Saturday, August 09, 2014

Seattle Schools This Week

As a heads up, the district is offering (at nearly every elementary and K-8), Jump Start for kindergarteners.  Sounds like a great program.  From the flyer:

It is a weeklong experience for new kindergarteners and their families to learn about their new school. Children will become familiar with the school building, staff, and typical school-day activities and practices.

This summer, over 50 elementary and K-8 schools across the city of Seattle will offer Jump Start the week of August 18-22. Jump Start will run for five consecutive half-days (usually 9 a.m. to noon). Parents/guardians will have a chance to meet with the school principal during the week. Interpreters will be available for children who are English-language learners.

Families who have enrolled their child in kindergarten will receive a letter from their assigned school inviting them to participate. Families will need to reserve a space and return needed health and safety forms ahead of time. Not every school offers Jump Start, so call Seattle Public Schools Early Learning Department at (206) 252-0186 or Enrollment Services at (206) 252-0760 to check. 
Monday, August 11th
Curriculum and Instruction Committee Meeting from 4:30-6:30 pm.  Agenda (which looks to have been heavily revamped)
Well, this should be interesting.  Between Charles Wright's letter about the consultant for the Special Ed C-CAP being reviewed and the announcement of recommendations from the Advanced Learning Taskforce, it could be quite the meeting.  

The Committee is also to get an update on assessments,  the BAR for School Funding model, update on "Indigenous People of Washington State" curriculum and discussion around community engagement for interscholastic activities, high school grade/credit marking and high school graduation requirements.  
The BAR for the TIERS consultant contract (for Sped C-CAP) has been taken off the agenda.  
But, the BARs for other Sped issues, are still on the agenda. 
I also note the appearance of a BAR on "Selection and Adoptions of Instructional Materials Action," Policy 2015.  This confuses me somewhat as it was revised in October 2013.

Tuesday, August 12th
The second meeting about a possible downtown school will be held, from 6-8 pm at the Belltown Community Center, 415 Bell Street.  (I saw an article in the Times today about how Vulcan is buying up buildings in the South Lake Union area to convert into apartments.  Not a word about helping create a downtown school even though the City has zoning up for building heights for that area if a developer puts in a school.)  

Wednesday, August 13th
Executive Committee Meeting from 8:30 am-10:00 am.  Agenda.
A seemingly light agenda for this Committee as they go over the agendas for the next two Board meetings, discuss the next Board Retreat and talk about naming the new building at Decatur.  Note: they will be having an Executive Session at the end of the meeting; the public cannot remain for that so the meeting will likely end around 9:30 am.

Saturday, August 16th
Community Meeting with Director Martin-Morris at NE Branch Library from 10 am to noon.  I'm sure there must be a plethora of topics that parents might want to discuss with him. 


Ragweed said...

Repeating this post from last weeks thread on the CI committee.

The Indigenous People's of Washington State Curriculum most likely refers to the State of WA Tribal Soverignty Curriculum.

A brief overview of the project by Shana Brown and CHiXapkaid (Michael Pavel) can be found here

A more extensive analysis of the scope of the problem and the goals for creating the curriculum is found in the report From Where the Sun Rises, Addressing the Educational Achievement of Native Americans in Washington State

From the report:

Indian education dates back to a time when all children were identified as gifted and talented. Each child had a skill and ability that would contribute to the health and vitality of the community. Everyone in the community was expected and trained to be a teacher to identify and cultivate these skills and abilities. The elders were entrusted to oversee this sacred act of knowledge being shared. That is our vision for Indian education today.
P. 3.

This achievement gap is merely a symptom of an entire system that needs deep evolution. We all want this achievement gap to close. We all want to see consistencies among the variety of people and cultures in WASL scores, graduation rates and college graduations. But we will not make significant changes to these "concrete indicators". unless a much deeper system change occurs. It may be that as we make these critical changes to the foundations of our education systems, we may find the importance of "concrete indicators" will fall away, revealing the nature of the success we are seeking has to do with engagement, participation and following a more ancient protocol. These are essential pieces for true evaluation of achievement.

The full Tribal Soverignty Curriculum can be found here:

mirmac1 said...

Some of us attended the C&I meeting (in my case to see the interim SpEd leadership)

I was struck by yet another morphing of expensive formative, computer-adaptive, whatever jargon, testing software. The new plan is MAP for K-2 (very inappropriate) and a new shiny thing call mBeacon for 3-5 that's optional. Both contracts coincidentally fall just under the $250K threshold for board approval at $247K-ish each. Here we go again.