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New school year begins for DC public school students

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser official opens the Ron Brown College Preparatory High School in Northeast D.C. Aug. 22 on the first day of school for D.C. public school students. (WTOP/Nick Iannelli)

WASHINGTON — As D.C. public school students returned to class for the new school year Monday, city leaders pointed to the opening of a brand-new school as an example of how the overall system is improving.

“It gives me great pleasure to welcome all of you to this beautiful school,” Mayor Muriel Bowser announced Monday morning at Ron Brown College Preparatory High School.

The all-male school just opened in a renovated building near the Deanwood Metro station in Northeast.

Bowser said the school will be “focusing on how we will develop our young men academically, socially and get them ready to be the fathers and young men who will lead our city forward.”

The school only offers 9th grade currently, but every year it will expand until it offers 9th-12th grade.

“The first day of school is always a very exciting day,” said D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson, who compared it to opening day for baseball fans.

As the new school year begins, the public school system in the District is preparing for major changes.

Public Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson will be stepping down at the end of next month. She will be replaced by the Chief of Schools John Davis on an interim basis as a search begins for Henderson’s replacement.

Henderson did not mention the change during Monday’s news conference, only saying the school system is “rising” and getting stronger.

“It’s a great day at DCPS,” she said. “The level of energy and excitement is amazing.”

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