M u s t a n g  N e w s l e t t e r

In This Issue
Dates to Remember

Mon-Fri, 5/4-8:
Teacher Appreciation Week

Tuesday, 5/5:
- Bike/Walk to School Day (8:15 am)
- SafeKids World Wide Event (9 am)

Wednesday, 5/6:
Awards Day - NEW DATE!
8:55 am (PS-PK); 9:30 am (K-2nd); 10:25 am (3rd-5th)

Thurs-Fri, 5/7-8:
3rd Grade PARCC EOY

Mon-Tues and Thurs, 5/11-12 and 5/14:
4th Grade PARCC EOY
Wed-Thurs, 5/13-14:
5th Grade PARCC EOY
Saturday, 5/16:
- Spring Gala at Wilson HS
- World Language Festival at Deal MS
Wednesday, 5/20:
- PTA Meeting
- Progress Reports Go Home
Thursday, 5/21:
Parent Academy: Preventing Summer Regression (8:15 am)
Friday, 5/22:
Mustang Bucks
Monday, 5/25:
Memorial Day - No School
Wednesday, 5/27:
Family Night at 6 pm (New Date!)
Friday, 5/29:
Field Day - All Day - Volunteers Needed!

. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Don't Forget!

Shop for Shepherd!

Did you know that many local stores like Giant and Safeway will donate a percentage of your purchases to Shepherd?

Visit the PTA website to find out how:   Shop for Shepherd!

Music for Mustangs!


Our talented new music teacher, Mr. Rudy Gonzalez, wants to give all Shepherd students the opportunity to play a musical instrument. To make that dream a reality, we need your help to purchase musical instruments!


The Shepherd PTA is sponsoring the first Shepherd crowd-funding effort. Click here (http://www.shepherd-elementary.org/support-us/music-for-mustangs/) to make a contribution to Music for Mustangs and see what prizes you can earn!


Don't forget to watch the Music for Mustangs video, featured on Shepherd's website!


. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Come One . . . 
           Come All . . . 

The Mustang is looking for a few good writers to serve as contributors to the The Student Scoop, a student-written column that will appear in every Mustang.  

Keep your schoolmates up to date on what's happening at Shepherd for a student's-eye view!

If you are interested, please send an email to 
Subject: Student Writer

We want your voice in the Mustang!

. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Content Submissions
The Mustang is the biweekly newsletter for Shepherd Elementary and community.  


We welcome community-relevant submissions of announcements (100-200 words) or articles (300-500 words) to add to the newsletter.  


The Mustang is published on the 1st and 3rd Mondays of each month; please submit items two weeks in advance in order to be included in the next Mustang.



The Mustang staff reserves the right to edit announcements and articles for space and content, and to decline submissions of inappropriate subject matter.  Advertisements and solicitations are not permitted.

Submit Content to Mustang

May 4, 2015 

Welcome to the Mustang e-Newsletter!  

Look for a new publication every 1st and 3rd Monday to stay connected with Shepherd school and community news. 

A Word from the Principal
Greetings Shepherd Families!

I hope that you are well.  It has been a very busy two weeks at Shepherd.  Thank you for supporting our events and helping make them a success. 

Farewell Assistant Principal Hunter (AP Hunter)
Please join me in saying farewell to Assistant Principal Hunter.  AP Hunter ' s official last day at Shepherd was Friday, April 24th.  However, she will be in this week to wrap up a few items.   As most of you know, AP Hunter came to us in January of 2014 as a Mary Jane Patterson Fellow, an internal leadership development program.   However, she was allowed to remain with us for the 2014-2015 and join our community as an AP.  AP Hunter has been a tremendous asset to the Shepherd family and will be missed greatly.    AP Hunter has been reassigned to Hendley Elementary School and will serve as interim principal for the remainder of this school year.   If you would like to acknowledge Ms. Hunter in any way; you may connect with her directly via email at angel.hunter@dc.gov.  Any tangible items may be dropped off in the main office.   We will personally give them to her when she is in the building or deliver them to her at Hendley.   The transition was sudden and unexpected so she had to quickly shift her priorities.  However, Ms. Hunter will be sharing her own sentiments at a later date.    Thank you Assistant Principal Hunter, you will be missed. 

Farewell Patterson Fellow Smith (Fellow Smith)
Please join me is saying farewell to Patterson Fellow Smith.  Fellow Smith joined the Shepherd community in January of 2015 as a member of the school leadership team.  Similar to AP Hunter, Fellow Smith completed his 2nd semester residency experience here at Shepherd Elementary.   Fellow Smiths ' last day will be Monday, May 4, 2015.   Mr. Smith has been appointed interim Principal at Roosevelt Senior High School for the remainder of this school.    Mr. Smith's attentiveness to detail, his rapport with students and families and his instructional knowledge were welcomed assets to the Shepherd family.  Thank you Fellow Smith, you will be missed.    

