Saturday, September 06, 2014

Seattle Schools This Week

 I will be taking a hiatus this week to do other things.  Charlie may or may not be able to provide the Open Threads for this week.

Monday, September 8th
Curriculum & Instruction Committee meeting from 4:30pm - 6:30 pm.  Agenda

It includes a discussion of K-12 Science Education, BAR for both Advanced Learning and RTTT 3B Investment Fund for Pre K-3, and a BAR for "DOE grant."  That last one?  A bit cryptic.  Also, odd in this agenda is Agenda Format Change Discussion by Michael Tolley.

Lately, here's the thing that I find troubling. Step by step, bit by bit, staff seems to want to guide any discussion and even seem want to tell the Board how Work Sessions, retreats, and committee meetings should go.  That is wrong and the Board should push back. It's THEIR retreat, THEIR work sessions and THEIR committee meetings.

Wednesday, Sept. 10th
Executive Committee meeting from 8:30am-10:00 am.  Agenda

Work Session on Preschool from 4:30 pm-6 pm.  (I note a hard stop at 6 pm as the Board will then go into Executive Session.)

 I just wrote the Board on this one as I have some concerns.

This Work Session is NOT about current work on preschool between the City and the District as you might imagine.  It is all about the City's proposition.  (They call it a plan but it is the blueprint of the proposition.) I see no mention of the other proposition and yet the district works with both the unions and the City on preschool (thru the F&E levy).

If this Work Session is to explain the City's plan, it feels like the Board may be on some shaky ground here if they do not give the other proposition equal time.  

(By the way, I'll bet when this gets published,  that presentation gets changed to make it look like this Work Session does include discussion of what currently goes on with the City and district about preschoool.  That way, no one has to mention/invite folks from the other preschool measure.)

Thursday, Sept. 11
Audit&Finance Committee meeting from 4:30-6:30 pm.  No agenda yet available.

Community Meeting with Director McLaren at Southwest Branch Library from 6 pm - 7:45 pm.

Friday, September 12th
BEX Oversight Committee Meeting from 8:30am-10:30 am. JSCEE 2750
No agenda available but there will be a presentation by the architects creating the building for the Jane Addams K-8 school.  From the presentation:

Very limited Site Area (~3 acres)
– Odd shaped site with topography and retaining walls

- Accommodate K-8 program in limited Building area – 

~78,000 SF compared to ~120,000 SF Standard K-8 Model

-Support Environmental STEM Program
– Interactive programs, extensive outdoor learning 

– Support inclusive, multi-age learning environment
- Limited Parking, Drop-off and Bus Areas

- Requesting Departures for: Reduced Parking, On-Street Bus Loading, Building Height (3 stories), Lot coverage
Saturday, September 13th
Community Meeting with Director Carr from 8:30-10:00 am at Bethany Community Church.  Director Carr has a hard stop at 10 am as she must then get to...

Board Retreat from 10:30 am - 3:00 pm at the JSCEE auditorium.  No agenda yet available. 
I suspect this should be interesting given the bit of fireworks at the last one.  It will be Superintendent Nyland's first one so maybe he will have a calming effect on the group. 


ballard mom said...

Enjoy your time away from the blog!

Would you or Charlie be willing to make an open thread for wait list and assignment information so that can share this week. Thanks for all you do. This blog is truly a great community resource for all things seattle schools.

Charlie Mas said...

I am really looking forward to seeing that draft Advanced Learning policy. If it is anything like the last one that the staff brought it is going to get kicked back exactly as it was before.

Last time the staff brought nothing more than the model policy from WSSDA. It's a dreadful policy that doesn't actually include any policy in it. Also, nothing in it was specific to advanced learners or advanced learning. Everything it said about them would be true for any student.

An Advanced Learning policy should say:
1. Who should be served by our advanced learning programs and services. Should they serve students with high cognitive ability? students with advanced academic achievement? especially creative students? students with leadership skills? Some combination of those?

2. Why the District offers advanced learning programs and services. Why can't these students be adequately served in a general education classroom? What do they need that they can't get there?

3. To meet the requirements of Policy 2090, the Advanced Learning policy must also provide:

A. A clear statement of expectations for the district's instructional programs,
B. Staff, resources and support to achieve the stated expectations; and
C. A plan for evaluating instructional programs and services to determine how well expectations are being met.

Any proposed policy that fails to meet these minimum requirements fails as an effective policy.

Charlie Mas said...

Did anyone attend the C & I meeting? Can anyone provide a report?