Seattle Schools This Week

Not an especially busy week with the Veteran's Day holiday on Friday.

Executive Committee meeting from 8-10 a.m.  Agenda not yet available.

Work Session on Student Rights & Responsibilities from 4-5:30 p.m.  This is likely to be a discussion of the revisions to this section of Board policy. 

Audit & Finance Committee meeting (Audit) from 4-6 p.m.  Agenda not yet available.

I'm sure you have noted the petition on the homepage of this blog in support student journalists at our high schools.  When you compare the old policy with the proposed policy, you can see how severely curtailed students' writing will be.  And, if there are minimal guidelines to principals, I'm sure the oversight may vary. 

I asked this before and I ask the district again; what is the problem you are trying to solve?  I ask this of Dr. Enfield as well as it becomes part of her Superintendent policies.  What is the problem?

It may be this policy needs some tightening up but this is way beyond a Botox tightening - it's like a facelift on Joan Rivers.  Too tight and not realistic.


Dorothy Neville said…
The Audit and Finance committee meetings are a little different than the norm, in that this week there is only the Thursday meeting and it is labeled Audit. The Tuesday meeting is listed as coming NEXT week and is labeled Finance. Now ordinarily, both meetings occur in the same week and the Tuesday is Audit, Thursday Finance. Worth double checking.

As for the Executive Committee meeting, Wayne Barnett told me that he was going to present his suggested changes to the ethics policy. I have seen the draft and for the most part, like it.
dan dempsey said…
Here is something that should be on the Executive Committee agenda:

TFA corps member Desiree Robinette has been teaching since day 1 of this school year at Aki Kurose.

The problems with this are multiple:

(1) She did not have any kind of teaching certificate until September 23rd when she received an Emergency Substitute Certificate.

(2) An emergency substitute credential specifies no more than 30 consecutive days at one position. I do not believe that Ms. Robinette has missed a day of school at Aki. She is listed as regular staff on the Aki Staff webpage.

(3) As of November 1, 2011 the district had not requested a "conditional certificate" for Ms. Robinette and she was still teaching every school day at Aki.

(4) What was Ms. Robinette paid for her completely un-credentialed teaching up to September 23?

(5) At what pay rate is "emergency substitute" Robinette being paid since her credentialed debut on September 23.

(6) We are now over 40 school days into the school year ... Joy Anderson filed a legal appeal of the Board's decision to authorize Superintendent Enfield to request three conditional certificates for Teach for America core members without conducting the required careful review of all options for closing the achievement gaps. .... Is Dr. Enfield ever going to make that request? Why is Ms. Robinette still teaching at Aki and likely in violation of the 30 DAY provision on her "Emergency Substitute Credential".

(a) her completely un-credentialed teaching up to Sept 23?
(b) her 'emergency substitute teaching" since gaining her certificate on September 23?

(8) Have parents of the students Ms. Robinette teaches been made aware of the certification situation?

These might be good questions for the Executive Committee to answer NOW.

Gee I wonder what Olga and the SEA think about all this?
dan dempsey said…
Action Report of August 11, 2011 ....

From Susan Enfield states in
Section VIII Statement of Issue:

Teach for America candidates who do not already have a teaching certificate must have a conditional certificate before they can begin teaching. Approval of this motion by the School Board is required before the conditional certification application can be submitted to the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) for approval.

Does either Dr. Enfield or the Board ever read the action reports submitted by Dr. Enfield?

So why has Dr. Enfield failed to observe her own statement?

Why had she not even submitted an application for any of the three TFA corps members that the Board authorized her to apply for conditional certificates on 9-21 and 10-5 by Nov. 1, 2011.

Yet she has allowed all three of these TFA corps members to teach without "conditional certificates".

Hard not to remember the SAO report saying that the District was at risk for violating State and Federal laws.... Does WAC 181-79A-231 count? How about having teachers with certificates? How about "emergency subs" in the same job for more than 30 consecutive days?

