Week in Alexandria

Week in Alexandria

Englin Won’t Seek Reelection

In an emotional speech to the Alexandria Democratic Committee Monday night, four-term Del. David Englin (D-45) said he will not seek reelection to the House of Delegates next year. Englin acknowledged being unfaithful in his marriage to political consultant Shayna Englin, adding that he will “leave political life” to focus on rebuilding his marriage and his family.

“Shayna has always been the true source of my strength and my happiness, and we have been a team in my political work,” said Englin. “I am deeply sorry for hurting the people that I love the most and for disappointing so many others who put so much faith in me over the years.”

Englin said that with his announcement, attention will naturally turn to his successor. The seat was held for many years by former Del. Marian Van Landingham, and when she announced her retirement the crowded Democratic field included six Democrats vying for a spot on the general election ballot. Englin was considered by many to be a long-shot candidate because he had lived in Alexandria for a very short time before he ran for office. But through an aggressive door-to-door campaign in the summer of 2005, he emerged victorious.

“I want you to remember that as candidates emerge to succeed me,” said Englin. “No matter how improbable your candidacy may seem to others, if you believe you have something to offer people of the 45th District I urge you and I hope you will consider stepping forward to serve.”

Krupicka Changes Course

When he lost the Democratic primary for the Virginia state Senate last year, Alexandria Councilman Rob Krupicka told supporters that his campaign to succeed former state Sen. Patsy Ticer (D-30) would be his “last big campaign for a very long time.” Now that Englin has announced he will not seek a fifth term to the House of Delegates, Krupicka has changed course.

“I don’t think anybody could have predicted this,” said Krupicka when asked about his previous comments. “I made those comments with no state leadership opportunities in my community, and I have a lot of concerns about the direction this state has been heading in for some time.”

More School Problems

Last month, Alexandria Superintendent Morton Sherman was fending off calls for his resignation. Now he’s in the hot seat again, trying to explain a new report showing testing irregularities in the school system’s adult education program. In an April 2 letter to Sherman, Virginia Superintendent of Public Instruction Patricia Wright announced that state Office of Adult Education and Literacy will be conducting an on-site monitoring visit to review records from the last five years and conduct interviews.

“Pending the outcomes of the on-site review — or if circumstances require earlier action — ACPS may be subject to actions up to and including suspension or termination of grant funding to the ACPS adult education program,” Wright explained in the letter.

The report, issued March 30 from the state Division of Technology, Career and Adult Education and Literacy Services, found “serious flaws” in the assessment and data entry process.

The memorandum from state education officials concludes that Alexandria City Public Schools has “serious flaws” with the administration of the program. The report documented an inordinate number of adult education students received the same score on a basic skills test. It also pointed out that a total of 95 students supposedly took a speaking and comprehension test on the same day.

“This outside report was part of our ongoing review of all programs in the division,” said Sherman in an email responding to the report. “We can’t do everything at once, so adult ed was slated for review and improvement this year.”