In Washington D.C., symbols of our nation’s strength are abundant. Yet just miles from the White House and the United States Capitol building there are public schools where students have some of the lowest standardized test scores in the country. This staggering condition of educational inequity has lasting implications for our community—one-third of adults living in D.C. are functionally illiterate and the poverty rate in Prince George’s County has more than doubled in the last ten years.
While this gap remains a significant barrier to the future opportunities available to our kids, we are beginning to see inspiring evidence of change. Our alumni and corps members are working diligently alongside the community to improve the life trajectories of children in the District and Prince George’s County. Right now, there are 170 corps members in the Teach For America–D.C. Region, instructing more than 10,000 students within the beltway. At this scale, nearly one in six low-income students in the region is taught by a TFA corps member. Many alumni remain committed to our mission as well, including 36 principals and 43 assistant principals and deans. With more than 2,000 alumni in the region, Teach For America is fueling the local ecosystem of teachers, school leaders, and community leaders needed to accelerate and sustain the pace of education reform.