Sunday, January 17, 2016

Seattle Schools This Week

Here's a link to the district's Spring Bell Time Adjustment Volunteer List Survey.  
Several schools have indicated that they have been having ongoing conversations about participating in a Spring Bell Time Adjustment Volunteer List, with some having already coalesced around a preference. Other schools have asked for additional support to make this decision including an online survey. This survey is available from January 6, 2016 to January 22, 2016 for parents and staff to provide feedback on whether there is a preference for an earlier tier, or to remain in the 3rd tier.
If you are a 3rd Tier School (List the schools) Please take a few minutes to complete the following questions on your preference for your school start time.

Monday, Jan. 18th

Please note, holiday or not, the School Board office IS taking sign-ups for public testimony on Monday, starting at 8 am, for the Board meeting on Wednesday.  E-mail or phone 252-0040. 

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day - Considered a day for public service so consider doing the following with your kids: picking up trash around your block/school block, e-mailing your legislative reps on an issue that matters to you, ditto city officials. Red Tricycle has 10 things to do with the kids including free admission to the Washington State History Museum and free admission to three of our state's national parks. 

The MLK Seattle group has a number of events including the traditional day at Garfield High School.

There's a free showing of the documentary, Most Likely to Succeed, at Roosevelt High School, with the program starting at 6:30 pm.  It looks like there are some tickets still available
The feature-length documentary Most Likely To Succeed examines the history of education in the United States, revealing the growing shortcomings of conventional education methods and testing in today's innovative world. The film explores compelling new approaches in project-based learning that aim to revolutionize teaching as we know it. After seeing this film, the way you think about "school" will never be the same.
Wednesday. Jan. 21st  

Board meeting, starting at 4:15 pm.  Agenda.

To note: there are two fairly long staff presentations during the Superintendent's comments and, as well, the Superintendent usually has fairly length comments of his own so I have my doubts that public testimony will start right at five p.m. 

However, there are only four Action items and one Intro item so it should be a shorter than usual Board meeting.

Financial disclosure documents from the Board and senior staff.  I note that Director Blanford lists "Lighthouse Consulting" as where he works (as co-owner) but there are a couple of "Lighthouse Consulting" companies (including one in Seattle) but none list him.  I'm guessing he doesn't have a website which seems odd given he started the company in 2011.  He also filled the form out in a manner so you can't tell who worked for SPS when SPS used the firm's services. 

Director Patu also had some less-than-complete filing issues when she put question marks by relatives who work for SPS. 

Superintendent Nyland's form has some interest items for board membership.  He's on the board of a nonprofit based in Slovenia called Quality Schools International.  This is interesting:
QSI is a partner organization with NWEA and offers the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) computerized adaptive standardized test at all school locations .
He also on the board of the Kellogg Fellows Leadership Alliance, another international group made up of former Kellogg Fellows (fellowship around leadership development.) 

Pegi McEvoy also has another job as a Department of Ed consultant.

Thursday, Jan. 21st

Operations Committee Meeting, agenda not yet available.

A couple of good ed events you might attend this week on the same night.

One is the Seattle Times' Ignite Education Lab at Town Hall.  Not sure if there are any free tickets left but you can buy one for $10 at the door.  
Teachers, parents, principals, and students, present quick, hilarious, inspiring—even surprising—stories about what it’s like to teach or learn. This Ignite-style program follows the same format as traditional Ignite talks. Each presenter must use 20 slides that automatically advance every 15 seconds.
The 46th Dems are having their General Meeting with the topic of public education.
Public School funding is of special scrutiny this month, as Seattle voters head to the polls on February 9th to vote on two levies proposed by the Seattle Public Schools.

Our panel speakers will address the impact of the State Supreme Court McCleary decision and the current impasse with the state legislature on school district growth and funding, as well as teacher compensation and special educational services for students and families.

Our panel members are Joanna Cullen, an education chair for the League of Women Voters; Melissa Westbrook, writer/moderator for the Seattle Schools Community Forum; David Spring, teacher; Sue Peters, Vice President of the Seattle School Board; Jill Geary, new member of the Seattle School Board; and Alex Bond the spokesman for the School Bond Levies.
Saturday, Jan. 23rd

Community Meeting with Director Blanford at the Douglass Truth Library from 10 am to 11:30 am.


Watching said...

Stephan Blanford needs to fill out his Statement of Financial Interest and Potential Conflict form- appropriately.(!) He left out significant amounts of information.

It is very difficult to find information on Stephan Blanford's consulting firm.

Anonymous said...

Hmm... well I have always hated a mystery so did some looking. Blanford's firm is actually registered with the State of Washington as a sole proprietorship under the name Blanford & Blanford Consulting. That's the legal name of the company, according to their registration with the WA Dept. of Revenue. They appear use Lighthouse consulting informally (that might have been the original name but isn't the current legal name of their business).

Because its a sole proprietorship it wouldn't show up in the Sect. of State's corporation database. But I agree with Watching - his form seems slightly lacking in concrete information.