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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Mayoral Candidates Education Forum

CPPS, Community and Parents for Public Schools, is hosting a Mayoral candidate forum on Education.

Tuesday, April 30
6:30 - 8:30pm
Garfield High School Commons
400 - 23rd Avenue, Seattle, WA 98122

Candidates who have confirmed their attendance:
Tim Burgess, Bruce Harrell, Kate Martin, Michael McGinn, Ed Murray, Charlie Staadecker, and Peter Steinbrueck

Join these seven candidates running for Mayor of Seattle at the CPPS Mayoral Candidates Forum on Education. Ask questions and learn how the next mayor proposes to help ALL Children receive the support that they need to gain a quality education.

Let's make our presence known and send a message to the next mayor of Seattle!

Be there and please spread the word!

17 comments:

Just saying said...

Charlie Staadecker is heavily involved with the Road Map Project and CCER. CCER is a research group that has access to our children's personal and identifiable information.

I will not support a candidate that thinks it is ok to circumvent a parent's ability to control their children's personal information.

Now is the time to make our privacy issues an issue.

Charlie Mas said...

Just Saying, I think you should attend the forum and raise the question.

Greg Linden said...

I was a supporter of McGinn back in 2009 when he said:

McGinn said, he would have three priorities: improving the Seattle's public schools, making the Internet more widely available, and upgrading bus service.

As for the schools, if the school district doesn't improve within two years, McGinn said the city should take it over.


http://blog.seattletimes.nwsource.com/politicsnorthwest/2009/03/24/sierra_clubs_michael_mcginn_to.html

But the schools have not improved within two years and McGinn did not take them over. I see this a promise broken.

So, I'm looking at the other candidates. Ed Murray seems to be the leading opposition to McGinn, but, from what I can tell, his position is pretty milquetoast, for example:

I don't think a city can succeed unless it has a successful K-12 school system. But I also realize I'm not the school board and that the city doesn't control the schools. I'm not going to propose the Mayor Murray plan for taking over the school district. But I do think that if I'm the next mayor I would engage a conversation in the city with the school district, with our community colleges, with our universities, particularly their schools of education, and look at what kind of school district we want for this city that attracts kids who are now in private schools back into the public school system. How do we increase graduation rates, how do we reward the best and brightest teachers, how do we develop models of how an urban school system can succeed?

http://www.seattlemet.com/news-and-profiles/publicola/seattle-mayors-race-february-2013/articles/a-publicola-q-and-a-with-mayoral-candidate-ed-murray-april-2013

Anyone have further thoughts on these two or the other candidates in terms of their involvement in Seattle's public schools?

Anonymous said...

McGinn in charge of schools? EGADs! He'd probably assign Holly Miller as superintendent.

As for Murray, he has a strong record in the State Senate supporting K-12. So far he's looking good to me.

Senators question GOP push to bring corporate strategy to WA education

In a meeting with the press today, Senate Democratic Leader Ed Murray and Sens. Andy Billig and David Frockt discussed their concerns about a package of bills being touted in Olympia as education reforms, but were borrowed from think tanks recently found to be backing legislation that benefits their corporate donors.

“The three bills we heard in the Early Learning and K12 Committee this week, none of them make sense for Washington. And no wonder. They’re cookie-cutter proposals copied from Florida and Louisiana. Not one of these bills moves us one step closer to fulfilling our constitutional obligation to fund basic education,” said Billig.


Anyone but Burgess

Melissa Westbrook said...

So Greg, the quote was "the school district" not schools. You could read it two ways.

I'm with Anyone but Burgess who is clearly aligned with ed reform, likes the idea of mayoral control AND the ability for the mayor to appoint all or part of the School Board.

No thanks.

Greg Linden said...

I didn't mean to focus on McGinn's specific statement that the city should take over. I read that more broadly at the time, that it was a promise to pursue more radical change.

I don't believe McGinn followed through on that promise, but perhaps I am being too harsh. It is fair to point out, for example, that the district was changing two years later (Goodloe-Johnson was fired in March 2011, two years after McGinn made this statement).

Could we broaden this a bit? Are there candidates that support interventions that anyone would feel might be useful? For example, mayoral candidates that are calling for more taxes for education funding at the state, county, or city level? Perhaps candidates that are calling for the school board positions to be changed to paid full-time positions with staff? Anything meaningful and specific candidates have promised regarding public education in Seattle that anyone would like to highlight?

Game On! said...

