Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Tuesday Open Thread

We will hear the President's thoughts in the State of the Union address tonight.

Let's hear your thoughts here.


Anonymous said...

My though is about rigor and opportunity at high schools.

Is there room next year for all the students who are currently guaranteed a spot in the HCP at Garfield?

Is the district planning on forcing students in the HCP to go to their neighborhood high school?

Will additional AP classes be expanded at all high schools in order to meet the needs of HC students who were not in the HCC in middle school? Garfield"s offerings are clearly superior, yet HC students are required to be served at all schools, so where is the AP Physics at West Seattle or Ballard?

Finally, what about music?
Washington and Garfield followed by Eckstein and Roosevelt, have programs that need to reproduced in all high school service areas.

I'm not advocating tearing down any program, just bringing other programs up to the higher level so kids who are choosing not to cohort in middle school, as well as other students who have not tested into the HCP yet need the challenge, can take classes that are appropriate. Music programs also need to be equitable across comparably sized schools.

Compare the Garfield website, especially the academic offerings, to any other SPS high school. They should all look like Garfield's.

Why doesn't Roosevelt have honors classes?

Things need to be standardized across schools.


Anonymous said...

I went to the Washington State PTA Focus Day event yesterday, which was better attended than it has ever been before.

One thing confused me though. When we were on the steps of the capitol listening to various PTA officials and legislators, one of the PTA people called out and thanked the government relations staff person from League of Education Voters as if there was some sort of formal relationship with LEV. I thought it was very peculiar, as PTA fired its government relations person and insisted that our work be grassroots, and then there's LEV which has little to no constituency as an organization and different agendas and different agenda-setting procedures, and yet this organization was our "partner?" How so?


Melissa Westbrook said...

PTA Mom, you'd have to ask state PTA leadership who, to me, march to their own beat (and not that of membership). Why LEV is a "partner" is a good question.

Anonymous said...

Center school students walked out last Friday to protest the Greenberg suspension at headquarters.

They presented administrators with a petition signed by hundreds of students to let their teacher begin teaching on the first day of the semester.

center supporter

Pro-sleep Mom said...

There is a Town Hall talk on 'Perils of Standardized Testing' tonight:

The presenter is the lead education reporter for NPR.

Also, more research was recently released linking inadequate and disturbed sleep in teens with alcohol binging/alcoholism:

And I would also like to thank Eden of Seattle Council PTSA for her work in rallying many legislative chairs and PTA members across the city, leading to over 100 Seattle attendees at yesterdays Focus Day in Olympia, the strongest Seattle presence in years. It's clear that inadequate funding is at the root of many of our problems, and we need to keep the pressure on the legislature to change this. (I know, we're preaching to the choir with many of these legislators, but they do need to know how important is it to us.)

mirmac1 said...

Yes, I agree. Eden, thank you for your hard work!

mirmac1 said...

Action alert: Hearing on seclusion and restraint bill Jan 26

HB 1240 is legislation that would improve statewide policy on restraint or isolation of students in public schools. WAAA has been working hard to make sure legislators hear how important this bill is to students with autism and their families. On January 26, HB 1240 will be heard in the House Education Committee. Statewide parent testimony is needed.

If your child or another student you know has experienced harmful seclusion and restraint, please consider attending this hearing to support HB1240. If you can’t be there, you can send your written testimony to the committee. Go to link below to learn how to testify.


Watching said...

LEV has launched a campaign to include Early Learning in the definition of Basic Education and voters approved smaller class sizes. How do you think this is going to work-out?

Watching said...

The Washington State House Education Committee will be debating Common Core today.

EdisMoreImportant said...

Are corporations and millionaires stealing you child's instructional time?

You'd better believe it, and it is NOT OK. Heard about a school this morning that shortened their social justice assembly to have a mini-rally for the Seahawks. Great article below.


Eric B said...

Just got an email that there was a lockdown at Interagency in S Seattle (3528 S Ferdinand). There was apparently a student with a gun. Police arrested the student outside of the school.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Ed, for posting the HuffPo article. It was hilarious.

--- swk

Linh-Co said...

Another article on testing and the changes of the SAT.


Anonymous said...

The McDonald IA fundraising page has quite a blurb: "the mean MAP score for math the Fall and Winter for all McD first graders as a group is 95%". They go on to point out that the "mean for all first graders in the Seattle School District, by contrast, is less than 55%."

Seems pretty smarmy to attribute this to IAs rather than the extreme privilege of the families that attend McDonald.

~~For Real

mirmac1 said...

Surprise! Pettigrew files bill to appoint Seattle School Board positions.


Lynn said...

The message the board needs to hear is that this is a direct result of their failure to hire a superintendent who enforces policy and requires central administration staff to focus on priorities. (Hint - preschool is not one of those priorities.)

