ANC 7D Community Says “No” to Stadium

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Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 7D met Oct. 10 via Zoom. Commissioners Siraaj Hasan (7D01), Wendell Felder (7D03, chair), Commissioner Mike Davis (7D04), Ebony Payne (7D05), Marc Friend (7D06), Brett Astmann (7D07, treasurer), Brian Alcorn (7D08, vice chair), Ashley Schapitl (7D09), secretary) and Brianne Eby (7D10) were in attendance. Single Member District 7D02 remains vacant.

The RFK Future Taskforce presented the preliminary results of the group’s online survey of public opinion on future uses for the RFK Stadium campus. More than 1,700 responses were received. 67 percent preferred the site be used for other purposes than a sports stadium. Respondents expressed interest in a park, outdoor recreation uses and a sports and learning complex with facilities and activities for all ages.

Take the online survey at rfkfuture.org or via email at rfkfuture@gmail.com.

State Superintendent of Education Visits
DC State Superintendent of Education Dr. Christina Grant briefed the commission on programming within the DC school system. In addition to its state educational functions, The Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) serves as a support system for families navigating the public school system.

Grant discussed teacher retention, truancy and school resources. She described the multitude of internship and dual enrollment opportunities available to DC students.

A community member asked about the intersection of juvenile crime and public safety. What role should the schools play in mitigating violence? she asked.

The pandemic, Grant pointed out, brought nearly two years of virtual learning for DC students, many of whom missed key components of development in a peer setting. “Our children are not out of control and our children are not bad children. They are adolescents that missed critical milestones and their adolescent development,” she said.

Grant stressed the importance of “having additional support in schools” such as school resource officers so that children learn how to have safe interactions with law enforcement. Conflict resolution and de-escalation are essential skills for middle and high school students to build in a supportive setting, she stated.

Other Matters
At-Large Councilmember Robert White (D) briefed the commission on the DC Council’s work on housing, public safety and violence interruption in the District. The community cannot “police its way out of a public safety crisis,” he stated, noting the importance of addressing root issues of violence and crime including education, housing stability, employment and mental health.

The commission voted to:

  • approve several community members to serve on the commission’s Public Safety Committee (PSC);
  • support a Board of Zoning Adjustment (BZA) application for special exception relief to construct a rear addition to an existing, attached two-story principal dwelling unit at 1602 D St. NE;
  • draft a resolution acknowledging the Cain family, who lives on the 1500 block of A St. SE, for their contributions in civil rights legislation;
  • support to the Mayor’s Special Events Task Group for Eastern High School students and alumni to host their pre homecoming grade on Friday Nov. 3;
  • write to the District DMV Director concerning an org tag for ANC commissioners and alumni to help build awareness of ANCs and their work in the District.

ANC 7D meets next on Nov. 14 at 6:30 p.m. via Zoom. Learn more about the commission and register to attend at 7d0761.wixsite.com/anc7d-1.