Simpson. "Throughout my career and for over a decade in D.C., I've been committed to expanding educational opportunities for all students. I'm ready to put those skills to work on behalf of Ward One families on the State Board of Education."
Simpson began his career working directly with students at a local youth center called SMYAL where he advocated for and with LGBT students to overcome the obstacles they faced without being fully supported at home, in school, or in the community. He now advocates for a range of education policies that improve the lives of students across the country at the nation’s largest civil rights coalition, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights.Read more