WASHINGTON — As students in D.C. began a new school year Monday morning, students from the first all-girls school under D.C. Public Schools received a special welcome back to school.
“Today I am proud to open with all of you, the Excel Academy for girls in Ward 8,” said D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser on the campus’ courtyard before the start of class.
The Pre-K-8 Excel Academy in Southeast reopened Monday under the D.C. Public Schools system. The school, formerly a public charter, was forced to close its doors in January after losing its license due to poor performance, according to The Washington Post.
Excel Academy is the only all-girls school in D.C. The Ron Brown College Preparatory High School in Northeast is D.C.’s only all-boys public school.
Excel Academy Principal Tenia Pritchard said the school’s reopening marks “a fight for social justice and education.”
“Our children are still victims of institutionalized racism because of implicit and explicit biases … which negatively impact their outcomes in achievement,” said Pritchard.
DCPS Interim Chancellor Amanda Alexander said the students will have access to fields in which women are “historically underrepresented — such as architecture and computer science.”
As remarks from education officials came to a close, attendees threw confetti and cheered on the group of girls as they filed into the school to begin a new school year.