Watkins modernization community meeting - Nov 17

Watkins is undergoing a multiyear modernization project to improve the physical structure of the building and improve the educational experience for Watkins staff and students. This has been a ongoing process, which has been conducted jointly between the the DC government and multiple stakeholders, including the School Improvement Team (SIT), which including staff, teachers, and parents. An important recent development involves potentially relocating Watkins students for a period of time during the construction process, known as a "swing" scenario.

DCPS is holding a meeting to engage the broader community on November 17th at 6pm at Watkins Elementary (420 12th St, SE). They will discuss the developments since last spring, when the last community meeting was held. If you're interested in learning more or weighing in, please attend on the 17th.

Watkins garden work day this Saturday

Watkins Elementary, at 12th and E St. SE, has a fantastic, award-winning garden, which provides a living (and edible!) laboratory for Watkins students. The Watkins garden master gardener, Barbara Percival, along with students and families, maintain the garden day-to-day. This Saturday, June 13th, the Watkins garden invites the community to come out and help tend the garden during the Watkins garden work day. If you're a fan of the garden, want to learn about the garden, or just like getting your hands dirty, come out to Watkins from 10am to 1pm.

If you'd like to learn more or if you have questions, please contact Barbara Percival (bobperciva@yahoo.com).

Watkins modernization community meeting on May 19th

The Watkins modernization process is moving forward, and DGS and DCPS are holding another meeting to help keep the community updated on progress with the master plan development and near term building upgrades. The current plan is to upgrade the windows this summer, starting sometime in late-June or after.

The meeting will be held in the Watkins Library on May 19th at 6pm. The next community meeting won't be until September, so this is a great time to catch up on the school improvement process.

Draft Master Plan for the New Watkins Elementary

Last week DGS and Perkins Eastman Architects presented the draft master plan for the Watkins Elementary modernization process. After feedback from the community and other stakeholders and following a community meeting with DPR, the DGS team and architects went back to the drawing board. They came up with a broad-based plan that addresses the needs of the school's staff and students and the needs of the community through the DPR facilities, like the gymnasium.

Draft Watkins modernization master plan site layout

Draft Watkins modernization master plan site layout

The proposed master plan would demolish the current multipurpose room/gym and build administrative facilities in that space. To the east of the current building there would be a new wing that will house the gym and a separate cafeteria and stage space. This would replace area that is currently parking lot, leading to a new entry point on D St for vehicles coming onto the Watkins site.

The proposed design for Watkins meets most aspects of the 'ed spec' (educational specifications) for the school. The redesign will improve the movement of students and visitors into the school and provide improved facilities for the community.

If you'd like to learn more about the plans or provide feedback, come to the community meeting this Thursday, April 2nd at Watkins.

See the full plan details on the DGS website.

Watkins modernization April/March community meeting [rescheduled]

The Watkins modernization process continues this week with the March community meeting. If you would like to learn more about the plans to upgrade and expand the Watkins Elementary facilities over the coming years--including new windows and heating / air conditioning system upgrades this summer--please join the DC Department of General Services and DC Public Schools this Thursday, April 2nd, at 6pm. The meeting will be held in the Watkins Library.

(The meeting was reschedule from the original date of March 26th.)