DISTRICT BRIEFING

Saturday, May 31, 2008

SCHOOLS

Union Wants Probe Of Principals' Firings

Officials with the D.C. principals union are protesting Schools Chancellor Michelle A. Rhee's recent decision to dismiss about two dozen principals.

The union is planning to ask the D.C. Council to investigate whether the firings were fair, said Aona Jefferson, executive vice president of the Council of School Officers.

The union wants the D.C. Council "to know that her decision appears to be arbitrary, personal, political and potentially discriminatory," Jefferson said.

Jefferson said she sent Rhee a letter requesting a complete list of the principals whose contracts were not renewed and the reasons they were not reinstated. The principals work on a one-year contract.

Rhee and other school officials have declined to discuss specific reasons for the dismissals, citing privacy and personnel regulations. In broad terms, she has said that all the decisions are "absolutely" fair. She has been conducting an aggressive national advertising campaign to attract high-performing principals. Ten other principals either retired or resigned.

-- V. Dion Haynes

COURTS

11 Sentenced to Jail For Illegal Protests

Eleven members of a group found guilty of an illegal demonstration at the U.S. Supreme Court in January over conditions at the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, were sentenced to jail yesterday.

Thirty-four members of the group, Witness Against Torture, were convicted Thursday in D.C. Superior Court of misdemeanor charges stemming from the Jan. 11 protest on the Supreme Court plaza. Twenty-three of the defendants were given one year's probation.

Four of the 11 who received jail time were initially given probation by Judge Wendell P. Gardner Jr., but the four said they wanted to be jailed instead. The jail terms ranged from one to 15 days.

All were fined $50 and prohibited from going near the Supreme Court for a year.

-- Keith L. Alexander

SOUTHEAST

Man Is Fatally Shot Near His Home

A Southeast Washington man died Thursday night after he was shot near his home, police said.

Angelo Stephan Moore, 30, was found about 10:15 p.m. in the 3600 block of Ely Place SE.

No one has been arrested, and authorities urged anyone with information to call detectives at 202-727-9099.

-- Keith L. Alexander

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