I would like to add that Burgess has received full donations from Nick Hanauer. Burgess is also supported by DFER; an organization that just received $10K from the Walton Foundation.

Given Burgess's support from Hanauer and DFER, I believe he has the support to initiate mayoral control.

Game on said...

Hanauer's wife also gave Burgess a full campaign donation.

Thankful for campaign limits.

dw said...

Charlie Staadecker is heavily involved with the Road Map Project and CCER. CCER is a research group that has access to our children's personal and identifiable information.

I will not support a candidate that thinks it is ok to circumvent a parent's ability to control their children's personal information.


Totally with you, Just Saying, 100%. This notion of sucking up personal data from every single one of our kids for (unspecified and broadly available) long-term use is unacceptable. At least not without some kind of opt-out provision. Right now the district is explicitly saying that parents are not allowed to opt out their kids for any reason whatsoever. I didn't give the district permission to do that when I enrolled my kids, and now the laws have changed after the fact. Bullshit.

As Charlie says, please attend the forum and bring up this question. Not just to Mr. Staadecker, but to all the candidates.

Anonymous said...

Oh look - research on mayoral control of schools!

Claims on Mayoral Governance Don’t Stand Up to Scrutiny
http://nepc.colorado.edu/newsletter/2013/04/review-mayoral-governance

CT

Melissa Westbrook said...

Greg, I am attempting to interview all the candidates. Thanks for those questions.

Burgess has now declined based on me commenting at Publicola about his fundraiser put on by ed reformers.

CT, I believe (but I have to check) that report is debunking the one Burgess cites.

Charlie Mas said...

If Ed Murray actually said that he wants to attract "kids who are now in private schools back into the public school system" then he clearly isn't aware of the capacity crisis in Seattle Public Schools.

Why presume that more is better?

Anonymous said...

There's this oldie but goodie:
http://education.nationaljournal.com/2009/07/is-mayoral-control-the-answer.php

See if you can pick out the Ed deformers! Bonus points if you can recognize the person who did a fabulous job destroying Arizona's public school system and pick out the NCLB architect and rah-rah man turned Pearson lobbyist....
Don't miss Federal Way's own flim-flam man!

CT

Anonymous said...

Until such time as Mayor of Seattle has control of school board (I'm hoping this never comes to pass)...

is it not true that the major avenue for City of Seattle to influence the public schools is through the Families and Education Levy (FEL)?

I heard Kate Martin talk about FEL recently. She wants the FEL to fund programs that are actually efficacious! She wants cost-benefit analysis and clear rationales for all programs being considered for funding; she wants funded programs to be reviewed for efficacy and course-correction made when preliminary results indicate that funded programs are not producing the expected benefits.

Wow - wouldn't THAT be a major, positive shift in priority for these funds!

At present, the Ed Deformers determine the budget for each levy. These funds go primarily to fund Ed Deform projects of questionable efficacy.

I hope folks will give Kate a serious listen...

Joan NE

Melissa Westbrook said...

Well, I'm not sure if Kate knows but the City IS now doing much more strict funding AND is defunding programs that don't show results (and this started a couple of years back).

Many organizations were very unhappy to see their money pulled but the City feels it needs to see bang for the buck.

That said, I think some groups have more influence than others.

Unknown said...

If McGinn "broke a promise" to takeover the schools as Seattle's mayor, I'm very happy he did so. For whatever reasons.

The only thing that concerns me is that he ever said such a thing, at any time. Mayors taking over school systems have had absolutely horrific results---right across the board, wherever they've been tried.

NYC, Chicago and LA schools are largely a nightmare, due to the power grab of the mayor's office.

When I spoke informally with Mayor McGinn, in mid-April, I thanked him for NOT climbing on either the "Mayor Takeover" or "Parent Trigger" bandwagons that appear to have peaked in "Pop Policy" discussions about a year ago. ("Won't Back Down", now considered by many as The Worst Movie In History, ironically backfired; it appears to have had the opposite effect from what the privatizers were expecting.

So, Mayor McGinn made it clear to me that he is not in favor of the skanky "trigger" nor the Mayor Takeover---joking about the latter, "Don't I have enough major responsibilities already?"

Let's hope he meant it. I'm confident that he did.

Unknown said...

You know, I think I really am a big of private education in Seattle. They have a lot lower rate of violence and bullying, and the education quality tends to be a little better. If you can afford it, I don't see the harm in it. Heaven knows that the U.S. could use more individuals with better educations to compete in the global economy.