Color block logo of Deal Alice Deal Weekly Bulletin

November 12, 2007
"Think globally. Listen compassionately. Act Inclusively."
Thought for the week:

"A man's errors are his portals of discovery."

      -- James Joyce      

Bell Schedule
Monday - Bell I
Tuesday - Bell I
Wednesday - Bell I
Thursday - Bell I
Friday - Bell I
November 14, 2007
Welcome to
Deal Open House
& Deal Night! 

Come see us in action @ our Open House!
Hours: 9am - 3pm

Come learn about us @ Deal Night!

6:30 - 8pm

See you soon!
[email protected] Join Our List
Join Our Mailing List
Congratulations to the "Students of the Month!"
Congratulations to our first "Students of the Month!"

Two students from each team were chosen by their teachers. The teachers were asked to select students who are doing the right thing!  We are looking for students who are completing their homework and classwork, showing improvement, arriving at school on time, and demonstrating good citizenship. 

Their pictures are displayed in the front lobby of the school - come check them out!
We love to see our students succeed!
Team Aztecs
Jena Wade
Christopher Coleman
Green Scholars
Sarah Ulstrup
Joshua Leeper

Team Olympians
Brejanee Gray Williams
Eli Ferster
Jade Woodridge
George Nwanze
Team Braveheart
Mariama Taif-Suitu
Reid Rumelt
Team Odyssey
Kimiko Matsuda-Lawrence
David Umana


Ms. Ina Coleman!!

Ms. Ina Coleman is our new cafeteria manager! 

"I just want to say 'Hello!' and let everyone know that I am here to address any concerns or questions that anyone might have.  I know parents may have questions regarding the lunch application status - I can help with that."


"I would also like to extend an invitation to faculty and staff to join us in the cafeteria on November 14th for the Thanksgiving luncheon.  For $2.75, the menu will feature turkey and dressing, ham, cornbread, greens, macaroni and cheese, sweet potatoes and peach cobbler.  Of course students will also get to enjoy this feast! Hope to see you on the 14th!"

Upcoming Activities

.  November 12th - Veterans Day Holiday

.   November 13th - AMC-8 math test

        Feeder school outreach visit to Janney ES 7pm

.    November 14th -
Deal Open House #1 - 9-3pm

     Deal Night, school tours @ 6:30, information program from 6:50 - 8 pm

.   November 15th - Faculty meeting

       DC BAS reading & math test

.  November 17th - NHD workshop @ the National Archives 10-2pm

.   November 19th - High school planning for Team Odyssey during pd 6 & 7.

.  November 20th - Feeder school outreach visit to Murch ES 6:30pm

.  November 21st - Thanksgiving Assembly

.  November 22nd-23rd - Thanksgiving Holiday.

.  November 27th - Feeder school outreach visit to Lafayette ES 6:30pm

.  November 30th - Mid-Advisory progress reports sent home

       Team Odyssey - DC Trolley Tour trip

.  December 4th - Department Chair meeting 3:30pm

.  December 6th -

    Geography Bee competition

    High School Fair, 6:30 pm

.  December 7th - Parent-Teacher conference day.  No school for students.

.  December 11th - Deal Open House #2

        Feeder school outreach visit to Eaton ES 6pm

.  December 13th - Winter Concert, 7 pm

.  December 14th - LSRT meeting, 7:30 am

.  December 20th - Faculty mtg

.  December 21st - Student Council Winter Assembly

.  December 24th -  Winter Break begins

.  January 2nd - teachers return to school

.  January 7th - students return to school

.  January 18th  - End of 2nd adivsory

.  January 21st -  Martin Luther King, Jr., Holiday

.  January 25th - 12:15 dismissal

Message from Principal Kim

photo of Principal Kim
I hope everyone enjoyed the long weekend!

When everyone returns on Tuesday, we will have another full week ahead!

On Tuesday evening, I am visiting Janney ES  to inform Janney parents and students about our school.  This is a part of the feeder school outreach visits that I make each year to all interested schools.  It is an informal session where I provide a short informational presentation to interested families about Deal's programming.  The highlight of these visits is when the audience hears first-hand experiences from current Deal students and parents.  So if you are a current or former Janney parent and can be at the meeting to reconnect with your old friends and talk to them about your Deal insights, please come!

In the same spirit of sharing news about all the great things happening at Deal, we are hosting both Deal Open House Day and Deal Night this Wednesday!  Open House is from 9-3pm & Deal Night begins @ 6:30pm.  Open House provides an opportunity for prospective and current Deal families to visit classes and see us in action!  The purpose of Deal Night is to open our school to families that cannot join us during the day - they can come to school at 6:30, tour the building, and join us at 6:50 for a more formal informational session in the auditorium.  Each of the departments and teams will be represented.

