Friday, February 13, 2009

Updates on New K-8

Thanks to Kellie La Rue for these Jane Addams K-8 Design Team updates:

There are now two information nights for the new Jane Addams program
>
> March 5 and March 17
> 6:30 - 8:00
>
> Opportunity to meet the principals, tour the building, view
> instructional materials, get an overview of the program.
>
> The mission statement is:
>
"Jane Addams K-8, an environmental sciences school, empowering creative and critical thinkers who nurture themselves, their community and their environment."

Also, I did attend the BEX Oversight Committee meeting this morning (more on that in another thread) but there was some information tied to the new K-8. Hale has a Horticulture program and has a large greenhouse some ways away from the building past the athletic field. The greenhouse sits on Seattle Public Utility land (there is no lease just some loose agreement from the '70s) but now the SPU wants the land back. There is not enough land by Hale itself so they are thinking of building it behind the Jane Addams building. Their thought is perhaps it could also be used by the K-8 program.

Given the mission statement above mentioning "environmental sciences", it might be a great tie-in and provide opportunities for students from Hale to work with younger students.

9 comments:

Shannon said...

Well, as the parent of a incoming 3rd grader looking for a home that sounds good. Of course, mission statements can lose something in the translation and I hope to see more nuts and bolts information as time goes on.

Thanks for the details on information sessions Kelly.

zb said...

It sounds totally uninteresting to me. I'll be intrigued to see how this plays out in rearranging load in NE.

Dorothy said...

Where did this new mission statement come from and why is it different from last week's announcement that it would have a World Languages focus? What's next week's mission statement going to be? Any predictions?

WenG said...

@Dorothy: I know. It would be great to have both.

If the new Addams offers this focus, along with Japanese as one of the language offerings, this would fulfill everything my kids want/need. Their friends currently at Summit would also want to stay. The downside to Northshore, our current district, is that world languages don't start until 9th grade. For my kids, that's just too late. They want them now.

My kids start grades 6 and 7 this fall, so the suggestion to delay a full K-8 rollout won't help us. I'm still not sure how SE and SW schools are going to fare, but I think configuring a new Addams is going to be the easiest of the challenges to solve.

Dorothy said...

Next they'll announce that each student gets a pony.

adhoc said...

I think the 8A start time for the Jane Adamms K-8 will be a deal breaker for families in the south part of the NE cluster.

The bus ride for kids living in Laurelhurst, View Ridge, Ravenna, Udistrict will be 45-60 minutes long. Kids would be waiting at bus stops at 7A.


With an 8A start time school will let out at 2PM. Elementary age kids need supervision after school, and for working families the extra daycare would be an added expense....another negative.

Why would families in the south part of the cluster choose this school? They could choose their high performing neighborhood elementary schools where their kids could walk to school or have a short bus ride, a 9A start time, and fewer hours of daycare after school. For middle school they could choose high performing, established Eckstein with an 8A start time, where their kids could walk to school or have a short 15-20 minute bus commute.

I really hope the district will take into account the long bus rides and commutes of students, and reconsider their decision to have an 8A start time for Jane Adamms and other all cluster, multi cluster, and all city draw schools.

WenG said...

Dorothy: I don't expect ponies, although they have some nice acreage for it! If the goal is to better serve students through consolidation, then I 'd like to see world languages at every school.

Adhoc: I agree. If we still lived in L-hurst, there would be no point unless the school offered a program that was such a great fit for my kids, we'd make some sacrifices to get them to and from if there was room for them. But this is old-SPS thinking, maybe? Because if the goal is equal schools for all, this kind of logistical strategizing will purportedly become a thing of the past.

My kids had a 90-minute commute when they rode the bus from TC to after care at Laurelhurst. This was the year transpo stopped paying for two buses. I would never intentionally engineer this kind of commute for them, but we lived next to L-hurst Elem and only one of our kids was assigned there. I felt very lucky when we found two spots at TC in late September.

I think transportation will continue to be a problem until parents can trust every school with their kids. Until that time, the ability to walk to school seems like a dream from a bygone era for a lot of us, who work in one place, live in another, with younger kids who aren't ready for Metro.

For now, we're still in NSD. Movement between schools is very restricted. There are exceptions, but unless you have an IEP, you're responsible for providing transportation if you move outside your designated school.

I'm not sure how long it will take SPS to get to this point, and honestly, I don't think they will ever achieve it even if they want to.

JMT said...

Has anyone else noticed the new "website" for Jane Addams?
http://www.janeaddamsk8.com/

While I think it is great that the District is doing something (I found the link off of the enrollment page), couldn't that have put a bit more effort into the look? I'm sorry, but the Times Roman font looks so amateur. And I do realized it's about content, not look and feel, but seriously?!

Charlie Mas said...

I'm sorry if I'm spamming or sounding like a broken record on this, but the Spectrum program at Jane Addams is the third Spectrum site in the Northeast cluster. There are also three ALOs in this cluster.

Meanwhile, there are zero Spectrum programs and zero ALOs among the six schools in the West Seattle-South cluster.

Is this the equity and access that the District is trying to create?

Is this how the District is going to get more minority students and students from low-income households into advanced learning programs?

The next time they even suggest such a thing I'm going get right in their faces and yell "HA!"