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Friday, May 17, 2013

Director Smith-Blum Will Not Be Running to Retain Her Post

 Update 5:  I wrote in the comments but wanted to update here.  The third candidate for Kay's seat is Stephan Blanford.  He has been a lecturer at the Evans School of Public Affairs, Executive Director at White Center Early Learning Initiative, currently owns Lighthouse Consulting which provides services to school districts and community-based non-profits. He did work for the Alliance for 4 years.

Update 4:  Another candidate has filed for Michael DeBell's seat.  Dean McColgan who is the Director of Development for the Museum of Flight and is a current board member at the Belltown Community Council.  He also has worked for the Downtown Seattle Association and was a former mayor and city council member in Federal Way.  This is getting interesting.  He did apply to be a Port Commissioner recently.

Update 3:  Two more people have filed to run in Kay Smith-Blum's district.  One is LaCrese Green who has run previously.  The other is Olu Thomas who I don't know.  The only info I find is that he served on the board for the Denise Louie Educational Center.

Still waiting to see if anyone files to run against Betty Patu.


Update 2:  Parent and public education activist Sue Peters has now entered the race for Michael DeBell's seat against Suzanne Estey.

Update 1:  What is that saying about a door closing and another opening?  I was disappointed to hear that President Smith-Blum has chosen not to run but I do feel better - for our school district - that Councilman Burgess has dropped out.

End of update.

Citing personal and work considerations, President Smith-Blum has made the decision not to run again.

I am deeply saddened by this news because I think she has been a great director.  But, given the stresses of the work and the volume of the work, I certainly understand her position.

22 comments:

mirmac1 said...

AARRGH!

Anonymous said...

Sad for the district.

-HS parent

JS said...

Hopefully she established some momentum that will continue. Things have improved a lot since she stepped up.

Anonymous said...

Any word on potential candidates for Kay's seat other than the one who filed?

--wondering

mirmac1 said...

And they'll come to a grinding halt under Sherry "I was against it before I voted for it" Carr.

que sera-sera

David said...

That's too bad. I hope Kay Smith-Blum finds and mentors someone to run for her seat who might have her (unfortunately rare) combination of competence and desire for oversight. Otherwise, her departure is going to leave quite a hole. Really is a shame Smith-Blum is leaving.

Jamie said...

It is indeed a shame she is leaving and I have to retract the catty things I said about her when she was first running. I assumed she would represent the moneyed business interests ahead of the students and she proved me wrong over and over again. Well done, Kay and i wish her the best in the future. She will leave a big hole on the board.

RosieReader said...

Darn. She was a bright spot.

Anonymous said...

@David: Agree on mentoring.

Disappointing. For the most part, I think she did good work and earned trust. Only hacks like Sundquist and Maier (who am I missing?) are staying in the game.

Mr. White

Anonymous said...

Who else has filed for that position?

DistrictWatcher

Melissa Westbrook said...

Stephan Blanford is running in Kay's district. He has been a lecturer at the Evans School of Public Affairs, Executive Director at White Center Early Learning Initiative, currently owns Lighthouse Consulting which provides services to school districts and community-based non-profits. He did work for the Alliance for 4 years.

He has a doctorate in education leadership and policy studies.

He has children in SPS. His wife works for SPS.

Interesting. I believe he and I have crossed paths at education events. I look forward to talking with him.

mirmac1 said...

Has Blanford done anything else other than "educational leadership", work for the Alliance, and consulting? Sounds like a professional ed reformer to me.

suep. said...

Hi everyone,

I'm in too.

Melissa, if you think this merits a new thread, here's my note to your readers. Thanks! Sue


Dear Readers of the Seattle Schools Community Forum,

I have decided to run for School Board Director in District IV and would value your support.

I am the parent of two in SPS and have nine years of direct experience with the school district. I have been both a local and national advocate and activist for public education and I believe that I can serve the Seattle schools community even better as your elected representative on the school board.

I hope you will give me that opportunity and your vote.

Please let me know what you think the district’s priorities should be and I will share these with the board and superintendent.

As a longtime contributor myself and co-founding editor of the Seattle Education Blog, I value blogs. At their best, they inform in ways that newspapers used to do, and they serve as a community bulletin board.

Thank you for your support.

If you would like to help with my campaign or contribute, please contact us at: suepeters4SPS@yahoo.com

Sincerely,

Sue Peters


mirmac1 said...

Hurray Sue!

JS said...

Smith-Blum said she will support Blanford's candidacy. Strongly, it sounds like. That's worth something to me.

Melissa Westbrook said...

Thanks Sue for stepping up!

Eric B said...

Thanks to Sue Peters for running and for dropping in here. I appreciate your asking what we think your priorities should be, and I'd also like to hear what your top priorities are.

On Stephan Blanford, my impression of A4E was that it changed substantially in the last few years, from being a support organization to being an advocacy organization. Do we know when Blanford was associated with A4E? I would look a lot more favorably on that experience if it was before the shift.

Carol Simmons said...

Thank you Sue Peters.

Wondering said...

Not finding much on Blanford's consulting company. Has anyone?

Uncertain said...

http://www.linkedin.com/pub/stephan-blanford/5/800/93b

Blanford was a Community and Governmental Relations person for the Alliance between 2003-2007. What was going on with the Alliance during this time period.

Blanford has a lot of theory, but seems to lack hands on classroom experience.

suep. said...

Thank you, everyone, for your encouraging words.

I will outline my priorities on my web site:
suepeters4schoolboard.org

Sue Peters

suep. said...

Thank you, everyone, for your encouraging words.

I will outline my priorities on my web site:
suepeters4schoolboard.org

Sue Peters