It's the meeting at the Downtown Library about SPS taking over the Federal Reserve building. (The meeting is at 6 pm in the "Microsoft" auditorium with a walk-thru of the Federal Reserve building around 7:15 pm.) Again, this is billed as a "conversational" meeting so I will have to see what form that conversation takes.
I also see, at the notice at the district webpage, NO mention of how to pay for these renovations. According to the Times, it would be something on the order of $53M (up from Flip Herndon's ballpark $40M) AND they would be seeking levies funds to pay for it. No mention either of downtown businesses or foundations willing to help this effort for a school they all seem to so deeply need/want.
I hope all of you know that Charlie and I could never have this blog without you. And not just as readers. So many of you send me alerts, messages, info - truly, thank you.
So it is in this case that another public education advocate has found some interesting information.
First, there are several groups heavily pushing this downtown school in the Federal Reserve bldg and yet, not a cent of money pledged (to make the district's application look better).
Second, there's now a seeming pattern starting of districts taking old federal buildings and turning them into charter schools.
Understand that after getting that charter application okayed, the BIGGEST issue for charters is facilities. It is a huge issues in NYC and probably will only get better. Indeed, the Gates Foundation created a group just to help charters they want to support with capital funding.
But you might wonder, how would that work here? Well, a couple of ways.
One, our district becomes a charter district and allows that to happen.
Two, that handy takeover mechanism in 1240. Boy, wouldn't that be quite the sad thing to pass a levy just for that building, renovate it and THEN have the parents and/or teachers take it over. It would be much easier to do in the earlier years of a new SPS school than later. And, if the school was not just enrolled from downtown kids but kids whose parent enroll them there and work downtown, well, that would be a much easier lift to get them to sign away the building.
As you probably know, Seattle's Downtown Association is pushing for a downtown school. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Vulcan are part of this association:
ttle/blog/2014/06/power-play- nfluential-group-pushes-for- downtown.html?page=all
The Downtown Association has public support behind this initiative: https://www.facebook.com/Downt
Supporters of the Downtown School are excited about Denver's downtown school, which happens to house a charter school.
It appears, Federal Reserve buildings have been used for charter schools. The feds now provide assistance for charter schools.
"Veritas has been at the old Federal Reserve Building at 168 Jefferson Ave. Downtown."
2. "Meanwhile, the Grizzlies Academy is preparing to move into the former Federal Reserve Building off Third Street Downtown"
ews/2-charter-schools-set-to-o pen-in-shelby-county-12-others -wait-for-2014/