Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Times Reacts to Final List

Here is an editorial that appeared in today's Seattle Times. It was titled "No Closure on Seattle Public School Closures". There is some complaining about the see-saw nature of the process. From the editorial:

The part of the closures plan causing the most vocal outcry has been the fate of the district's Accelerated Progress Program. Goodloe-Johnson originally proposed closing the building that houses the program, Lowell Elementary, and splitting students into two South End schools. Now it is proposed that Lowell remain open. Half of the gifted-education students will move south, creating access and opportunity there.

The closures plan is getting better. But we doubt this is the final list.

My reply in the Comments section:

Hey Seattle Times, it is not Lowell's fault or job to provide "opportunity or access" to the APP program. It's the DISTRICT's. If those things are not available to south-end kids, it's the district's fault and their responsibility. Moving kids around and saying that solves the problem is not doing much. Better that the district ask why more parents in the south end aren't applying and that's likely because south-end schools have been suspicious of APP/Spectrum, discourage parents from applying, don't even have the forms out during registration time and don't want their brightest kids to leave because of the WASL.

I agree; I don't think this is the final list. I'd like to see Summit move to Meany, Nova stay where it is (the building still works and they could get a modest remodeling upgrade a la South Shore High School) and SBOC finally get the BEX capital funds promised it YEARS ago and their own home (which a previous Board signed off on and that this current Board would have to change in order for SBOC to be with Nova).

And by the way, if the district is so poor, how come they are having one capital project, New School, on an accelerated schedule (10-hour days, 6 days a week which means time and a half for Saturdays for the workers)? How do they have the money for that? Additionally, they will need capital funds for some of the schools that will be receiving new populations of kids from closed schools. How come capital funds are being used to hire not one but two people at a cost of $500,000 over 3 years when there is an alleged hiring freeze?

Hard to cry poor when you spend money like that.


Ben said...

"Half of the gifted-education students will move south, creating access and opportunity there."

Thank you for saying that this is not Lowell's responsibility, but the district's.

More to the point, the Times has basically just parroted SPS's talking points about the APP split. The split will create access and opportunity. Except... no. It won't.

another mom said...

Melissa, brillant response. I wish I could be as succinct.