Friday, May 26, 2017

Friday Open Thread

Going to be a beautiful weekend so do put on that sunscreen and/or hat.

I'm hearing about a disturbing slam book at Lowell that has parents concerned.  Any other information about this issue would be welcomed by me (sss.westbrook@gmail.com).  I was surprised to learn that the principal there is Colleen Stump because I thought the district long ago decided she was better not being an administrator.


Director community meetings tomorrow:
Director Patu - 10-11:30 am - Raconteur, 5041 Wilson Ave. S
Director Burke - 2-4 pm -  Greenwood Library, 8016 Greenwood Ave. N. 

Hey, another week, another special session.  And guess what, Governor?  Still nothing done done on McCleary.  

One that subject, from Speaker Frank Chopp:

Speaker Frank Chopp statement regarding Governor Inslee and budget negotiations:
'I thank Governor Inslee for his leadership in moving budget negotiations forward.

As the Governor said, compromise is the key to resolving the budget. The House proposal as it currently stands can’t pass the Senate, and the Senate plan can’t pass the House.

With the Governor’s help, we can reach a budget deal within the next 30 days, as long as all parties are willing to negotiate in good faith. I believe Governor Inslee’s involvement will help ensure all sides work together to find issues we can agree upon, as well as identify those that simply won’t fly in either chamber.

Both sides have been making progress on an education funding plan. We can make the same kind of progress on the state’s operating budget. We look forward to continuing our efforts to hammer out the details as soon as possible.'"
Blah, blah, blah. (And I'm in the 43rd which the Speaker represents.) 

Article from KNKX on how city zoning may be adding to school segregation.

Image may contain: 1 person, textPretty funny feedback on a teacher from a kid who at least knows her history.

What's on  your mind?

31 comments:

Anonymous said...

Wondering how the discussions and decisions will unfold regarding two or three tiers next year and start times now that there has been an apparent epiphany that the funding is not sustainable so two tiers would likely be a one year band aid.

The conversation at the board work session didn't solve anything, so what's next?

It's not looking good for next year....

Wishing Well

Melissa Westbrook said...

Plus, Blanford pointed out that the money they "borrow" from the Economic Stabilization Fund will have to be returning starting in 2019.

The district sure does a lot of finger-crossing that doesn't seem to pay off.

Anonymous said...

There was a comment about changes next year at WMS' HCC program does any know what those changes are?

Yikes

Anonymous said...

One of the changes will be that there will be no designated "HCC" teachers. Every teacher will now teach at least one section of HCC LA / SS / Science. Teachers who have no experience / training in gifted ed will be required to teach HCC whether they want to or not.

-Equity?

Anonymous said...

Melissa, have you ever thought about running against Frank Chopp yourself? I'm serious. You would be a strong candidate and even if you didn't win, you'd likely help force him to shape up on school funding.

Westbrook for Washington

Anonymous said...

Mason Cross:

I vote ice cream. Two scoops. Knowledge retention plus correct application plus courage. Add sprinkles.

-McClureWatcher

Melissa Westbrook said...

Westbrook for Washington, well, that's really kind of you. I think you are right; at least if I ran, I'd get to call him on this issue.

Two Tier$! said...

Two tiers or three? That's what I'm thinking about. When we start school again in just over 3 months, I want to know. Will my kids, both elementary school students, be starting at [three tiers] 7:45 (yawn!) and 9:25? Will one of my young children get out at 2:25 and the other at 4:05? (That gives me a 5 hour work day). That's a 25 hour work week. Minus 75 minutes on Wednesday (for early release), leaves a 23 hour and 45 minute work week.

Or will they both start at [two tiers] 8 and get out at 2:40. That would give me a 6 hour and 40 minute work day. That's a work week of 33 hours and 20 minutes. Minus 75 minutes on Wednesday, leaves a 32 hour and 5 minute work week.

Two tiers: I have 32 hours and 5 minutes to support my family
Three tiers: I have 23 hours and 45 minutes to support my family

One way or the other it will make a huge difference in our family's bottom line and in what our daily schedule looks like.