Celebrate Teacher Appreciation Week!
May 4-8, 2015 is Teacher Appreciation Week! However, at Shepherd we consider all of our staff members teachers who deserve recognition during this week.  Please join me in helping make this week special.
  • Monday, 5/4: Flowers for Your Teacher Day
  • Tuesday, 5/5: Naughty/Nice Day - Bring in a special healthy snack (nice) or sweet treat (naughty) for your teacher
  • Wednesday, 5/6: Specialist/Support Staff Day
  • Thursday, 5/7: Volunteer Your Time - Provide food and/or help with duty coverage while teachers enjoy a free Potluck lunch provided by parents.  Click here to sign-up.
  • Friday, 5/8: Day of Thanks - Make a card, write a note, or simply say, "Thank you!"

Have a great week!

Jamie Miles


Follow Us on Twitter



Global Road Safety for Children and 
Bike/Walk to School Day
In conjunction with
Global Road Safety Event
Mayor Bowser and the District of Columbia has joined the initiative to "Save Kids Lives" and has agreed to support the hosting of a Global Road Safety event in the District of Columbia with one contingency, the event is held at Shepherd Elementary! 

We kicked the event off on Wednesday, April 29th with a bike rodeo and bicycle helmet give away. Every student received a new bicycle helmet. If your student was absent they will receive a new helmet Tuesday. This event was sponsored by Safe Kids Worldwide in collaboration with Streetwise. On Tuesday, May 5, 2015 we will culminate with Shepherd's annual Bike/Walk to School Day.  SafeKids has also arranged for a bicycle valet company, Two Wheel Valet, to provide secure bicycle parking at Shepherd for Bike to School Day. Last year some parents had to take their children's bicycles home after riding with them to school because the racks were overflowing. That's not going to be a problem this year!

A Safe Kids assembly for 3rd through 5th grade students will also be hosted on Tuesday. The assembly will begin at 9:00 AM.  Attendees include Mayor Bowser, Kate Carr, president and CEO of Safe Kids Worldwide, Secretary of Transportation Anthony Fox, embassy representatives and many other notable individuals who are committed to promoting Kids Safety.  There will also be student speakers and proclamations.    All parents are encouraged to meet at Caplan Park and allow your student to walk or bike to school.  Students who arrive at school between 8:20 and 8:30 will join Principal Miles and walk one block from the school to meet families coming from Caplan Park.   We are excited about this amazing event.   

A special thanks to police officers from the Fourth District who will help manage traffic on the day of the event and may even help lead out our bike train from Marvin Caplan Park!

Another heartfelt thanks to Mr. Jim Elliott (parent of two Shepherd students) for working with us to help make this event a success!


The Budget Hearing:
Shepherd Elementary Renovations
Submitted by: Simon Messing
Dear Shepherd ES: 
Several parents did a fantastic job testifying on April 23rd in front of the DC education council in support of additional modernization funds for the completion of the wonderful renovations going on at our school.  

The testimony was well received but there are still challenges ahead in the present budget environment.  Parents brought up important points concerning the condition of the cafeteria, gym, and parking.  In particular, parents provide testimony on Shepherd's undersized cafeteria and lack of a full kitchen, which presents a number of issues we all know about.  For example, food is currently kept close to trash due to space constraints, consequently Shepherd has ongoing problems with rodents, and perhaps most importantly the current cafeteria and kitchen areas present difficulty for children to exit safely in the event of a fire or other emergency.

It's not too late for everyone to contribute to the effort! If you did not attend, don't worry . . . you have until May 7th to submit written testimony into the record! Testimony can either be emailed to aadenariwo@dccouncil.us (reference hearing date and committee in subject line) or mailed to the Committee on Education Council of the District of Columbia, Suite 116 of the John A. Wilson building, 1350 Pennsylvania Avneue, N.W., Washington, DC 20004.


For more information:


Shepherd Modernization Fact Sheet


For parent letter templates and contact information, please see the Shepherd Home Page at: http://www.shepherd-elementary.org/


Save the Date: MAY 16, 2015
Shepherd's Spring Gala and Auction
Dust off your dancing shoes; this year's PTA Gala and Auction has a salsa theme.  No, not that spicy condiment -we're talking music!  Save the date and plan to join us for a very special evening. 

This just added . . .

Free child care on gala night at Shepherd Elementary School, provided by Star Achievers!

To purchase tickets online, please visit: http://shepherd-elementary.maestroweb.com

For more information about the Gala, please see: 

Shepherd parents, teachers, alumni, neighbors, and family members - in fact, anyone interested in supporting our school and having a great time.  But, leave the kids at home; this event is adults only.