We are so proud of the work that is happening at Deal every day.  Please tell your friends and neighbors to come check us out!

Principal Kim
Alice Deal Middle School

Weekly Bulletin

Still Collecting Deal Directory Forms!
  • We are still missing many forms.  HR teachers are asked to collect directory forms!  The PTA will go to press in a week!

Getting Ready For High School

  • Ms. Hernandez will be meeting with each of the 8th graders by team to talk about getting ready for high school applications.  Team Odyssey students and their teachers will be the first group to meet with Ms. Hernandez in the auditorium on Monday, November 19th during 6th and 7th period.  Stay tuned - the sessions for team Braveheart and Olympians will be announced in the near future!

No Computer? No Library? NO PROBLEM!

  • If you need access to a computer, the Internet, books, or magazines for your science fair project, National History Fair project, or for any other class work or school work, please stop by RM 205B and see Ms. Wells for details on how you can participate in our newest academic extracurricular activity: study hall at Wilson High School!  Ms. Wells will bring 15 students across the path to Wilson's library twice a week - Tuesdays and Thursdays - to use their resources for an hour (3:30pm - 4:30pm) while we are under construction here at Deal!

All students are invited to attend on a first come, first serve basis!  Sign up after school in RM 205B.  You MUST bring your DCPS Student ID number (ask a teacher if you don't know yours!).  This begins Tuesday.

Tuesday - Mix It Up At Lunch!
  1. Just for today, at the beginning of the lunch period, 7th and 8th graders should report to the Auditorium rather than the cafeteria.
  2. Students will be assigned new lunch mates for the day - instead of sitting where you usually sit, for today, you will sit with other people who were born in the same month as you!
  3. The cafeteria will serve some of the students' favorite foods ... chili dogs, cheeseburgers, fries, lemon cake.
  4. The table discussions will center around similarities and differences about teenage interests such as books, movies, sports, extracurricular activities, and friends.  Students can make suggestions about how we can increase tolerance and diversity at Deal.  Student leaders from the Peer Mediators and Student Council will get the conversation started at the tables!
Mix It Up is a project started by the Southern Poverty Law Center.  Mix It Up seeks to break down the barriers between students, improve inter-group relations, and create inclusive communities where there are fewer misunderstandings that can lead to conflict.  Mix It Up provides tools, resources, and ideas to help youth and their adult allies participate in boundary-crossing student projects.  This project is being spearheaded by the Peer Mediators and Student Council.

Deal participates in the American Mathematics Competition - 8 (AMC-8) this Tuesday!
  • The AMC-8 is a 25-question, 40-minute, multiple choice examination in middle school mathematics designed to promote the development and enhancement of problem-solving skills.  The examination provides an opportunity to apply the concepts taught at the middle school level to problems which not only range from easy to difficult but also cover a wide range of applications.  Additional purposes of the AMC-8 are to promote excitement, enthusiasm, and positive attitudes towards mathematics and to stimulate interest in continuing the study of mathematics beyond the minimum required for high school graduation. 


  1. Report to Period I but leave your textbooks in your locker.
  2. Have with you the following items: two Number 2 pencils and a calculator (either graphing or scientific).
  3. Upon announcement, report to the cafeteria.
  4. The test will last for periods one and two.  Good luck & have fun!

Open House & Deal Night on Wednesday

  • Although every day is open house at Deal, we are inviting the city to come check us out on Wednesday, November 14th!  If you know anyone who is interested in sending their children to Deal or may have questions, encourage them to come see us in action!  Open house hours:  9am - 3pm.
  • Also on Wednesday, at 6:30pm, we open our school again with Deal Night.  This is a great information session about Deal open to all current and future families.
  • Please help spread the news to all families and neighborhoods that Deal is the place to be!
Volleyball Playoffs!!!
  • The girls volleyball playoffs will take place next week.  On Monday, we host a doubleheader.  In the first match, Lincoln plays Hart.  In the second match, our Lady Vikings take on Kelly Miller.  The winners of these games will play each other on Tuesday at Kelly Miller.  The winner of that game will play for the championship at Lincoln.  We would like to see all of students and staff at next Monday's game to support our team.  Go Vikings!!

Girl's Basketball Try-Outs

  • The girl's basketball team tryouts will be held this week on Wednesday from 3:30 -4:45pm and next week on Monday, November 19.  All girls must bring a copy of their report card for first advisory and a signed permission slip.