Anonymous said...

Rumor has it that Brandon Roy will move from Nathan Hale to Garfield, to coach basketball at Garfield. So much for promising to be around to build a program. I can't entirely blame him, he is a Garfield graduate. It will mean Hale will have a new basketball coach for the 6th year.

HP

Katherine said...

Two Tier$!, the argument that you can only work during your child's school day seems to be a self-imposed limitation, entirely separate from the start/end time discussion. Many working families rely on before and/or after school care because the school day is not long enough to cover their full work day.

Melissa Westbrook said...

HP, sorry to say but told you.

Surprised parent said...

The book was a list of kids to hurt or kill. The principal does not want to deal with it.
The problem is a 3 day school trip is planned and parents are nervouse to send kids.
Parents are wanting to meet with the principal and she is becoming hostile. The parents wanted to meet in the library last night and she wouldn't allow it. When asked she gave no reason. So a large group of parents met at a public library.
Parents are discovering that there has been a problem with kids being bullied and hurt.
The district and police have need contacted, but seem to not be responsive to parents.

Two Tier$ said...

@Katherine,
I'm not the only parent in this city who hasn't outsourced the care of my children. Have you never been to a school at drop-off or pick-up time? There's a lot of parents there. At every school in town. Parents who aren't at work. It's not just me.

Former lowell parent said...

I just heard that parents are taking their kids out of Lowell school for their safety. WTF is going on.

Melissa Westbrook said...

Again, I would like to see this book being circulated or any cyber bullying attacks. And Dr. Stump won't have a meeting at school with these parents.

If the district knows this and has offered no assurances to parents - whose kids may be on the trip with other kids who did this - I would be appalled.

It's too late in the day for me to ask at the district (especially with a three-day weekend).

I would tell Lowell parents who are concerned to go to the director community meetings this weekend and tell Burke and Patu their concerns. I would also go on the record with the Board and senior management at:

schoolboard@seattleschools.org

Because if you do that, if anything does happen, the district cannot say they didn't know.

Former Stevens parent said...

It's crazy that Coleen Stump who was a disaster at Stevens would be promoted as opposed to fired. She would lie to us,lie to students, intimidate teachers and just act in an unprofessional way. Her incompetence and dishonesty caused stress amongst teachers, staff and parents. From what I heard and read, Lowell is having similar issues now. Why does the district move around or promote bad principals. It's maddening.

Anonymous said...



@surprised parent

Attorney time!

Seriously, the answer is an attorney. Not the board, they are completely toothless. Whether or not they are up for election; whether or not they care; they can't do anything other than wring their hands and wait for a self-serving Friday Memo to mansplain in a vague and lame wordsalad.

This needs to be resolved immediately (I am not telling you anything you don't already know).

After 14 student years in the SPS system, I can tell you the ONLY thing that gets their attention and gets a resolution done is that which includes the calling card of an attorney.

The district doesn't care about kids,their mandate is not to care, their mandate is to comply with the law. That is their only deliverable. What they do care about: political optics. Negative coverage in the Seattle Times hits them where they live. They quake in the boots when they think they have to show up in front of an administrative law judge (because then they are no longer in control, and can't obfuscate, delay, or deny. They actually have to answer someone (no, not you, the judge). That creates a different attitude because they are no longer on home turf. They have to play by someone else's rules, and it is remarkable the night and day difference.

It is terrible that they can't just be counted on to do the right thing, but there you have it. With SPS, it is the outside attorney thing that gets their attention. You might think this is hostile or too aggressive or disproportional, but it really is not: it is about professionalizing the circumstance to move the ball forward so that children are done right by.

FIX IT

Jet City mom said...

It is being reported that Roy is the new Garfield coach.

http://kpug1170.com/news/007700-report-brandon-roy-named-new-garfield-hoops-coach/

Melissa Westbrook said...

