It appears that a couple of people dropping off the speakers list so there is at least one spot open if you want to call in to claim it, 252-0040. As well, they will have a waitlist in case any of the scheduled speakers do not come forward.
Also, Director Peaslee has put forth her own amendment. I agree with her thinking.
Basically, she is asking for two things:
- wait a year for implementing the new JA Middle School with planning for it ongoing and a planning principal in place by September 2013
- reassign Laurelhurst students to Eckstein to take the pressure off of Hamilton (and fit in those APP students).
As well, it asks for the Superintendent to support an effort to recruit students for JA K-8, Pinehurst, TOPS and Salmon Bay.
Over enrollment at Hamilton can be relieved with minimal disruption by assigning the 6th
graders from Laurelhurst to Eckstein. Pressure on Eckstein and Hamilton can be relieved by
District supported recruitment effort of new 6th
graders at Jane Addams, Pinehurst, TOPS at Seward and Salmon Bay. Transportation from Eckstein service area to Jane Addams, Pinehurst, TOPS and Salmon Bay is already in our budget.
This amendment also delays assigning students from Sacajawea, John Rogers and Olympic Hills
to JAMS for one year, giving time to redraw boundaries and adequately plan and implement a
quality comprehensive middle school. Students from those schools will be encouraged to
voluntarily enroll at Jane Addams for school year 2013-14, but their assignment to Eckstein
Middle School will not be changed until school year 2014.
Students in the NE will be permitted to attend Eckstein as planned and promised, while
boundaries are redrawn and a quality comprehensive middle school is planned at JAMS.
She explains the alternative:
Adopt current staff recommendation. This is not desirable because it abruptly reassigns students
from three schools to a comprehensive middle school at JAMS that has not been planned.
Parents doubt that it will be equal in quality to Eckstein. If 17 portables are located at JAMS
(shown as Roll Up Option B in the Fiscal Analysis document), it will likely prove unacceptable
and will result in moving the two K-8 schools to John Marshall in a year or two. This move will
prove unacceptable to many families who will withdraw their students and place them in
neighborhood schools, thereby weakening both K-8 schools and increasing capacity problems in
other overenrolled NE schools.
By forcing a small group of 6th graders into a new (and quickly planned) middle school, the district does NOT significantly reduce the enrollment at either Hamilton or Eckstein.
What it does is tell those families a couple of things. One, we will tell you over and over at public meetings that nothing will change for next year and then abruptly change our minds. Two, we will favor one group of students over another.
I do want to point out that shared pain is better than targeted pain. It is better to wait, plan and then have every share the pain of boundary redraws as a region/district, than to focus on one small group of students. And if it were your student, you would not like it one bit.