Boy's Basketball Try-Outs

  • The boy's basketball team try-outs will continue this week on Friday from 3:30-5:00pm and next week on Tuesday, November 20.  All boys must have a signed permission slip and a copy of their report card in order to try out.
Indoor Track
  • All Indoor Track paperwork is due on Wednesday.  If the paperwork is not complete, you will not be eligible for the team.  Check the wall outside of Mr. Geremia's classroom to see if you are eligible.  Any questions, see Coach Geremia. 

Student Council Collects Non-perishable Foods

  • There are very few days left to bring in donations for the annual Student Council Non-Perishable Foods Drive.  Your contributions of canned goods, staples like rice, sugar,flour, and cornmeal, boxes of cereal and pasta, or jars of peanut butter and pasta sauce will help stock the cupboards of some of our community's hungriest residents.

Every section should have a decorated cardboard box ready to receive Deal's generous gifts.  The boxes will be presented at next week's Thanksgiving Assembly and collected by the Food and Friends Food Bank project in NE DC.

National History Workshop for Students and Parents at the National Archives on Saturday

  • Students still have time to register for the special NHD workshop on Saturday to learn more about using the National Archives for research.  All students must be accompanied by an adult chaperone and both student and chaperone need a photo ID to pass through security at the Archives.  The one-hour workshops begin at 10:00am and continue until 2:00pm.  Contact Missy McNatt at to register.

WTU General Meeting in RM 105 @ 3:30 p.m.
  • Agenda:  To update union information and address concerns.

Change to Meeting Schedule for Morning Block

  • Attention:  Wednesday mornings will no longer be used solely for departmental meetings.  We will now observe the following rotation:
1st Wednesday of the month - Department Meetings
2nd Wednesday of the month - Individual planning
3rd Wednesday of the month - Committee Meeting
4th Wednesday of the month - Individual Planning
This Wednesday is the 2nd Wednesday in November.  Therefore, we will have individual planning time.

GenevaLogic Foundation Initiative

  • The GenevaLogic Foundation supports initiatives that further the innovative use of technology to improve teaching and learning and provides programs and grants to provide educators with resources and technology products to advance education.

            Maximum Award: $10,000 value
            Eligibility: accredited, not-for-profit K-12 schools
            Deadline: December 28, 2007
   Can Deliver Valuable Resources to Your Classrooms This Fall

  • is a nonprofit website where district and charter school teachers can submit their classroom resource needs - from basic learning materials like books, calculators and beakers to cutting-edge technologies like laptops and LCD projectors. At, individuals from across the country are able to browse the needs in your classrooms and fund the requests they find most compelling.

We've channeled over $14.5 million in resources to classrooms in major cities across the country since our launch in 2000. To date in Washington, DC, we've delivered $420,000 in supplies, and are committed to deliver $125,000 to DC classrooms this year alone. The process is easy and simple.


Make sure your requests are seen - challenge your teachers to submit up to 3 requests TODAY at  

If you have any questions about how you get started, please contact Teacher Engagement Manager Melanie Duppins at .

Before & After School Activities This Week
Monday - AM
  •  Holiday
Monday - PM
  • Holiday

Tuesday - AM

  • Concert Choir @ 7:45 a.m.
  • Jazz Band @ 7:45 a.m.

Tuesday - PM

  • Show Choir @ 3:30 p.m. - 4:15 p.m. RM 115
  • Fencing Club RM 215
  • Student Council - Cafeteria
  • Cheerleading practice
  • Volleyball - Deal VS Kelly Miller @ Deal
  • Drumline 3:25 p.m. - 4:15 p.m.
  • Indoor Track Practice 3:30 p.m. - 5:00 RM B101
  • Library time @ Wilson with Ms. Wells 3:30 - 4:30 p.m.

Wednesday - AM

  • Full Concert Choir @ 7:45 a.m. RM 115
  • Concert Band 7:45 a.m.

Wednesday - PM

  • Mathcounts RM 216
  • Volleyball Playoffs @ Kelly Miller 4:30 p.m.
  • Indoor Track Practice RM B101
  • Girls Basketball Tryouts 3:30 -4:45 p.m.

Thursday - AM

  • Concert Choir 7:45 a.m. 
  • Jazz Band 7:45 a.m.

Thursday - PM

  • Cheerleading practice
  • Faculty Meeting
  • Volleyball Championships @ Lincoln 4:30 p.m.
  • Library time @ Wilson with Ms. Wells 3:30 - 4:30 p.m.

Friday - AM

Friday - PM

  • Boys Basketball Tryouts 3:30 - 5 p.m.
  • Concerned Young Black Men meeting with Mr. Harris 3:15 - 4:15 p.m.

As always, students should only be at school with parent permission!