Told you he wouldn't stay at Hale.

not mc troll said...

hum are you saying the br lied mw? a lot of things changed over the last year that if not would have meant he may still be there.

nh are us / world hs champions in b-ball. yeah. and yeah to bhs, too for robotics. but it is hard to take the "i'm sorry to say it" and then you say it twice. nbd things change. you are not that sorry though.

i am reading now that follmer wants all teachers ready to teach hcc kids. great! so does that mean that the pd that the teachers receive will include 2+ grades below and 2+ grades above a range of 4-8 years of achievement? this may have been accepted before meany but now we seeing a huge change at wms. i really thought things could get no worse. wrong. nyland and tolley are out to get rid of hcc and follmer and katie mae are just eager ponds to do just that.

it isn't easy to teach hcc. that is why we worked to not split it. now it is in 3e 3ms and 2hs... soon it is in every school. but it is nothing. oh well here comes more kids to private making for increased 2e, sped and frl percentages. great job sps. you know how to alienate families.

no caps

Patrick said...

Ice cream, definitely.

Anonymous said...

Colleen Stump was also a failure as an assistant principal at Whittier Elementary, and before that, an abject failure as director of special education. She must be good at making the right friends. No other explanation for her continued employment at sps.

Personal Experience

Anonymous said...

@no caps--I wouldn't send my elementary kiddo to a school with 755-800 kids, including 8-9 3rd or 4th grade classes. That environment is alienating and a bigger concern to me than having multiple locations. Face it--there are more kids either wanting or needing HCC. It is irresponsible to ignore this and not prepare for growth. It's like never buying your child the next shoe size because you've decided you want them to always fit in that favorite shoe you bought them last year. The shoe doesn't fit!!!!

Pro split

Lynn said...

Garfield's worst counselor strikes again: http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/education/counselor-at-seattles-garfield-high-school-keeps-job-despite-financial-fraud-fine/

Watching said...


Garfield's counselor has twice been fined by state regulators for selling stocks without a broker’s license.

http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/education/counselor-at-seattles-garfield-high-school-keeps-job-despite-financial-fraud-fine/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=article_left_1.1

According to OSPI:

"Violating state finance laws does not necessarily bar Willis from holding onto a job providing guidance in schools, according to Nate Olson, a spokesman for the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction.
“There are specific offenses that would trigger suspension and generate an investigation,” Olson said. “Fraud is not on that list.”

It is time for laws to be changed. Willis should not be guiding students.

Melissa Westbrook said...

Watching, I agree. He is not trustworthy.

Anonymous said...

I thought lawlessness and giving people the bird was status quo at Garfield. What's new about this story? They can't build Lincoln any sooner and I truly hope the place HCC and an international school there, similar to Bellevue International or Kirkland's International Community School, or maybe we can get our own version of Aviation Highschool for all of the tech and engineering minded kids. Why not?

Enough!

Melissa Westbrook said...

Aviation High School is open to Seattle students but yes, the location is faraway.

not mc troll said...

Pro split,

put down the idiot juice please it is affecting the way you post. shoe size has nothing to do with hostile admins trying to undermine hcc.there is too much lost when you split and if you have no curriculum, no established pd and hostile principals. so tm and wms are on a race to the bottom. good luck families. but you think cascadia is relevant here it is not... not yet. it is going from self contained to self contained times two. should be no big deal. but wms which is becoming near-hcc and after tm and ghs trounce their way to just gen ed education because why? because they are south of the ship canal? there have been so many promises made that are not even close to being met. why? does nyland have stock in seattle prep? he governs like he or tolley do. they have no concern or financial for sps.

no caps.

Anonymous said...

@no caps-TM was a bad idea. The studies they payed for proved this to be true. I think if Director Geary had her way HCC would have been at Olympic Hills to expand the pillaging. So, you are correct and I stand with you on the utter dissatisfaction with how the program has been handled overall. To improve on the shoe analogy: you can't judge til you've walked a day in their shoes. So, sorry.

Pro *Cascadia*Split

not mc troll said...

no we are both shoe-less pcs. now we have our kid run against the burning tar that is sps without shoes. with the first splits there was guarantees about curriculum without being provided.