Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Tuesday Open Thread

Some sad news on two fronts.

One item is this from Ravenna Next Door on Sunday:
My daughter and her friends were playing at Bryant this morning when they texted me with concern about glass and jewelry, and "gun powder" on the playground.

I walked over to see for myself and sure enough there were empty beer cans, stolen jewelry and a pile of white powder with a razor blade, etc. I called the police who came surprisingly quickly and confirmed the white substance was Meth. Ugh. They took it to the station for evidence but left the jewelry and glass suggesting that I call the parks to come and clean it up. A very surprising site to say the least. Still researching who to call for clean up.
The second item is about a beloved staff member at Cascadia:
Allen Greenberg, beloved recess monitor at Cascadia Elementary in Seattle, passed away unexpectedly.  Allen spent his life giving to others - always looking out for the less fortunate.  He often stopped by Solid Ground to pick up food for the homeless and volunteered his time to help those less fortunate after recess duty. He had an impact on everyone he came in contact with. 
Funds will be used to help with funeral expenses, including travel to New York for his daughter and granddaughter.  Anything you can give will be appreciated.  
A big shout-out to all the students who came out yesterday to Olympia to advocate for full funding for public education.  I especially want to call out the many students from Garfield, including the football team, who went because as one parent at the WPD Facebook page said:
Super inspiring to see these kids putting in the work for funds that most likely won't even affect them.
 I see there is a Board meeting tomorrow night.  Agenda
I wish I could ask some questions about the financial reports annual report - there's some interesting figures in there that I don't understand (like the ASB fund.)  On the Assessment Annual report, there were these items of interest:
In place of Amplify, SBA interims for 16-17 School Year
Convene Assessment Steering Committee for 2016-2017 School Year
2016-2017 Program Review; Two programs were selected for this year's pilot based on review of our criteria**
1. Spectrum/Advanced Learners 
2. International Schools/Dual Language Immersion
Want to know what that ** notation is?  For the 2016-2017 pilot year, the degree to which program leaders were identified as willing and collaborative partners in the review process was a key criterion considered.

Wait, what?  The district has to ask program directors to cooperate in a program review and cross their fingers that the directors will be "willing and collaborative partners?" 

So remember that the BEX IV Contingency fund is 90% used up (even though they are only thru 50% of the projects) and the Capital folks are getting a "loan" from the General Fund because of that?

Well, they are asking for at least $240,000 because that's how much Cedar Park's project is over its budget.  It's amusing to see that they did not include portables in the budget (even though they knew they would be using them) nor sidewalk improvements (I'm guessing they thought the City would pay for this) and they didn't include furniture or technology.

What's on your mind?


Charlie Mas said...

This continues to astonish me.

Policy 2090 is abundantly clear: every academic program is supposed to get an annual review. This is not in dispute. Yet, oddly, the superintendent refuses to review programs and, just as oddly, the Board is okay with that.

NESeattleMom said...

Re: Bryant Why the police didn't take the jewelry for evidence seems like a bad decision. And not sweeping up the broken glass on a children's play area seems bad too. Why didn't they call SPS or Seattle Parks.

Anonymous said...

Seattle King County NAACP to Honor Dr. King’s Legacy Introduce a Resolution to Seattle Public Schools

Seattle, WA--On Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, the Seattle King County NAACP will unveil a resolution advocating that Seattle Public Schools make ethnic studies a required class. Closing the opportunity gap is a critical focus of the NAACP and on Monday the branch will uphold Dr. King’s legacy by emphasizing how important it is that all students see themselves reflected in the curriculum of our public schools.


-just fyi

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure how accurate this story is, but it looks promising.


stagnate SPS

Lynn said...

No mention of what we'd have to drop from the current curriculum to add an ethnic studies class.

Lynn said...

The Operations Committee will be discussing the board action report for 2017/18 capacity management on Thursday. The list of needed classrooms and potential solutions is the last page in this document.

They plan to reuse existing portables currently on the Boren, McGilvra, Schmitz Park, Hamilton, Washington and Whitman campuses. Schools anticipated to receive these portables are:

Blaine K-8 (1)
Fairmount Park (1)
Genesee Hill (2)
John Rogers (1)
Leschi (1)
North Beach (1)
Northgate (1)
Viewlands (1)
Mercer (1)
Ballard (4)
Ingraham (4)
Roosevelt (4)
Bridges Transition Program (4)

Olympic View and West Seattle Elementary will reclaim space used for childcare.

Finally, Garfield will need an additional 8 classrooms. This is a problem for which there is no capital solution provided. (Once again, I think the empty classrooms at NOVA could be used by Garfield until Lincoln opens.)

Charlie Mas said...

I can just see Garfield classes sprawled out on the couches at NOVA. Maybe some of the Garfield students will discover why the NOVA mascot is a dead rat.

Anonymous said...

"The Licton Springs encampment will have minimal entry requirements in order to better serve people with substance-abuse and behavioral disorders.

Lee Bruch, a neighbor active in Licton Springs, said he worries about that sort of encampment being close to a public-schools campus scheduled to open soon." ST 1/18/17

Oh yes those street people with behavioral issues right next to RESMS. How progressive.

RESMS Parent

Anonymous said...

The speakers list for tonight's board meeting includes several parents from Loyal Heights. Amendment 1, by Director Pinkham, proposes a 3-up model (3 classrooms per grade, capacity 500) instead of a 4-up model (4 classrooms per grade, capacity 660). They currently have around 450 students. The justification is maintaining enough playground space per student. I'm curious how the outdoor space at Loyal Heights with a 4-up model compares to the space Lincoln has had all these years, or to other newly renovated sites such as Pinehurst. When the district is growing, it's difficult to imagine not adding capacity with each renovation or upgrade. Anyone know more?


Charlie Mas said...

It should be noted, by a Board Director if not by Mr. Starosky, that a number of the schools that I noted had neglected advanced learners in their CSIPs still neglect advanced learners in their CSIPs. This includes a number of designated Spectrum sites.

mirmac1 said...

Board meetings now bore me. The School Board has made it abundantly clear that they have NO interest in holding staff accountable to laws, outcomes, oversight or equity - at least with respect to students with disabilities: leave them at the bottom of the gap.

Perhaps they agree with Betsy DeVos that its best left to others to decide. Somehow they feel their hands are tied (or figure leave enforcement to disinterested civil servants at OSPI/OCR/etc). Maybe they're really gullible to exaggerated staff reports of tremendous cost growth, yet look to accelerate whole new buildings and pathways, or "study" cutting a tier of busing - because their 1st priority is to the squeakiest wheels. I'll leave them to their exigencies.

Charlie Mas said...

The discussion of CSIPs and the discussion of the Performance Evaluations were the same:

"You're not meeting the baseline expectations, but you're doing so much better than you were doing two years ago that we're actually pleased."

Wow. Great. Instead of being 60 feet underwater they are only 30 feet underwater and might break the surface in another two or three years.

Melissa Westbrook said...

I'm with Mirmac1; Board meetings are just not worth going to. If staff does slightly better, the Board is overjoyed and that's that.

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