Bellevue Makes Some Decisions

Interesting article in the PI about decision/recommendations the Bellevue District made yesterday.

One was to choose the Holt math series over Discovering math. Interestingly, there are 6 members of their Board and only 3 were there and all three voted for Holt. (Which begs the question, shouldn't there have been at least 4 to vote?)

Two, like Seattle, Bellevue won't be voting on their budget until July. But their survey of parents seemed to influence their superintendent's recommendations. The parents survey top five were:

"reducing temperatures, increasing parking fees, cuts to central administration, raising athletics fees, and increasing meal prices."

Notice that one in the middle - cuts to central administration?

From the article:

The recommendations from District Superintendent Amalia Cudeiro included those same items, plus:

• Bussing changes

• Charging for sports transportation

• Putting off equipment replacements for transportation and cafeterias

• Charging families for gifted-entry tests

• Reducing support for AP practice tests

• Decreasing the curriculum department budget by 10 percent

• Reducing elementary summer school

• Charging for clock hours

• Decreasing support for National Board candidates

Controversial proposals to reduce the number of elementary-school librarians, eliminate elementary band and orchestra, and drop certain athletic programs did not make the superintendent's list.

Those measures also ranked low in the survey results.

So let me get this right. The Superintendent in Bellevue asked parents what they thought about cutting in their school budgets, listened and then included their top 5 choices in her recommendations as well as rejecting their lower choices.

That's public engagement, SPS.


StepJ said…
The angle I find interesting is that Bellevue and other Districts in our area ranked in the top 10 in the nation by Great Schools all share a parent/family/student first attitude.

They not only listen to parents they seek out parent input, value it and use it as their primary criteria in making decisions.

The polar opposite of the attitude of SPS in regards to parents and families.
Charlie Mas said…
Stories like this make me feel like those districts are in some sort of alternative universe.

Or maybe we are.
dan dempsey said…
I wonder in those communities if School Board behavior is similar to Seattle's?

Note: attorney Stafne asked if the NTN STEM contract appeal filed in regard to the 2-3-10 decision could be extended to the redo board decision of 4-7-10?

Of course the district said NO.

So it is round up time for me to pony up about $300 to file essentially the same paperwork all over again only this time for 4-7-10 NTN STEM.

This Appeal of the Redo needs to be filed by May 7, 2010. Note the $300 does not include any attorney fees.

I bring this up here as this pertains to how SPS decisions are made. Note internal memos and extensive relevant data shows that selection of Project Based Learning and NTN schools is not a reasonable way to advance student learning. Four of 7 board members vote for anything recommended by MGJ no matter how ill advised.

This will likely be a last attempt at actions that involve Superior Court in which I will be involved. (Hey I outlasted Gary Ikeda). Then it is finish up items at Washington Supreme Court. Pay Stafne for some NTN work and pay him to look over recall petition paper work.

Note: Scott Stafne has done an enormous amount of unpaid work. He would love to be paid ... but he is finishing what was started. I am paying him for what I asked him to do, which is NTN and likely will be some recall work in June.

Federal Court "Pro Bono" legal fees in winning actions normally get paid by losing school districts. What Stafne has done will not be paid by SPS even if the SPS loses as this is not Federal Court action but K.C. superior court and WA Supreme court.

Also of interest is (I believe) that Federal Court action can be aimed at individuals as well as the board as an entity..... think about individual directors and their votes that deprived "students and families" of their civil rights. Cooper School, Student Assignment Plan, Math, etc.

Time will tell.

I am now on my way to pick up 5 boxes of Cleveland NTN STEM Option material that constitute the RCW 28A.645.020 record that should have been provided on 3-25-2010 ... it is now 4-22-2010 but it does manage to come in under Judge Middaugh's time extension that she granted through May 7, 2010.
{for no apparent reason other than the SPS was not prepared to follow the law.}

I think Charlie's comment about alternate universe applies.

Note: Scott Stafne is a folk hero in my book..... win or lose.

I have Chris Jackins in my folk heros hall of fame as well.

Think about all these folks and many others from time to time...Charlie, Melissa, Meg, etc.

Franklin gave us a republic and these folks are interested in retaining a republic. "God bless then in their endeavors and their lives"
dan dempsey said…
15,644 Pages

That is what I got today from the Olympia Offices of Freimund, Jackson, and Tardif in Olympia as the SPS transcropt of the administrative record in regard to the Cleveland NTN appeal of the 2-3-10 decision filed by Anderson, Guzek, Sias, Essad, et. al..

Porter, McLaren, Mass got only 1,100 pages from the district on 6-25-2009 in regard to their Discovering Math adoption appeal of the 5- 6- 2009 decision, which the appellants eventually supplemented with 300+ additional pages that the SPS chose to exclude from use in making the original decision.

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