Endorsement for School Board Elections 2011, Position 2

 Update - doing too much, too fast and I put John Dunn in Jack Whelan's place.  My sincere apologies.

Here is my endorsement for the School Board Position 2.  

In Position 2, the candidates are Sherry Carr, Kate Martin, Jack Whelan and Mark Weber.   I am endorsing Kate Martin with a few qualifications.

I feel that Kate knows the district and knows district issues.  Kate is tenacious and would work hard (a quality that seems to resonate with many voters).   Kate's husband is Hispanic and she knows that community and its issues.  It would be a good "add" to the Board.   I feel that Kate would be willing to push other directors towards more accountability to parents and community. 

My qualifications are that I believe that Sherry Carr and Jack Whelan qualified as well. 

I supported Sherry in the last election (and even doorbelled with her).  She is a bright, capable person.  In my talk with her, she had many good ideas about the focus going forward.  She is determined that initiatives are seen through to the end (and not just started).  She believes she, as an individual Board member, would be more prescriptive than before (and example being that at least a few of the Board members are going to be looking over the hiring of the COO and CFO, no exceptions).

All of this is good and yet, I worry that she is too much in the middle and swayed by outside interests.  If I felt there was a balance between parents/community and outside interests, I could support her but I'm not sure I feel that is true.  

I don't endorse Sherry because I still worry that despite all that has gone before, she still won't hold staff's feet to the fire.   That's just my gut feeling after watching her at both Committee and Board meetings.  

Jack Whelan is a quiet, thoughtful type (which is what I thought we were getting in Harium 4 years ago).   I wish he knew our district better so that his learning curve might not be as great but I believe his work experience would be a value to the Board. 


Anonymous said…
Did Sherry ever ask any questions about TfA? Not that I know of. How does she feel about the TfA contract now? Apparently it's no longer an issue of concern for her.

Sherry had been as much of a rubber stamp for MG-J and Broad/Gates EdDeform as Peter, Steve, and Harium.

ken berry
SpEd IA Van Asselt Elem
Anonymous said…
If I have to hear Sherry Carr say "At Boeing we blah blah blah" one more time, I'm gonna pour hot wax in my ears.

Richard Greene said…
I would like hear Kate Martin's explanation of this angry letter she wrote to the Seattle Times a few years ago, describing AP courses as a "club for white, affluent families" and denigrating AP parents as "stay-at-home/'hovercraft'-parents/Laurelhurst-privilege."

I can't see someone with these simplistic and inflexible views being an effective and productive member of the school board.

dan dempsey said…
Dear Richard Greene,

There is a big difference in acting as an activist and as a director. I have known Kate for a couple of years and I can assure you she knows the difference.
mirmac1 said…
Wow, Sherry's minion tries to pull a drive-by slamming. I expect we'll see "this angry letter" in her campaign literature.
Anonymous said…
As I posted in another thread, Sherry is all in for TFA. she should be pressed on this issue relentlessly leading up to the general election.

I don't dislike Sherry personally. Frankly, there's nothing TO dislike. But I know a lot of people whom I like personally who I don't think are up to the requirements of public office, and she is one of them.

She has shown that she will not challenge the Superintendent or the central staff. Haven't we had enough of that? I do not and will not accept Harium's party line that "oh, all that goes on behind closed doors." I want it done in public. We're paying for it, after all.

Kate Martin will provide that. You bet she will. Yes, Kate can be a bit much at times. But we need at least one Board member to push the envelope. We all have seen the consequences of not doing so.

-- Ivan Weiss
I put TFA slightly into my conversation with both Steve and Sherry (I did not ask them about their views only that I had received some e-mails that bothered me). I pretty much got a shrug in terms of TFA (and not the content of the e-mails).

It's very puzzling but I honestly believe they think it's just one more thing to try and aren't really bothered by the realities.

Mr. Greene, you should talk to Kate. She openly acknowledges being wrong on that point and will explain what she has learned about advanced learning programs.

Mirmac, I think Mr. Greene was making a valid point about what he had learned about a candidate. I'm okay with whoever anyone here wants to support (except David Blomstrom).
KB said…
As a parent I have had several unpleasant encounters with S. Carr at meetings about the New Student Assignment Plan. I found that she did not have her facts together. During a 40 minute telephone conversation with her she was arrogant, condescending, dropped the “How we do it at Boeing” phrase several times and told me I had no civil right to do the work necessary to help my kids pursue their dreams in education. My interpretation of one her educational philosophies would be: Their education should be directed by the school district and not desires of the parents or students; she saw no problems with the inequalities caused by the NSAP and she did not want to mitigate the damage caused by change. Her answer was “parents” would over a few years work out the problems. She also did not have an adequate understanding of spectrum, AP and APP. In my six encounters with S. Carr she has never been pleasant and demonstrated a lack of qualifications for office.
I would also point out, because of the NSAP, this district’s director assignment to my neighborhood is odd. Middle school and high school students’ assingments are outside of Position 2’s electorate. If someone from my neighborhood had wanted to challenge her it would be next to impossible to pull together a community of support since the schools of the would be candidate are outside of the primary boundary. Our neighborhood is assigned to Eckstein and split between Hale, Roosevelt; but, we vote in the primary for Position 2?
Charlie Mas said…
When the incumbents say that they are doing all this work "behind the scenes" I have to wonder why they don't believe in transparency and doing the public's business in public.

If they say that they don't want to shame staff by calling them out in public, then I wonder why they don't know how to do their jobs with a professional demeanor and cannot perform governance without shaming people.
Anonymous said…
Who in the world thinks this election is about "ed reform"? That is an unknown notion to voters. TFA? Mostly a positive idea to voters, if an issue at all. Who could argue with some do-gooders trying to help the schools? The thing voters care about are things like the school assignment plan and how their kids are actually being served. Most voters likely think it was a great move by the board to fire the previous supt, for the 1.8 million. It will bolster them. All the math machinations, and law-suits, those are a huge detraction that will also benefit incumbents. You sue the district, you won't be getting elected. Especially if you didn't win.

mirmac1 said…
Reader, sounds like Bizarro world to me. NSAP without plans to improve your neighborhood schools except stuff them to the gills, give the old supt a big raise before you give her the golden parachute. Destruction of APP and SpecEd. TFA a positive? If you like temps teaching your kid. Bad audit after bad audit. Guess we forgot to mention those.
Anonymous said…
I feel a change is needed in this spot, but I feel unsure about Martin. The skatepark in her yard story, for instance, where she didn't get a permit from the city:

what is up with that?
that feels either loose cannon-ish or cavalier about regulations, neither of which i like.
into alts
bf said…
OK, so I have two kids in APP, so I can't vote for Martin. Who do I vote for?
Dorothy Neville said…
I like Jack Whelan. I have met with him several times and found him thoughtful and curious. He'd have some learning to do, but no more than the average new school board director does.
Name said…
I think the board will be better with Sherry on so there is some stabiility as hopefull there will be three other new board members. Betty Patu still hasn't figured out how things work and votes no to almost anything complicated. Sherry at least knows how to understand the complex audit stuff and is focused on seeing thhat process through. She may feel emboldened to question staff more directly with new peers. Having four new challengers did not work out so hot the last time.
Anonymous said…
District 2 parent,

My take is this:

Kate Martin is too impulsive and I am not sure she can work and play well with others who don't hold the same view as her's.

Jack is smart enough but I don't think he can hold his own against the others on the board.

Sherry Carr is just a rubber stamp.

Mark has the most to learn about the inner workings of the district but I thinbk he is smart enough and gutsy enough to hold his own. He also seems to have a pretty good BS meter.

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