Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Live Blogging From Boundaries Work Session

Update - my iPad is not cooperating so I will have to stop live blogging.

1) One of the larger crowds I have ever seen at a Work Session.
2) Charlie and I are both here.  Uh oh.

Michael Tolley, blah, blah, timeline.

Sherry Carr - what do you want from us?
Tolley - a nod, affirmation that this is the right thing and feedback

(Note: this is a LOT of information so I don't know how much overall agreement there can be.)

Tolley reviewing Board policy on Educational and Racial Equity.

Lost a bit there but there was a discussion from DeBell about being fiscally able to enact these.

Peaslee asked if it would not be easier to move programs/services than boundaries.  Libros said that they used to "plop" programs where they had space and this would address that.  (I note that does not answer the question directly.)

DeBell wanted to add on Libros' statements.  But he said we had open choice and school level management and "we have to reel back in."   If we have a minimum of PE/arts, then we need to get there for all students.

Tolley on page 11 now and has excerpted a portion of the Superintendent's procedure.

First up, ELL.

Next, Special Ed.  "Design is not complete subject to bargaining process."

Peaslee - situations now where higher concentration of Special Ed in some areas, higher than regular percentage, wondering if any way that will be addressed?
Libros - WSS formula this year included a weighting for certain adm positions for students needing these services.  Libros stressed how overcrowded buildings already are.  Worse before it gets better.

Smith-Blum - Pilot ideas around using our facilities for longer periods, like a college (rather than a smaller space of time).
Tolley - those conversation have occurred in the past and have not incorporated it here but we are "at the beginning of the process."  An odd statement given how far along they truly are.
Smith-Blum - compliation of Special Ed services shows gaps.  Wondering if we are going to see a roll-up of that idea in this presentation.
Libros - gave you packet of maps previously, how this evolves, this is crucial info.  (what this means, I don't know)
Tolley - said not finalized design but still working

Highly Capable
Charlie points out that on page 15, they quote the WAC rather than any district/Board policy because there is NO policy.

Tolley - reading slides but NOT saying what "services" he is referencing.
Peaslee - APP parents concerned about splits.
Tolley - at the beginning of conversation (Charlie says maybe but it's the end of the decision-making process if you look at this presentation).  Will answer towards end when he presents data (I believe he means the heat maps.)
Tolley - how to provide services with each type of pathway

Peaslee - previous map showed where APP students are living now, these are only APP students using service


mirmac1 said...

WTF? Libros, here's the 2013-2014 WSS changes. How do assistant principals and elementary counselors help special education students?

Anonymous said...

Four thoughts and a comment about making Immersion Schools Option schools, not assignments.

Comment: Good.

Thought 1: But why not Concord, too? Make the classification of this whole LI program "option" so it can be developed coherently in the future.

Thought 2: Many will want to move McDonald or JSIS immersion program to a different Madrona. But, I doubt administration will do it. They have the "vision" that 2 LI programs in an area will role up to 1 middle school to form a cohort large enough to support middle school LI.

Thought 3: District can't yank the carpet out from JSIS/McDonald all together. Perhaps a large "preference" area for assignment, largely mirroring today's assignment boundaries, can ease the transition?

Thought 4: My guess: the huge asks by JSIS and McDonald for parent $$$ to fund IAs is what is driving the move to Option status. Not the enrollment issues. I bet this is being done on the basis of "equity" not "capacity". So if JSIS/McDonald do not like this suggestion, I am betting they will have to give up their huge fundraising targets. Which they will not want to do, because they believe the extra teaching help is crucial. It will be interesting to watch the parent-staff-Board back and forth on this.


ExpandWhatWorks said...

Why move JSIS at all? Why not duplicate it elsewhere?

In fact, why isn't that the model with all the successful, in demand, popular alternative programs? Duplicate them. Duplicate them into schools that are undercapacity to attract people to those schools.

I don't see why they have to mess up something that is working. If you want to create more access to it, make a copy of it elsewhere.

mirmac1 said...

make a copy of it, along with multiple $100Ks to pay for the reduced ratios? Not feasible, not sustainable and unequitable.

ExpandWhatWorks said...

That is absurd, Mirmac1. You are just making stuff up.

There is no way it would be less costly to move the JSIS program elsewhere and then expand it, with the disruption and costs of that move, than it would be to leave it where it is and make a clone of it elsewhere. That is an absurd claim.

mirmac1 said...

Replicate JSIS. Fundraise >$300K to pay for bilingual IAs.

Replicate K-5STEM. Staffing ratios are like other elementaries. Perhaps fundraise for additional science/engr kits. Move it to Schmitz Park. Where is the uproar about disruption and cost? meh.

Melissa Westbrook said...

Ed Voter, you seem to be right on point. Concord would get a pass because of the isolation of the school.

Foreign language immersion costs a lot of money; I think that was Mirmac's point.

It is unlikely they would move JSIS, more likely to move McDonald's program.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
mirmac1 said...


Anonymous said...
McDonald doesn't even have immersion in all K-5 grades, yet, right? I believe it's only immersion through 3rd grade at this point.

That's right Anonymous (remember to pick a monicker). And I believe the PTSA pressured parents to raise $300K this year. Someone correct me if I'm wrong.

Anonymous said...

Right. Mirmac didn't even mention the fact that the immersion schools are pretty much sped free. Nobody has ever bothered to figure out how to do sped in an immersion program. Like other boutique's, they squeeze sped populations into other schools, and that's a pretty big problem in the Hamilton service area. If you replicate schools, what will happen to students who need sped services? They just have to go somewhere else? Mirmac is right - it's unsustainable, especially since it provides a more deluxe education that isn't self-funded. Better to figure out some way to serve all students at all schools. We can't keep having sped wastelands without any service. At some point, you've got to serve the kids in the neighborhood.

sped parent