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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Program Placement decisions memo

Here is the memo with the program placement decisions that were due in December:


Memorandum
To:
Superintendent Manhas
From: Carla Santorno, Mark Green, Michelle Corker-Curry, Courtney Jones
CC: Pat Sander, Ruth Medsker, Patrick Johnson, Gloria Mitchell, Louis Martinez, Shannon McMinimee, Linda Sebring, Nan Stavnshoj, Holly Ferguson, Duggan Harman, Kathy Johnson, Tracy Libros, Rachel Cassidy, Hajara Rahim, Fred Stephens, Ed Heller, Dave Anderson, Ammon McWashington Linda Hoste, Colleen Stump, School Principals
Date: December 15, 2006
Re: Program Placement Recommendations for the 2007-2008 School Year
________________________________________________________
The following program placement recommendations are for implementation in the 2007-2008 school year. The committee works to recommend the placement of programs in support of school transformation and academic achievement efforts; to place programs equitably across the District ; to place programs where students reside; to utilize physical space effectively and to ensure that space needs are met across the District.

The committee makes program location recommendations to the Superintendent, who, pursuant to School Board Policy F21.00, has ultimate decision making authority related to program placement. With the emphasis on providing the most cost-effective alternatives, portable and facility modifications are recommended only where definite space issues exist.

All recommendations fall under at least one of the following categories:

○ Special Education
○ Bilingual Programs
○ Advanced Learning
○ New Programs
○ Portable and Facility Requests
○ Pending/Ongoing Program Placement Requests


Focus on Consolidation and Closure
This year the committee focused primarily on the schools affected by consolidation and closure.
The committee limited the scope of recommendations due to the number of changes required as part of this process. Therefore, most recommendations pertain to elementary schools, and facility modifications are limited to the schools affected by consolidation and closure so the work can be completed for opening of schools in 2007-08.

The “Superintendent’s Final Recommendations on School Closure and Consolidation: Phase I,” published on July 5, 2006, and the School Board Motion of July 26, 2006 adopting the Superintendent’s Final Recommendations with certain modifications (in particular, the decision not to merge Viewlands and Greenwood, and the Board’s subsequent vote to merge Viewlands and Broadview Thompson), identified placements for most, but not all, programs. The programs that were not sited through the consolidation and closure determination by the School Board include: Fairmount Park Behavior Intervention program, Rainier View Head Start, Whitworth Low Incidence A program, Viewlands Special Education preschool, and all programs located at the John Marshall building. The Superintendent’s Final Recommendations contemplated that the ORCA Academically/Behaviorally Challenged program would move with the school to the Whitworth building, however, it was subsequently determined that space will not be available for that program once ORCA grows into a K-8.

The committee reviewed placements for these programs, with the exception of the programs located at Marshall, and the recommendations for placements are attached. As set forth in the Superintendent’s Final Recommendations, the Marshall program is currently under review. Once this review is completed the locations for the programs in the Marshall building will be identified on a separate program placement timeline.

Communication
District Staff:
Once the recommendations are finalized and approved, the official notification will be sent out from Chief Academic Officer, Carla Santorno. An email will be sent to the program placement committee, Instructional Directors, senior leadership team, to all school principals and program managers.

Families:
The Special Education and Enrollment Planning Departments will send out letters to families of Special Education students who currently attend a school that is closing but who will not attend the receiving school due to the placement of the Special Education program they attend. Memos explaining the recommendations will be sent from the Special Education Department to all schools sending or receiving programs. A summary of this information will be made available on the Books and Bricks (consolidation and closure) website in the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section. This information will be included in the 2007-08 Enrollment Guides for Families.



PROGRAM PLACEMENT COMMITTEE
RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE 2007-2008 SCHOOL YEAR
SPECIAL EDUCATION

The schools listed below are receiving Special Education programs from schools that are being consolidated or closed. For a list of programs that will be offered at the newly consolidated schools see Appendix 1.