Food for thought ... Aiming for the Middle

A new International Baccalaureate program is raising the game in middle school

By Jay Mathews

Sunday, November 4, 2007; Page W20

The letter published in the Reston Connection four years ago said the program at Langston Hughes Middle School promoted "socialism, disarmament, radical environmentalism, and moral relativism, while attempting to undermine Christian religious values and national sovereignty."

The Middle Years Program, part of the International Baccalaureate system, was just getting started at Langston Hughes, and it wasn't the first time an IB program had been slapped around in Fairfax County. W.T. Woodson High School had thrown out its IB courses in 1999, in part because some parents and teachers thought they were too global and played down American history. Syndicated columnist Thomas Sowell reported in 2004 that Fairfax parents were in revolt against IB. It was an exaggeration, but there was enough of a fight to raise concern about the program's future in the Washington area's biggest school district.

Some parents and teachers at Langston Hughes, and next door at South Lakes High School, where the MYP continued for ninth- and 10th-graders, distrusted a program invented in Switzerland and alien to what they remembered of their own more traditional middle school days. Other parents and teachers thought the MYP was wonderfully rigorous, with its commitment to global awareness, foreign languages and writing. The differences of opinion appeared to reflect tension between Americans who thought the country was too soft and those who thought the country was too dumb.

Who won? A visit to Langston Hughes this fall reveals that the people favoring smarter students have beaten those fearing foreign influence to an apparently invisible pulp. It is hard to find anyone who even remembers when the school's unusual curriculum was considered a threat to American values. Instead, past and present Langston Hughes parents are greeting an unexpected jump in SAT scores at South Lakes -- the biggest this year in Fairfax County -- as proof that they were right to go with the MYP, perhaps the most challenging middle school program in America for non-magnet schools.

It can't be proved that the MYP helped SAT scores go up. But the fact that all Langston Hughes students are in the MYP, and that the MYP emphasizes skills tested on the SAT, is enough for many parents. Lou Ann Armstrong, who has had two children go through Langston Hughes, says she loves how the program has enhanced her children's critical-thinking ability. Her daughter Sophia, now a South Lakes junior, agrees that the MYP "definitely made us think, and not through rote knowledge, but making connections to the rest of the world."

The Middle Years Program differs from standard middle school fare in several ways. It is a systematic way of teaching that links subjects, relates in-school learning to the outside world and develops an appreciation of world cultures. Writing is stressed in all courses. Seventy-five percent of Langston Hughes students -- all except those needing remedial English -- take foreign languages, compared with the 25 to 45 percent in Fairfax County middle schools without the MYP.

James Albright and Janet Croon, the teachers who run the IBMYP program at Langston Hughes and South Lakes, say their program still gets lots of criticism -- not from parents but from the MYP and IB system itself. Each year, they and their teachers must submit sample student work and grades to MYP moderators and wait anxiously to be told what they are doing wrong.

This happens to MYP teachers all over the world. The program for seventh- through 10th-graders does not have the five-hour exams, written and graded by outside experts, that the IB diploma program for 11th- and 12th-graders has. But it insists on critiquing the projects and tests that MYP teachers are giving, and telling them each year in great detail where they need to get tough.

This year, the moderators informed MYP teachers at Langston Hughes and South Lakes, who work together in the program, that one task they submitted was "an interesting but superficial assignment." As a result, the moderators reduced the number of points even the best students could get for that assignment. One of the South Lakes MYP essay tests was panned. A failure to indicate how another task was assessed brought sharp comment. The moderators were also ill-tempered about the Langston Hughes and South Lakes MYP teachers' submission of group work and work based on oral presentations, which made it difficult to assess individual students. The process can be painful, Croon said, but it "guides teachers toward an international standard of rigor."

American middle schools have suffered from wavering standards and stagnant achievement in the past three decades. As everyone knows, middle school grades do not usually count for college, so even parents don't worry about them much. Many middle school educators embrace the idea that this age group should be allowed to sample a number of skills and concepts, but not be required to master them.

That makes the MYP a very provocative addition to American public education. It is expensive, particularly with the optional moderators, about $104,000 a year, or $65 per MYP student at Langston Hughes/South Lakes, all paid for by the school district. Montgomery, Prince William and Arlington counties also have the MYP in some schools; Prince George's will have some MYP schools next year; and other local districts are considering the MYP. Even parents worried about the program's foreign origins likely will be impressed with the fact that the other two Fairfax County high schools with the biggest SAT gains this year were Mount Vernon, whose students come from Whitman Middle School, and J.E.B. Stuart, whose students come from Glasgow Middle School. Both of them have the Middle Years Program.

Jay Mathews covers schools for The Post. He can be reached at [email protected]