Community Meeting on Assignment Plan at Rainier Beach High School, starting at 6:30 pm. This is the last of the meetings on this topic. I still maintain this was window-dressing and not about staff getting and receiving real input on this topic. I'll have a separate thread on what readers have said but it seems clear that the waitlist is still an issue.
Wednesday, Nov. 18th
Board meeting starting at 4:15 pm. Something of an end of an era for this particular make-up for the Seattle School Board. Agenda.
I do want to publicly say thank you to each of the Board members who are leaving - Harium Martin-Morris, Sherry Carr, Sharon Peaslee and Marty McLaren. I walked Fremont with Sherry Carr to help her get elected. I worked on the campaigns of both Sharon Peaslee and Marty McLaren (her first one.) It takes courage to even stand up and run for office and even more courage and energy to serve. I certainly have disagreed with them on many issues but I truly thank them for their service.
Action (Vote) Items - These include:
- the Assignment Plan changes. I think the Board should vote no if only because the quite obvious attempt by staff to hastily stage some community meetings. I think staff thought they could just rearrange the SAP by calling it "streamlining" while trying to control the enrollment issues by changing the waitlist date. I still think it possible to change that waitlist date. But really, given that the boundaries WILL be changing and programs like AL seem to be changing, the whole thing will probably need overhauling. And we have just the new Board to do it.
- Bell Times - well, it has been very quiet since staff whittled that Tier 3 down to about 13 schools. There are many who believe it is better to take this step (and I would agree) BUT there should be a commitment into an on-going vision of getting to two tiers.
- Superintendent raise/extension. I find this shocking because of the lack of data on Nyland's performance, the small amount of time he has been here and the droning from staff and Board about lack of funding. (I'll note there is a document attached to this BAR that appears to be an evaluation but is virtually unreadable. But that may be by design.) I have said this often but I'll say it again: when the district doesn't want to do something, there's no money. When they do, they find money.
- Authorization for BTA IV levy. Sure, the Board can (and will) authorize this but staff sneaking in that they rearranged dollars to help pay off the bonds on JSCEE into BTA IV is wrong. A Board dedicated to transparency would at LEAST have directed the Superintendent to consider a press release to the public. But again, this is just one big bucket of money that, in the end, staff pretty much rearranges as they like.
- SMART goals vote. Well, this should be interesting with competing amendments over which communities of color get called out by name. Political correctness, clarification or just plain politics? Without much publicly said, it's hard to gauge.
I don't see anything particularly worrying about the items on the Introduction list.
Thursday, Nov. 19th
Operations Committee meeting at JSCEE, from 4:30-6:30 pm. No agenda yet available.
Board Special Meeting: Work Session, Board 2014/15 Annual Self Evaluation, 5:30-6:30 pm. Yes, those meeting times do conflict so I'll have to ask about this one. You'd think the Annual Self-Evaluation would come at the end of a school year and not just as some on the Board are leaving.
Saturday, Nov. 21st
Community meeting with Director Blanford from 10:00-11:20 am at the Douglass Truth library.
Community meeting with Director Patu at Cafe Vitta from 10:00-11:30 am.
There will be no more district meetings - Board, Work Session, Committee or Community - until December 1 when the newly elected directors take the oath of office.