Fun fact: turns out that we have been inducting board members incorrectly for the last - what? - 10+ years. Turns out the oath can only be given by a superintendent, judge, principal or assistant principal. Other years, we have seen husbands, wives and even children give the oath. Legal counsel John Cerqui looked up the law and figured it out.
That's why tomorrow - before the board meeting - Patu, Peters and Blanford will take their oath of office again.Director Patu is our director of ceremonies for tonight.
Superintendent Nyland is speaking. He thanked the new board members for stepping up to the task and stepping up to help children. He also thanked the continuing board members.
Scott Pinkham was given the oath first. He had the head of the Duwamish tribe, Cecile Hanson, come forward with his family and witness him signing his official papers.
Rick Burke was next. It's a short and sweet oath and the signing of the papers takes the most time. I'm looking forward to all the new members' remarks which come after everyone has taken the oath.
Jill Geary was third. Geary was all smiles and brought two of her five children, her mom, her campaign manager and her husband.
Last was Leslie Harris, to big applause. She was given the oath by Judge Faith Ireland. Funny moment when the notary public asked for Harris' ID and Harris had to run to her seat to get her brand-new SPS ID.
He greeted everyone in his native language, Nez Perce. Looking forward to working with adults to help students. He talked about the seven generations he wanted to honor- the three before, three after and the current one. He thanked his opponent for his input on Special Ed, said he looked forward to working with the other three new directors and acknowledged the presence of the three continuing directors.
He said he wanted to listen to communities and bring cultural awareness to the district. He thanked his wife and daughters and all the support he has received. He mentioned what one daughter said at the last school board meeting, "Watch out, my dad is on the school board."
He agreed with Pinkham on the honor of being elected. Thanked all the people who supported his campaign and voted for him. He singled out a few people - " Some people to thank and some to blame." Big laugh. He mentioned Kate Martin, Ted Nutting (Ballard high math teacher), Joanne Berett (sp - I'll check that), shout out to entire community.
To improve "we need to identify our problems, it won't be pretty but it has to be done." He said he had been watching and learning from "triumphs and challenges" that they faced.
Biggest thanks to his wife, Linh Co. (He said she was the best part of his Ballard High experience - they were high school sweethearts.)
Hopeful that "drips of funding might turn to dribbles in the next 1,2,5, 10 years. Talked about the No Child Left Behind legislation. He spoke of our growing, prosperous city and said the district could ride the wave or face a wipeout.
He met with Superintendent and met senior staff and is enthused to work with them. He, like Pinkham, talked about community-building.
Thanked all her supporters, especially people she did not know before she ran, and who had faith in her. Glad to learn from them about the needs of the district.
Thanked her husband especially for his sign-placement abilities. Thanked her kids for their patience as well as her mom for being treasurer. Her great campaign manager, Bailey Stobber, also got a shout-out.
She thanked the teachers for their support and was glad to support them as well. She also acknowledged the three continuing directors and her new fellow board members.
Wants to be a voice for families. Wants to hear from parents and public to help keep her on track especially around Special Education issues.
Made a joke about always being at the end of the speaking line-up and how other new directors stole her best lines. It is good to see a great sense of humor from these candidates.
Thanked her sister, Holly, her brother, Laird ("a Republican but still a rockstar").
She thanked the principals and school staffs for their hard work every day. She said she was here to work on their behalf.
"We can do and will do so, so, so much better.
She thanked her husband, Michael, and daughter, Monica.
She thanked the rabble-rousers who will likely find her "a hoot on the dais." She thanked everyone for their honesty in helping her learn more but wants that circle of people who give her input to grow. She made a joke about legislators going to jail if they don't fund McCleary.
She said senior staff and others at JSCEE have been welcoming and warm and said they would all be "a hell of a team" that would do great things.
She had a shout-out to Soup for Teachers and Kids Not Cuts for their work and called it "the start of something big." She expressed concern for alternative education, special education, advanced learning but said equity was important for all children. (She mentioned Pathfinder K-8 and Middle College High School.)