Are they going to get that message and respond to it?

Anonymous said...

Which SAT will be administered this year, old or new? Thanks!

Chris S.

Anonymous said...

Old. New doesn't come in until 2016.


Anonymous said...

WEA has an automated email to legislators about funding smaller class sizes, teacher COLA and healthcare benefits (COLA and healthcare haven't gone up in 6 years for school employees). Here's their blurb:

I just emailed Gov. Inslee and my legislators and told them to fully fund educator compensation and smaller class sizes for our kids. You should, too! We need to make sure they fully fund K-12 public schools when they write the state budget. Click here to take action: http://action.washingtonea.org/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=10712

Glad I left

Anonymous said...

Whether the McDonald 95% MAP score is due to IAs or due to the socioeconomic demography doesn't make a big difference. In order to hire IAs you need $. I would assume students would have a better chance of doing well with a student-teacher ratio that is effectively much lower due to the IAs. Plus learning two languages probably amps up the learning process for most students. For students with autism or dyslexia, maybe not... So basically, the message they sent is kind of a "What do you expect?" message. Most of the kids come from stable homes that are enriched with learning. I'm sure not all families are in that category, but probably more than the schools with the 50% pass rate.

Anonymous said...

What exactly does "the mean MAP score for math the Fall and Winter for all McD first graders as a group is 95%" even mean? I don't think it's meaningful to average percentiles. Am I wrong in thinking this doesn't make sense?


Bill said...

McDonald and JSIS should be the example for every school. An IA in every classroom, rigorous language immersion and high expectations.

Let's take the McClury money and make every school like those two with schools that can afford a thousand per kid coughing up like them and the rest getting what they need.

Like HCC, don't destroy what is good, simply spread that goodness around and at the same time make these programs more reflective of the district by adding poor and SpED and ELL kids to their cohorts

Anonymous said...

13 yo Seattle student, Eliana Perkins, missing since 1/16/2015. There are good photos of her and more details on fox 13. For whatever reasons, didn't get Amber alert status nor "breaking news" press play.



Anonymous said...

I have seen SPD tweets on her but you are right, no Amber alert and not much other news on her.


Ragweed said...

It is very unusual to have an amber alert for a teen if there is not strong evidence of an abduction. The assumption for most teen missing-person reports is that they ran away. It is actually unusual for the police to be giving a teen missing-persons report as much attention as they seem to be in this case.

Anonymous said...

Seattle Times says district with board's approval reversed previous course and is now bidding on the Fed building downtown. It's an auction with minimum $1 mil bid and unlike before, no mandate on how fast the district would have to build.


TechyMom said...

What Bill said.

I'll add that from my perspective, SPS seems hell-bent on stamping out excellence, and even adequacy, wherever they can. This drives families that can scrape together tuition out of the public schools. Rather than creating equity, it adds to the separation of have and have-not.

mirmac1 said...

Confused. Great questions, particularly in light of OSPI's CPR findings that SPS really does not follow the law with respect to Title III, which requires that ELL students be measure with respect to AMAOs. When you consider the minuscule portion of ELL students (but still some) that DeBell and friends managed to funnel into non FRL schools wishing to tap Fed funds for IAs, that would encourage measuring "mean MAP score for math the Fall and Winter (for all McD first graders!) as a group" to imply that the LI miracle lifts all boats for ELL, as long as you don't bother measuring.....

Anonymous said...

@ mirmac1, I don't think misunderstood what "Confused" was asking. It seems to have been more of a statistical question, similar to one I had raised elsewhere. You made it into something else, but it's an interesting something else, so I'll bite!

Can you please explain what you mean by "SPS really does not follow the law with respect to Title III, which requires that ELL students be measure with respect to AMAOs." Is SPS not calculating AMAO data appropriately? I saw something with 2013-2104 AMAO data, which had the district meeting AMAO 1 and 2 goals, but not AMAO-3. AMAO-3 would seem to be the most relevant to your concern noted above, but I don't see how the McDonald situation plays into that. What AMAO data should be reported instead?

Also, the part of your comment re: DeBell and funneling confuses me. Are you suggesting that ELLs shouldn't be allowed to go to schools where they only represent a small portion of the student population or where there aren't many FRL students? Perhaps your concern is that ELL data don't show up on the individual school report cards when the groups are too small, is that it? Those data will still be included in the overall district ELL stats though--and I don't think anyone interprets the lack of ELL reporting for an individual school (when numbers are too small) to mean that everything is peachy.

If you are simply suggesting there needs to be greater analysis and evaluation of individual schools and program data--for ELL students and otherwise--I'm in full agreement.


Anonymous said...

Oops. "I don't think misunderstood" should be "I think you misunderstood."