Shepherd ' s biggest fundraising event of the year.  The gala features dinner, entertainment, silent and live auctions and this year, courtesy of our wonderful music teacher
Mr. Gonzalez and his salsa band ... music!

Saturday, May 16, 2015 at 6:30 p.m.

In the beautiful atrium at Wilson Senior High School.

The PTA raises money to help fund some of those "extras"not covered by the school' s annual budget and this is your chance to help us do that.  Plus, the event is a wonderful opportunity to socialize with parents, staff, and members of the community.

How can I participate?

By planning to attend: We ha ve dropped ticket prices this year to $35, to make it more affordable for more families. 

By volunteering to help: contact the PTA at
info@shepherd-elementary.org if interested. 

By donating or soliciting auction items: we ' ll be sending out more information on that soon.


Save the Date: 
Fifth Grade Exhibition, 6/3/2015
The Fifth graders are well into the preparation for their Exhibition scheduled June 3, 2015.  The Exhibition is an important part of the students'   journey in the Primary Years Programme.  In the final year of the programme, students must undertake a collaborative inquiry project that involves them identifying, investigating and offering solutions (action) to real-life issues or problems. The Exhibition offers students the opportunity to demonstrate independence and responsibility for their own learning.

This year our Fifth Grade Exhibition is centered on the trans-disciplinary theme of Sharing the Planet. This theme focuses on an inquiry into the rights and responsibilities in the struggle to share finite resources with other people and with other living things; on communities and the relationships within and between them; on access to equal opportunities; and on peace and conflict resolution. The issues that students have selected to inquire about are: Homelessness & Poverty; Viable Resources; Global Awareness; Access to Water; Energy Resources; and School Boundaries. Please mark your calendar  and come out to learn more about why these issues are important to our Fifth Grade students and the actions they will take in trying to make a difference.

News and Announcements
Shepherd Library Update

Students can now check out eBooks through our library.

Here's how:
  1. Go to https://dcps.follettdestiny.com/ this link will take you to the home screen for all DCPS schools;
  2. Scroll down and click on Shepherd ES;
  3. Under Students, click on eBooks; and
  4. To access eBooks, use your Student ID for the Username and student's birthdate as the Password (format MMDDYY).

If you have any questions on how to access the eBooks, stop by the library after school or email Ms. Tiffany at christina.tiffany@dc.gov Happy Reading!


Meet the Author: 

Brian Selznick Visits DC Public Library

Saturday May 9, 2015 at 2 p.m.


Martin Luther King Junior Memorial Library hosts award-winning children's author and illustrator Brian Selznick famous for books such as Wonderstruck, The Inventions of Hugo Cabret, and When Marian Sang. Children may ask questions of Selznick during the first portion of the program. They will then have a chance to meet him and have up to four books signed. Books may be purchased onsite or brought from home but they are not required to attend the free event. This will be a great time to explore the interactive exhibit, "Building Wonder, Designing Dreams: The Bookmaking of Brian Selznick," and to try out a variety of activities related to Selznick's books.  


Call DC Public Library at 202-727-1248 for more information. 


IB PYP Update at Shepherd

Welcome to May and finally spring weather! This Month ' s Learner Profile is Communicator. As a Communicator, you understand and express ideas and information in more than one language. You use more than one mode of communication and you enjoy collaborating with others.

Cinco de Mayo, Spanish for the "Fifth of May", is Tuesday, May 5th.  Cinco de Mayo is a celebration of the courage the Mexican army showed during the Battle of Puebla against France. The battle resulted in a victory over France in 1862. In the United States, May 5th has evolved over the years into a celebration of Mexican culture and heritage particularly in areas with a large population of Mexican-Americans. The celebration includes traditional Mexican foods like tacos and mole poblano, parades, mariachi music performances and street festivals. Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Program of Inquiry

This week, we begin our last Unit of Inquiry-Unit 6 which will continue until June 5th. The Inquiry for each grade level is as follows:
  • Pre Kindergarten - Sharing the Planet - Staying Alive
  • Kindergarten - How We Express Ourselves - Visually Speaking
  • First Grade - How We Organize Ourselves - Marketplace
  • Second Grade - How We Organize Ourselves - Notable People
  • Third Grade - Who We Are - Healthy Bodies
  • Fourth Grade - Sharing the Planet - Do the Right Thing
  • Fifth Grade - Who We Are - What a character?

Listening, speaking, reading, writing and non-verbal cues are all ways of communication.


How to become a better communicator?

  • Practice attentive listening
  • Speak clearly at all times
  • Read a variety of materials
  • Write about things you observe on a daily basis
  • Be conscious of facial gestures and visual cues

Have a great week!

Sandra Hart

IB Coordinator

Shepherd Elementary | (202) 576-6140 | mustangshepherd2@gmail.com 
7800 14th Street NW
Washington, DC 20012