The district will not be able to quickly increase capacity to respond to the new reality. The BOC will be in the Graham Hill building, the ORCA property will be sold, and the confidence of parents in the Seattle public schools will be diminished further.
In addition, having schools at 100% or more capacity in the Southeast means:
- The promise of smaller class sizes in the early grades, as described in the CACIEE report and promoted in the Seattle teachers’ union initiative will not be able to be a reality in Southeast quadrant schools since there will be no room for additional classrooms in schools already at capacity.
- The district’s vision of better schools for all, drawing parents back into the public schools, and decreasing the number of south end parents who send their kids to north end schools, will not be possible because there will be no room in the Southeast for that to happen.
- Changes in school reassignment plans designed to decrease the transportation costs and bring more children back to neighborhood schools will not be able to be implemented in the Southeast schools because their will be no room.
There is little to be gained, and much to be lost, by moving so quickly to close so many schools. Fewer schools should be closed, especially in the Southeast cluster.