Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Good, the Bad/Ugly and Other News

From today's Times:

"Three teams from Ingraham High School in Seattle have qualified for the finals of the world's largest rocketry challenge, to be held in May in Virginia. Ingraham's program, in its third year, qualified one team for the finals last year. This year, Ingraham's three teams are the only ones from the Pacific Northwest to qualify, said Peter Schurke, an Ingraham teacher and the teams' advisor."

From the Times, an article about TT Minor students playing in the park adjacent to the school picked up and played with a hypodermic needle. It is unclear if the needle pricked the skin of any of the children. Several SPS schools have adjacent park areas that students use.

Other News of Interest
From the Seattle Council PTSA:

ParentMap, which provides parents with tools and resources, has two upcoming events geared towards parents of Teens & Tweens. Dr. Laura Kastner "Psychologist of the Year", has just written the first book to ever address the crucial issue of emotional regulation for parents dealing with tween and teens. According to ParentMap, Dr. Kastner provides a realistic, powerful and ultimately entertaining talk focusing on the most common sources of family strife during the teen years, and then gives parents clear and approachable strategies for tackling them. Her talks are being held in Tacoma on Thursday, April 16th from 7-9 at Stadium High School, and in Bellevue on Tuesday, May 19th from 7-9 at Meydenbauer Center Theater. Tickets are $18, but there is a $3 discount if you use the code PTA.


Dorothy Neville said...

Another Seattle Times article that may be of interest.

"Three days of camping at Mount Rainier, with a park ranger leading the tour. Meals, transportation and camping equipment provided, too. All free.

For four weeks, park rangers have made this pitch to Seattle-area families who have little or no experience camping and to low-income families."

Jet City mom said...

HONKFEST West is upon us ( yeah, I had never heard of it either)
but last night in Ballard- I came upon Drumline from Garfield high school playing outside Thaiku.
( They had already played Mr.Spots and their next stop was the Sunset)

Tonight they are playing Georgetown.
Be there or be square.

Melissa Westbrook said...

Thank you to Dorothy and Emeraldkity. If you hear of activities/events/speakers that you think would interest parents here, please post them. No one can keep track of everything and this city certainly has a lot to offer (lots of it free or low-cost).

TechyMom said...

Apparently LWSD in Kirkland is considering cutting 3 Quest Pull-out teachers. Quest is their advanced program, and the pullout is somewhere between Spectrum and ALO, if I understand correctly. I haven't heard anything about Spectrum cuts at SPS and SPS is talking about growing ALOs. So, maybe the grass isn't so much greener in the 'burbs?

This was forwarded to another list I'm on where there are a fair number of Eastsiders

We want to inform the Quest community that the Quest program has not completely escaped budget cuts. the Lake Washington School District is having Budget Input sessions THIS WEEK to get input from its community as to how to handle its 7.7 Million dollar shortfall. During the input sessions (dates and locations listed below), there will be a presentation, a Q&A and a chance for YOU to provide input as to what should be kept and what should be cut. There will be a FORM that you can fill out where you will indicate what you think should be cut, saved, etc. On the form will include a list of possible items to be cut; including Enrichment Pull-Out Quest, Safety Net, Secondary School Sports and a variety of other programs.
The district has included our 3 Enrichment Pull-Out teachers on the list of possible budget reductions, which includes 40 possible items. These three programs currently run at Ben Rush, Margaret Mead and Sandburg Elementary Schools and currently serve 307 students. This cut will affect almost 40% of the elementary Quest student population. (307 pull-out students, 472 full-time students District-wide) The combined experience level between these 3 instructors is well over 40 years of teaching experience. These are incredibly experienced instructors with backgrounds in teaching gifted education, and would be a huge loss to our community. If the program is cut, it will most likely not be reinstated, or if it is, it will take a long time to rebuild it to its current standard.
Please consider taking some time out to go and put in a positive comment about EPO Quest, how it positively affects your child, students who participate in the program and encourage the district to let the program remain.
If you have suggestions on how to help keep the program intact (some parents are suggesting having parents contribute for part of the transportation costs, which some Choice Schools are already doing, and some of the secondary school sports program are also suggesting) or if you have any other creative solutions for helping keeping EPO intact, now is the time to toss those ideas out to the School District as well.