Protests resulted in skirmishes and arrests at more than one school.
This is all happening under the chancellorship of Michelle Rhee, who learned something about teaching in her three years with Teach for America. More significantly, she learned she didn't want to be in a classroom for the rest of her career and instead founded The New Teacher Project, which is systematically turning an honorable profession into a drive-by experience on the way to greater things.
(A whole website was devoted to the DC chancellor and her Rheeform through much of 2008.)
Here's a comment by someone who lives in Washington and has been witnessing what's going on there:
It is not calm actually. Students were protesting and I have a feeling this is just the beginning. It gets even worse. I forgot to tell you this little tidbit. I don't know if it hit the news in NYC but... the contracted company that supplies the DC school system with its guards in the high schools wasn't getting paid in a timely fashion from DC so much so that the company went "belly up" and suddenly told its employees they no longer had jobs. So there were high schools all over the city without guards. Rhee tells the principals that the teachers need to fill in as this is an emergency situation. So all these teachers do not get lunch or preps and find themselves being forced to act as school security guards. Yipes!!! Then it was on the news that the DC police were going to try and step in until a new security firm could be hired. DC is definitely a mess.