NEXT UP the flawed Cleveland waiver request for exemption from the 150 hour/credit requirement. Coming at the next Board meeting.
dan dempsey said…
Susan Enfield wrote another Action report for the September 21, 2011 meeting ......

and there it was again in section VIII:

Teach for America candidates who do not already have a teaching certificate must have a conditional certificate before they can begin teaching. Approval of this motion by the School Board is required before the conditional certification application can be submitted to the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) for approval.
dan dempsey said…
Yes Hockey Fans Dr. Susan Enfield and the Board made it a hat trick on October 5 ... or a three-peat.

YUP section VIII again.... stated:

"Teach for America candidates who do not already have a teaching certificate must have a conditional certificate before they can begin teaching."
Anonymous said…
Susan Enfield and Co. are attempting to micromanage students'
speech but do not follow their own policies.

Not a good lesson for the youngsters, people.

This situation with Desiree Robinette needs to be taken up by Brian Rosenthal.

--Dan Dempsey rocks
po3 said…
Here's something that won't be happening this week:
po3 said…
Here's something that won't be happening this week:
StopTFA said…
The OSPI Office of Professional Practices's Code of Professional Conduct for Education Practitioners


Any act performed without good cause that materially contributes to one of the following unauthorized professional practices is an act of unprofessional practice.

(1) The intentional employment of a person to serve as an employee in a position for which certification is required by rules of the Professional Educator Standards Board when such person does not possess, at the time of commencement of such responsibility, a valid certificate to hold the position for which such person is employed

When an educational service district superintendent, a district superintendent, or the chief administrative officer of an approved private school possesses sufficient reliable information to believe that a certificated employee within such district or approved private school is not of good moral character or personally fit or has committed an act of unprofessional conduct, such superintendent or chief administrative officer, within a reasonable period of time of making such determination, shall file a written complaint with the superintendent of public instruction: Provided, That if an educational service district or school district is considering action to discharge an employee of such district, the educational service district or school district superintendent need not file such complaint until ten calendar days after making the final decision to serve or not serve formal notice of discharge.
dan dempsey said…
or has committed an act of unprofessional conduct,

So who committed the unprofessional conduct?

Lots of choices ...
(1) Ms. Robinette
(2) Aki Kurose Principal
(3) Superintendent Enfield
(4) HR department

(5) All of the above.
dan dempsey said…
Maybe the Executive Committee can chime in on which of the 5 choices above it prefers.

I was thinking the Board was pretty unprofessional for approving the Authorization for "Conditional Certs" to begin with.
StopTFA said…
My vote would be on 2 and 3. They are certificated administrators.
Anonymous said…
side note for Audit/Finance - more McClure (and I bet other schools, too):

McClure charges for ASB activites held during school hours. Is this legal - to ask students to pay to play instead of being in class?

And how does this affect students who can't pay? They are sent to the study room. How humiliating. Their friends are having fun at the dance and they are sitting at a desk. Not quite punishment for being poor but close enough.

I understand "scholarships' are available. So then the student has to choose between the study room and begging? Even more embarassment for the student.

I also wonder why the price is the same for all activites regardless of cost. A dance may cost more because of a DJ fee, etc. But why charge for capture the flag?

If the no-cost events were free at least the "study room' kids could have a choice at some fun along with their friends.

Jan said…
JC -- this is not something I had ever heard of. I worry that if we give it to District staff to try to solve, they will just take the easy way and abolish all of the activities (solves their problem, and they don't really care about whether it deprives the students). I am wondering if this is something that can't be resolved at the school level -- either through the principal/exec director, or through the PTSA -- so that either the process of "covering" kids who can't pay is handled more graciously, or -- as you say -- there is some ability to at least participate in some "free" activities. One thought -- depending on school demographics, what some entities do is ask parents who ARE paying to pay a few dollars more, to cover those who can't. And then -- everyone goes, whether they have paid or not.

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