Schools Receiving Programs from Schools that are Consolidating or Closing

Program
Fairmount Park: Intermediate Behavior Intervention Program
Proposed Placement
Gatewood
Recommendation
Recommend placement of Fairmount Park Intermediate Behavior Intervention Program at Gatewood. This program was not sited during the consolidation and closure process so possible locations were visited and reviewed prior to this recommendation.
Approved
R. Manhas
Program
Whitworth: Intermediate Low Incidence A
Proposed Placement
Brighton
Recommendation
Recommend placement of Whitworth Intermediate Low Incidence A at Brighton. This program was not sited during the consolidation and closure process so possible locations were visited and reviewed prior to this recommendation.
Approved
R. Manhas
Program
Rainier View: Head Start
Proposed Placement
Emerson
Recommendation
Recommend placement of Rainier View Head Start at Emerson as part of the merger of the two schools.
Approved
R. Manhas
Program
Viewlands: Special Education Preschool
Proposed Placement
Whittier
Recommendation
Recommend placement of Viewlands Special Education Preschool at Whittier. This program was not sited during the consolidation and closure process so possible locations were visited and reviewed prior to this recommendation.
Approved
R. Manhas
Program
Orca: Primary Academically/Behaviorally Challenged (ABC) program
Proposed Placement
Hawthorne
Recommendation
Recommend placement of Orca Primary Academically/ Behaviorally Challenged program at Hawthorne. This is a change from Superintendent’s Final Recommendation. There is not room for this program, and the two medically fragile classes that will remain at Whitworth, and for program to grow to K-8.
Approved
R. Manhas
SPECIAL EDUCATION

The schools listed below are recommendations for Special Education that are not part of the closure and consolidation process. The rationale for these recommendations is included below.

Program
Lowell: Special Education Programs (various levels)
Proposed Placement
N/A
Recommendation
Recommend that no programs be moved out of Lowell for the 2007-08 school year. This is a change from the preliminary recommendation concerning the relocation of Special Education programs currently sited at Lowell Elementary. A preliminary recommendation was made out of concern for student access to typically developing peers. Upon review this preliminary recommendation was revised. The final recommendation is to use the 2007-08 year as a planning year to review possible placements for the various programs that are currently housed at Lowell.
Approved
R. Manhas
Program
Wilson-Pacific: Special Education Preschools
Proposed Placement
Greenwood
Recommendation
Recommend that the Wilson-Pacific Special Ed Preschools move intact to Greenwood. Last year (05-06) we did not recommend this move because no options for placements were identified. The Citizen’s Advisory Committee on Consolidation and Closure recommended that the District consider a relocation of the programs currently at Wilson-Pacific, and through the closure and consolidation process Greenwood was identified as an appropriate site with capacity for additional special education programs. Several schools were visited and reviewed prior to this recommendation. The move is recommended so that the students can have access to a typical school environment. The program will require the use of four classrooms on the first floor of the building (3 for classrooms, 1 for OT/PT). The OT/PT equipment will be moved and installed at Greenwood. They are moving intact so that the teachers can continue to collaborate to meet the unique needs of these students, and this also allows for the move and facility modification costs to be minimized.
Approved
R. Manhas
Program
Maple: Behavior Intervention Program
Proposed Placement
N/A
Recommendation
Request Not Considered for the 2007-08 school year. Maple submitted a program placement request form asking that their Special Education Behavior Intervention Program be moved to a different school. This year the committee’s primary focus was on identifying locations for programs affected by the closure process, therefore this request was not considered for the 2007-08 school year. This request can be considered in the future as part of the program placement process.
Approved
R. Manhas

BILINGUAL PROGRAMS

Program
New Program: Dual Language (Spanish/English)
Proposed Placement
Concord
Recommendation
Recommend implementation of a Spanish/English dual language immersion program at Concord beginning with two sections of kindergarten in 2007-08. The new dual language program will grow and add one grade level each year until it becomes a K-5 program. The school will maintain one class of traditional general education at all grade levels for students who are not interested in the dual language program. This academic model has been shown to be the most promising means for closing the achievement gap for English language learners while enhancing the opportunities for all students in the program to develop strong bilingual and bi-literacy skills.

The demographics of Concord Elementary (60% Latino, 48% English language learners, 89% free or reduced lunch) make it an ideal site for this program. It will meet the needs of the students and will help to close the achievement gap.

