Payne Wildcat News: PTSA Meeting with Principal Byrd | Clear Mask Delivery | Parent Focus Group

Hello, Wildcats. 

Please join the PTSA at 6 p.m. Wednesday for a virtual meeting. Principal Byrd will attend and will help to field questions from the Payne community. The PTSA also will provide an overview of work we’ve done so far this year and an outlook for the months ahead.

Link to attend the virtual PTSA meeting:

Do you have a question, concern or idea for the PTSA or Principal Byrd? Please click here and fill out this form. We value input from the entire Payne community and want to hear what’s on your mind.

DCPS Term 3 Meeting: DCPS will have a Term 3 TeleTownhall, also on Wednesday, at 5 p.m. PTSA will be watching this meeting and will share highlights. If you’d like to attend this one as well, click here for details.



Specially-designed masks for Payne’s deaf and hard of hearing program have arrived. These anti-fogging masks are made with a clear screen that allows you to see mouth movements and better understand facial cues. The masks were funded through a $2,000 Capitol Hill Community Foundation grant. The PTSA received a substantial discount after the seller learned Payne is a Title 1 school with a DHOH program. 



Reading Partners, a tutoring program that has been helping Payne students learn to read for years, is encouraging families to sign up for virtual sessions on Zoom. The program is offering 1-on-1 reading tutoring to students, free of charge, and will work with your family’s schedule.

  • All Kindergarten and first grade students are eligible for the program.
  • Second, third and fourth grade students who are behind grade level also are eligible.

This is a fantastic opportunity to supplement school instruction. If you are interested, please reach out to Natalie Danett at or call 845-803-9770.



Serve Your City Ward 6 Mutual Aid is offering free tutoring and enrichment opportunities, including guitar lessons, yoga, and cooking classes. Click here to sign up and for their full list of offerings. They also share a handy list of free activities you can do independently at home. 



DCPS Early Childhood division is seeking parent feedback on a safe and successful school year for 2021-2022 and is hosting a focus group meeting for PK3 and PK4 parents, 5-6 p.m. March 11. 

The meeting is addressing two topics: 

  1. Reopening: How DCPS is safely preparing to bring students back to school for School Year 2021-2022.
  2. Learning Recovery: What are your concerns around learning loss that may have occurred for our youngest learners, and what would families like to see to address the losses? 

If you would like to participate in the meeting email:, family service coordinator at DCPS. Include your name and your child’s name. 



The 2021 Panorama Student Survey and Panorama Family Survey are open through March 19. “The Panorama Survey is a critical way to measure progress toward our goal that every student feels loved, challenged, and prepared to positively influence society and thrive in life,” DCPS writes. “And your feedback helps us better understand the needs of our students and families.” Read more about the survey and how schools use it at



D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson held a community meeting last week on an “Academic Recovery Plan,” and representatives from the Ward 6 Public Schools Parent Organization provided a concise summary of what parents care about. Suggestions include more mental health professionals and some clarity on Term 4. Click here for their report.



As a reminder, Payne Elementary School is an Honored School. Go to to recognize our teachers today. Those who participate and share praise for a Payne teacher will be randomly entered to win a gift card from Amazon, and your teacher could win a gift card to Tryst Coffee Shop. When you honor a teacher the message is shared on social media like this Facebook post: 



Monday, March 1: My School DC Application deadline for PK3-8th 

Wednesday, March 3: PTSA meeting, 6 p.m.

Friday, March 5: No school; parent-teacher conferences

April 12-16: Spring break, no school