Chevy Chase Citizens Association: June 13, 2018

Lafayette Elementary School went through an extensive renovation in 2016. (Brian Kapur/The Current/August 2016)

The two public elementary schools in our association’s area are finishing successful years, one in a newly renovated building and the other about to move into new quarters.

Students and teachers at Lafayette Elementary School at Broad Branch Road and Northampton Street NW settled in during the second year after reconstruction, and made great use of their new space. This year, the public school system completed finishing touches, including the installation of a new floor mosaic in the school’s “great hall.”

More changes are planned, as enrollment continues to rise. Lafayette expects over 850 students for 2018-2019. To meet this rising demand, the school is converting some common open spaces into closed classrooms, adding classes and hiring new personnel. Lafayette added two special education classrooms this year, and will be adding a third next school year. The Lafayette community has been busy enjoying end-of-the-year traditions, including Arts Night, Field Day and parties.

After two years in temporary quarters at the University of the District of Columbia, Murch Elementary School will reopen at 4810 36th St. NW this summer after an $83.3 million renovation. Projected enrollment is 618, up from 583. Besides a new cafeteria and media room inside, families are looking forward to playgrounds and a soccer field, among other outdoor spaces. For more information, visit

In the school year ending this month, Murch students performed at an annual talent show, a lip sync event and a Festival of Lights holiday show. Students sang at a public school system music festival and honors ensembles performance, and at the D.C. Public Education Fund Conference. They staged a colorful and entertaining production of the “Willy Wonka Jr.” musical at the UDC Theater of the Arts. Murch participated in the Embassy Adoption Program and learned about the culture and traditions of Great Britain. You can sign up for an e-newsletter at

— Ted Gest and Tammy Horn