*See Appendix 2 and Appendix 3 for more information.
Approved
R. Manhas
OTHER PROGRAM REQUESTS

Program
T.T. Minor: Preschool
Proposed Placement
N/A
Recommendation
● Recommend extending the Montessori program to include 3rd grade. The District will continue to fund the 1.0 Montessori FTE, but any additional staff will be funded from the building budget. It will become a K-3 program, allowing students currently enrolled in Montessori to remain in the program as they move up a grade.
Approved
R. Manhas
ADVANCED LEARNING

Program
New Site: Middle School APP
Proposed Placement
Hamilton
Timeline:
07-08: Planning year
08-09: 6th grade cohort
09-10: 6th and 7th grade cohorts
10-11: 6th, 7th, and 8th grade cohorts
Recommendation
Recommendation: Beginning in 2008-2009, students in APP will be served at both Hamilton and Washington Middle Schools. The new site at Hamilton will open a 6th grade cohort in 2008-2009. Currently, the enrollment in APP at Washington is affecting the number of students who can enroll in the school’s various programs. Creating a new APP site will maintain the integrity of all programs at both schools.
Approved
R. Manhas

11 comments:

Charlie Mas said...

You will notice that the School Board was not included on the routing for that memo. That's too bad. I will forward the memo to the School Board and remind them of District Policy D12.00, HIGHLY CAPABLE STUDENT PROGRAMS, which clearly reads:

"The number of self-contained program sites shall not expand beyond the 1993-94 levels. Subject to Board review, in the event of substantial District wide enrollment growth, such program sites shall be distributed geographically and among clusters to provide equitable opportunities for program access."

The creation of the addtional site is clearly in violation of the policy. The Policy does allow for expansion, but only under two conditions:

1) In the event of substantial District wide enrollment growth, which has not occurred. The District has been going on and on about how enrollment has declined, neccesitating school closures.

2) Subject to Board review, which hasn't happened either.

I will ask the Board to direct the Superintendent to follow the Policy and disapprove the recommendation.

Anonymous said...

Just curious, Charlie, do you think an additional site will dilute the program? Or are you concerned about it strictly as a violation of policy?

Anonymous said...

Charlie, you're thumbing your nose at policy regarding junk food but towing the line on programs? Where's the consistency?

Charlie Mas said...

I am neither concerned about the "dilution" of APP nor am I committed to following the rules for the sake of following the rules.

This solution, the creation of a new middle school APP site at Hamilton International Middle School, isn't a very good solution. It creates many more problems than it solves - problems that the District has not shown any interest in addressing. In addition, the District refused to collaborate with the community in developing the solution - despite a number of efforts by the community to gain the District's cooperation. The community will be opposing this solution and seeking its reversal. Raising the fact that the solution violates the District's Policy is only one front in that fight.

As for the apparent inconsistency between asking the Board to enforce this policy and advising people to disregard the nutrition policies because they are unenforced, I see none. I have consistently observed that policies go unenforced. Therefore I report this fact to the people who have an interest in selling competing foods on campus to assure them that can do so without fear of enforcement. I also report the fact to the people who are ostensibly the policy-makers to advise them that without some means to enforce their policies they are not only the object of disrespect but also rendered superfluous and a bit silly.

Anonymous said...

I don't remember seeing that policy referred to before. Any idea what the reason might have been for restricting self-contained program sites in the first place?

Anonymous said...

Where can we go to see the problems to which you refer regarding the Hamilton site? Haven't heard about this before.

Melissa Westbrook said...

My addition to this discussion is that the district is, if the capital bond measure passes in Feb., going to rebuild Hamilton and increase its capacity. This would be great as the north end needs more middle school capacity. However, it gets mostly negated if APP kids come in. I'm not saying if it's good or bad, it's just what will happen. It is also going to be a tough question as to who goes to which site because of the draw of the music program at Washington. I would predict that if the district says APP kids go to a school by virtue of where the student lives, then Eckstein will get an uptick in APP kids applying for the Spectrum program in order to access Eckstein's also superior music program. It will be interesting to see how Hamilton feels about this addition and what choices APP parents make.

Charlie Mas said...

For more information about some of the issues associated with the APP placement at Hamilton, see this posting: http://saveseattleschools.blogspot.com/2006/11/hamilton-wont-know-what-hit-em.html

There is no plan for support from the program from the District, the building administration, the building staff, or the community.

There is no plan for determining which APP students are enrolled at Washington and which at Hamilton.

There is no plan is place for developing the APP curriculum at Hamilton. There's no plan to improve the one at Washington for that matter.

There is no plan for preparing teachers at Hamilton to work with APP students.

There is no plan for how both schools will provide Integrated III for the few students that need it.

Saad Amir said...

The decision memo may very helpful for the education.The write decision make very better.
Thanks...
regards, saad from
Independent University Bangladesh

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