Happy Black History Month! There has been nationwide controversy about how the contributions of Black Americans have and will be taught throughout K-12 education and beyond. In DC, there is robust discussion about what content will be included in the revised Social Studies Standards determined by the Office of the State Superintendent of Education. While these conversations may make some uncomfortable, it is important that we engage in them.
DC has local history we should boast about, and we are thankful to the residents, nonprofits, and federal and local agencies that work to preserve and educate us on the ways Black Washingtonians have advocated for our freedoms and our statehood. Black history is in the walls of John Phillip Sousa Middle School, where in 1950, 11-year-old Spottswood Bolling, Jr. tried and failed to attend the then all-white school. His parents and advocates would sue the District and that case became a companion case in the class action lawsuit known as Brown vs Board of Education (1954). Black history lives at 1411 W Street SE, where Frederick Douglass, a Civil Rights and abolition forefather lived. Douglass also fought for statehood, voting rights, and the education of DC residents. I could go on and on.
Understanding Black history is vital for all of us, and it also goes beyond what is taught in the classroom. We learn Black history by talking to our fellow Washingtonians, both native and transplanted. We learn Black history by traveling throughout all four quadrants of our city - observing and connecting with the hundreds of historical markers. While the month may be coming to an end, you can uplift this history all year long.
Today, Councilmember Henderson is focusing on commonsense education legislation and narrowing employment and wage gaps for residents.
Performance Oversight Updates
Performance Oversight season is in full swing. There are hearings taking place daily. To see the full schedule and to find Committee instructions on how to testify, click here.
The Committee on Health has been busy and has met multiple times since our last update:
Upcoming Hearings for the Committee on Health
Here is a list of upcoming hearing for the Committee on Health. If you would like to testify, feel free to sign-up using this link: https://bit.ly/HealthHearings. Please note we require all witnesses to sign-up at least 2 business day before the hearing, so we can ensure proper accommodations if necessary. We also accept written and voicemail testimony as part of the official record. The record closes 10 days after each hearing. Written statements can be sent to email@example.com. Voicemail testimony can be sent to (202)430-6046.
Budget Oversight hearings will begin on March 30th.
Performance oversight time has taught Team Henderson so much about the DC government agencies that we oversee. Here are some interesting facts that came out during some hearings:
Did You Know?
Christina in the Community
Howard University Hospital Last week, Councilmember Henderson visited Howard University Hospital. During the visit, she learned about the plans for the new hospital and its location, as well as the innovative research taking place throughout the medical campus.
School Within a School at Goding Last week, Councilmember Henderson also had the privilege of visiting Mr. Bonhomme’s 3rd grade class. Students are learning about how local government works. They were very knowledgeable and inquisitive. A few students even had great ideas about what changes should be made in the city, as well as a convincing argument for a shopping mall on H Street NE.
In Case You Missed It
A New DC Bill Could Require Insurance Companies to Cover Fertility Treatments. Washingtonian Magazine’s Keely Bastow spoke to Councilmember Henderson regarding her Expanding Access to Fertility Treatment Amendment Act of 2023.
Constituent Service Corner
Thank you for reading! Please stay in touch.
Chief of Staff
Deputy Chief of Staff
Constituent Services Director
Senior Policy Advisor
Councilmember At-Large Christina Henderson
1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Suite 402
Washington, D.C. 20004