Arlington Public Schools were among the
40 91 percent of school districts in Virginia that failed to meet the Adequate Yearly Progress objectives set under the No Child Left Behind Act this year. Arlington also failed to meet AYP objectives last year.
This year, 16 Arlington schools met federal AYP targets – down one from last year. The remaining 14 schools failed to meet AYP.
The neighboring Falls Church and Alexandria City school systems also failed to meet AYP. Fairfax County was the only school system in Northern Virginia to get a passing grade.
In announcing the results, the school system cited overall progress in several areas, including reading and math.
“This year’s results include several promising trends in academic achievement,” superintendent Dr. Pat Murphy said in a statement. “Improving student achievement requires tremendous dedication by everyone, and I commend our team of dedicated professionals for their continued commitment and effort to support our students.”
“As we prepare for the 2010–11 school year, we will build changes and improvements in our instructional program,” Dr. Murphy said. ”This work begins with analysis of these results to determine what changes and adjustments should be made to ensure that our students attain greater success in the coming year.”
Several AYP benchmarks were made more stringent this year, according to a press release from the Virginia Department of Education.
The results cited by the state are preliminary and may change when the final analysis comes out in September, the school system cautioned.
The National Weather Service has issued a severe thunderstorm watch for Arlington until 9:00 p.m. Storms are approaching the area from the northwest.
The man suspected in the stabbing deaths of five people was arrested and later released in Arlington last week, the Arlington County Police Department has confirmed.
Elias Abuelazam, 33, was pulled over for a traffic violation on the 1100 block of South Walter Reed Drive early Thursday morning, according to police spokesperson Crystal Nosal. After Abuelazam’s information was run through a computer database, he was arrested on an outstanding warrant for simple assault in Leesburg.
He was booked and a mug shot was taken. A magistrate then released him on his own personal recognisance, police said.
The Washington Post reports that Abuelazam is suspected in a stabbing that occurred in Leesburg later that morning.
Abuelazam was arrested at Atlanta’s Hartsfield Airport last night while reportedly trying to flee to Israel. He is suspected in at least 20 stabbings in Michigan, Ohio and Northern Virginia. Five of those attacks were fatal.
Abuelazam lived in Leesburg as recently as one year ago, according to ABC 7.
Seeing the storm damage in D.C. and Montgomery County this morning brought back memories of the storms that ripped through Arlington and Alexandria one week ago.
One storm-related incident in particular still has people talking a week later — the parking lot full of cars with blown-out windows at the Shirlington Bus Station.
How exactly did it happen? Nobody seems to know for sure. But one reader recently sent us this dramatic account of what she saw as the storm rolled through Shirlington.
Just as FYI – it was closer to 20 vehicles that had the glass blown out of their vehicles, not 6. And the storm took out their back glass, side windows and in some cases even the windshields… Working in the ANSER bldg across from the bus stop – employees watched as the trash cans and paper vending machines were swirled up as high as the 5th floor – then dropped like lead weights back to the ground.
The straight line winds in Shirlington were at around 70 miles per hour.
Getting into fender bender is never fun. But it’s even less fun when the other driver pulls out a razor and tries to cut you with it. That’s what happened to one man on Tuesday, according to this week’s Arlington County Crime Report.
The victim’s clothing was torn but he was otherwise uninjured.
ATTEMPT MALICIOUS WOUNDING 08/10/10, 5600 block of N. Carlin Springs Road. On August 10 at 3 pm, a man reported to have been assaulted with a box cutter. The encounter occurred after a minor accident involving the victim and suspect. The suspect is described as a 35-year-old white Hispanic male, 5’8” to 5’9” and 200 lbs.
The rest of the crime report, after the jump.
This morning’s storms did not slam Arlington with the widespread flooding and power outages with which the District is still coping.
The weather did, though, prompt Rosslyn to cancel its lunchtime farmers market and concert today.
The storms also knocked out power in some areas. As of 9:30 a.m. there were 309 Dominion customers without power in Arlington. A number of traffic lights are reported to be on flash.
During the storm, several passengers got stuck on the elevator at the Courthouse Metro station, TBD reported. It’s not clear whether the elevator problem was caused by the storm.
According to Screwtop Wine Bar owner Wendy Buckley, a county zoning employee “randomly” stopped by just before 4:00 p.m. and took her sandwichboard sign.
“This sign cost me over $175!” Buckley wrote in an email shortly after the incident. “I just got a call… telling me he threw it in a dumpster.”
Also gone: the sign for Bakeshop, the cupcake-and-coffee place down the block from Screwtop. See below for the county’s explanation of why the signs were removed.
“I’m a pretty positive and easy going person,” Buckley said. “But with today’s actions I am beginning to wonder what won’t this county do to hurt small businesses?”
Buckley quickly added that the county board has been “great” and are “the only people who ‘get it’” when it comes to the needs of small businesses.
In fact, during July’s three-hour board discussion of sidewalk seating on Fillmore Street, board member Chris Zimmerman emphatically encouraged his county colleagues to be more permissive with signs, especially sandwich board signs. Zimmerman and other board members spoke specifically about using signs to attract more foot traffic to the sleepy portion of North Fillmore Street where Screwtop and Bakeshop reside.
“Each of us on North Fillmore Street has a sandwich board sign to try and attract eyeballs down from Clarendon Boulevard,” Buckley said. “I am always happy to comply with any law, but our little businesses are doing everything we can to survive on this street. I don’t see how our signs, which are out of the way, can hurt anyone.”
Update at 2:15 p.m. — The head of the Arlington County Zoning Office has responded to our story.
Zoning Administrator Melinda Artman says sandwich board signs are prohibited throughout Arlington County. Despite supportive words for the signs at the July board meeting, Artman says board members must take legislative action in order to permit the signs to be placed on county property.
Screwtop was given three warnings about its sign, Artman says. The first was issued on June 10. The last was issued within the past couple weeks, and included a warning citation that the sign was “subject to immediate removal,” according to Artman.
It is a criminal misdemeanor offense to place a sign on public property in Arlington County. Violations are subject to fines up to $2,500. Screwtop has not been fined.
Artman says the county confiscates hundreds of signs per week, but tries to warn business owners first before removing them.
“Of course we support small business here in Arlington… but the feedback we receive from the community is that sign enforcement is very important to them,” she said.
When a sign is confiscated it’s thrown out, since the zoning office has no storage capacity.
Artman says many businesses, especially in the Ballston area, openly flout the county’s sign regulations. Sign enforcement has become a cat and mouse game; recently inspectors started conducting sign enforcement randomly rather than at set times, because businesses had gotten wise to the inspection schedules. The county now deploys six inspectors on sign enforcement details for three hours each week.