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Friday, June 14, 2013

Farewell to Pinehurst K-8?

Superintendent Banda has sent a letter to Pinehurst families about their school that leaves things pretty up in the air but on a downward trend. 

He tells the families that they had been considering moving Pinehurst to Broadview-Thomson K-8 but that it will NOT happen.  Pinehurst will stay where it is for one more year and they will have "discussions over the summer about the school's future beyond the 2013-2014 school year."

District, just pull the band aid off.  It might be kinder.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Very sad. There were several kids there who started in Waldorf but couldn't afford the tuition even with support. I wonder what they will do. I wonder if they will start looking at forming a charter school.

HP

Po3 said...

I did not vote for charter schools because I don't like the companies like KIPP that run them. But I would support Pinehurst going charter as it is the kind of school I think charters were intended to be.

Melissa Westbrook said...

HP/Po3, not going to happen.

Not because the people at Pinehurst don't have a worthy program or care enough. But the way this chartering is being set up, you have to be extremely in the know or else have experience in applying AND being ready to explain your application AND having the resources to get this done.

I really think very few grassroots group will have that ability.

Doh Driver said...

But Melissa, if they pull the band-aid off *before* they close the school, then we could claim they aren't following the process and take them to court. Better to string us along on false hopes. Or rather, poison us in small measures and cross their fingers that we don't notice what they're doing.

kgroth said...

I don't think the District gets or supports alternative education since they frequently threaten to close Pinehurst K-8, our enrollment drops, and then we're faulted for low enrollment and threatened again. Our school would probably be better as a Charter school or an independent school (not in SPS). The challenge is we would need a corporation with the business expertise to submit the Charter school application, it's too complicated for a group of volunteer parents. I have an accounting degree and business background and it would be a stretch for me and a full-time job to fill out the lengthy, cumbersome application.

I question how genuine was the District proposal to co-locate with Broadview-Thomson since they never shared details of the feasibility with us like they did with schools in a similar situation such as Jane Addams K-8. We were told the proposal was a 99% "done deal". Then the Broadview-Thomson PTA protested it a week ago (since the District never informed the PTA of it and asked us not to contact them), and a week later we got a memo from Banda that Broadview-Thomson was off the table, without any details or explanation. That shows that large schools with a loud voice can protest something and the District will bow down to them. Goliath won this one, and small schools in Seattle are a dying breed.

Pinehurst's future looks doubtful so I transferred my 1st grader to Sacajawea, our attendance school, and one of the last small schools in Seattle with 250 students K-5. If I wait another year after boundaries change, my child could be assigned to Olympic Hills which is walking distance from us, and they are scheduled to become a large school in their new building. No thanks, I prefer small schools.

Anonymous said...

I really couldn't see how they would fit the Pinehurst program at Broadview-Thompson's site. It is a former junior high building that doesn't have a large footprint. The playground has been created out of old parking lot space. So, the existing playground would be the only place to put portables. I suppose the kids could use the park next door instead of the school's playground? That's the only way I think the district could have made it work. And, what happens as B-T gets more full like all the north end schools? How do they split the gym and library time then? What are the odds those portables would end up taken over by the neighborhood program eventually?

Pinehurst deserves a real building, not a collection of portables in a parking lot and part-time access to the "real school." They also don't deserve to be kicked out of their current building and to be threatened with closure over and over. I feel awful for them.

Incoming Parent

Unknown said...

Hi
I don't know if this is the right blog. But these codes from tonight's meeting might help us. They haven't been revised since 08' but we might be able to use them? But they also lead back to some really random codes.