Port City Notebook

News, views and random observations around Alexandria

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News You Can Use

Provide Input: Chinquapin Park Recreation Center & Aquatics Facility Expansion There’s still time this week to share your thoughts about the best design for a new 50-meter indoor pool at the Chinquapin Park Recreation Center and Aquatics Facility. AlexEngage—a new online forum and a tool of the What’s Next Alexandria civic engagement initiative—allows you to express your opinion to decision-makers, and also to view what other residents are saying. Comments will be […]

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A Back-to-School Reading List

The Port City Notebook took an unexpected hiatus this summer, but will be back publishing on a regular basis very soon. Thank you for your continued interest! Meanwhile, I’ve collected a few items to highlight as the end of summer draws near and the start of the new school year approaches: Teens and Money My good friend Janet Bodnar, editor of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance Magazine and a leading authority on […]

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Lazy Days of Summer Reading

Ever since I was a kid, I have loved libraries—the way they smell, the way they sound, and the way they look and feel. It’s no surprise, then, that I have loved taking my own children to the library, and that has always been part of our summer routine. It’s the one time of the year when we don’t have to rush in and rush out. We can stay as […]

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What is the ACPS Curriculum and Why Does it Matter?

One of the strengths of ACPS—its comprehensive written curriculum for all courses and subjects in all grades—is also one of its best-kept secrets. Even among parents who know of its existence, there is a lot of confusion about it. First, some background: Prior to 2010, ACPS had no fully-developed written curriculum. The school division had Standards of Learning (SOL) Pacing Guides for teachers to use to gauge their progress in […]

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In the News

Given our schools’ laser-like focus on standardized testing and meeting ever-more stringent benchmarks, it’s only natural to believe that public education has become a giant assembly line and students are just a commodity. Michael Alison Chandler’s article in The Washington Post a week ago, “Driven to Their Diplomas,” shows why that doesn’t have to be the case. She writes about the extraordinary lengths that the staff at T.C. Williams High […]

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One Step Closer to a 50-Meter Pool at Chinquapin

The first phase of the Chinquapin Swim Center feasibility study—to determine if a 50-meter competition pool can be accommodated on the Chinquapin site—has been completed by the consulting group and the answer is “Yes!”  In fact, in the Task 1A Report, the consultants present six different schemes that have varying sets of pros and cons. Moreover, based on the preliminary analysis, the consultants indicated that the project can be done […]

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News You Can Use

Parents are heading into that time of the school-year when calendars are chock full of plays, concerts, games, matches, meets, meetings, programs, SOLs, AP exams and so on. Let me throw a couple more dates into the mix: On Wednesday, May 14, Delegate Rob Krupicka will be the guest speaker at the Alexandria PTA Council meeting in the Media Center at the Minnie Howard campus of T.C. Williams High School […]

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