Growth Boundary meeting from 6:30-7:30 pm at Mercer Middle School
Tuesday, October 7th
Community Meeting with Director McLaren from 6:00-745 pm at the West Seattle Branch Library
Growth Boundary meeting from 6:30-7:30 pm at Rainier Beach High School
Wednesday, October 8th
Executive Committee meeting from 8:30-10:00 am. Agenda. Reading over the agenda, I find it exceeding vague/cryptic.
There's an interesting notation on the agenda which is "items requiring Board Action on October 15 and/or Nov. 5th." This stands out because at the Executive Ctm meetings, they normally go over major items on the agendas for upcoming Board meetings (and that is on the agenda for the Ctm meeting).
So I wonder about this notation that perhaps there might be Intro/Action items on those two Board meeting agendas. If so, what could be so urgent that it couldn't have been introduced last Wednesday? I recall Director Carr saying (a couple of Board meetings back) that she wanted to present a resolution in support of "preschool." Since she and Director Martin-Morris (and former director Michael DeBell) are all out stumping for Prop 1B, maybe it will be specific to 1B.
Under "Special Attention Items" there is: field trip procedures.
As well, under "Government Relations" there's this: "follow-up to Director's meeting with King County official." What's that? With who?
Work Session -Federal Reserve Downtown School, 4:30-5:30 pm. Agenda.
This appears to be a review for the entire Board of what was presented at the Operations Committee meeting on acquiring the Federal Reserve building.
- The agenda says "downtown school K-5" but I absolutely believe that is an error and it should be Pre-K-5. It seems to me that district staff want this building for Pre-k-5 but it could be used for the World School.
It's pretty funny that the argument is that they will need more space in the Central district and, as well, the World School being downtown would be an excellent placement. But instead, they are doing the opposite - using TT Minor for the World School and wanting to open a Pre-k-5 downtown.
- They do give cost estimates for the Federal Reserve building to be changed to a high school or an elementary school.
- The presentation has a map of "projects" downtown which I assume may be for both business and living spaces. I would bet that any buildings slated to be apartments are unlikely to have a large number of apartments that are family-sized.
- Then they have maps of major cities and where schools are located near downtown. First, the Seattle one seems very off to me. Hmm. Second, nearly every city has a water challenge so that might be the reason there aren't more downtown schools.
- the agenda also says: "identify funding sources." First, the district HAS done that and the options aren't good AND, if they pick the obvious one, they will be putting themselves in a somewhat precarious position.
The obvious choice (because it's the easiest) is to get non-voted bonds. The Board can do this on their own, the district would get the money right away and could get started. Speed of renovation and the opening of the school is essential as the building has to be up and running in three years.
But does the district really need ANOTHER situation like the one at headquarters where we are still paying off bonds for that building? Staff doesn't say it in the presentation but they are banking on paying off those bonds with BTA IV money. I am so against this idea. If they do it, I can only say that staff and the Board will be endangering BTA IV because I find it hard to believe everyone who has been waiting for help for their building will hold their nose and vote such a huge sum of money just for one new school. And, if they continue to use BTA as an expansion of BEX and add in $100M for a new high school and now nearly half of BTA would go to renovating/building two new schools, I won't be voting for that BTA.
At the last Board meeting, there were several speakers telling the Board how badly downtown needs a school. (But, if you look at the Downtown Neighborhood Association analysis of how many students there are, it's quite the stretch.) One speaker, Steve Gillespie, said that "plenty of people downtown will give resources." Great, where are they and why haven't they spoken up yet? Because not one single business has ponied up any dollars for something that would benefit businesses downtown.
- And would you look at that; the presentation has an entire timeline mapped out to do the renovation. Staff certainly isn't let grass grow under their feet. But I think this project could end up costing more because staff is already pretty busy with BEX projects. Will anything be put on hold or will they hire more staff?
- of major interest is page 38 of the presentation which is 2022 Enrollment Projections for high school. Houston, we have a problem. Every single high school is projected to be at least 400 over capacity with Ingraham being a whopping 1300 students over capacity. Cleveland may need to be pressed back into service as a regular school (and house STEM as a separate school). When you add up all the capacity, both regular and option, it comes out to the district being about 1900 seats over capacity.
Then the agenda has this cryptic item, "Review/prioritize enrollment capacity needs 2." No idea what staff really means here.
This meeting has a hard stop at 5:30 pm as the Board will then go into Executive Session over "labor negotiations." The presentation is quite length so I imagine there will be little time for Board questions.
One last thing - the agenda says there will be a "recommendation" but it is not in the presentation.
Growth Boundary meeting from 6:30-7:30 pm at Fairmount Park Elementary.
Thursday, October 9th
Audit&Finance Committee Meeting, 4:30-6:30 pm. Agenda not yet available.
Math in Focus "Family University" from 6:30-8:00 pm. Locations:
- Eckstein Middle School Auditorium
- Washington Middle School Lunchroom
- West Seattle High School Auditorium
- Whitman Middle School Auditorium
- Van Asselt Elementary School Auditorium
Professional Development Day - No School
BEX Oversight Committee Meeting from 8:30 am-10:30 am at JSCEE.