Odds and Ends

A good opportunity to hear School Board candidates up close and personal from the Seattle Neighborhood Coalition this Saturday:

As summer turns to fall, we notice the proliferation of yard signs heralding the upcoming election.  By now, we have all been inundated with information about our City Council District Elections.  There are actually other races appearing on this November's ballot.  In the spirit of examining some lesser publicized campaigns, we are reviving our format of "speed dating" the candidates. We'll hear from folks running for some less covered races such as Elections Director, Assessor, and Seattle School Board.

Our meetings start at 9:00 AM at the Central Senior Center, 500 30th Avenue South.  We now offer a continental breakfast of juice, coffee, yogurt, fruit, and muffins for $6.00. A traditional hot and tasty breakfast is still available for $14.00.

I know that some Board candidates may not be in attendance due to prior commitments.

Also, in looking over the salary list for Seattle Schools employees (fascinating), I note that Ron English, despite being retired, will be paid until January of 2016.  There are also some big bonuses that I don't understand but maybe someone can explain.

Strike News

CM Kashama Sawant is donating $500 to the teachers strike fund and having a community meeting in Council chambers in City Hall on Thursday, September 10 from 6-7:30 pm.

From one of our readers:  Teachers and staff will picket at their individual schools Wednesday and Thursday from 8:30 am to 3 pm. On Friday is 9/11 there will be no picketing and teachers will participate in community service of their choice.

Shoreline educators have tweeted their support for their Seattle colleagues.

As well, despite a court order to go back to work, Pasco teachers are continuing their strike.

Update: you should check out the Soup for Teachers Facebook page.  They are putting together a petition page in support of teachers.  Amazing coordination and actions like this one:

Huge shout out to Barbara, the manager at the Starbucks store next to the Ballard Fred Meyer...she donated all the coffee when she found out what it was for!

Wasn't sure how literally I should take "Soup for teachers", but these two pots are headed to John Hay in a few minutes. 

Veggie minestrone on the left and hearty beef stew prepared to be celiac and gluten free diet friendly.


Anonymous said…
Ugh...that means they plan on being on strike into Friday, at a minimum?

Anonymous said…
If you listen to Phyllis Campano (bargaining chair), I think she is planning on a very long strike. I would seek long term care options if you can. So, so, so frustrated right now. With everyone. I hope that I am wrong, and they turn it around.

Anonymous said…
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Alex said…
Just be aware if you join that FB page that it may not be run the way you would expect. Great idea, and it's awesome the admin got it going, but she will ban you if you dissent in any way (e.g. her command that people use #blacklivesmatter when tweeting about the strike). She also yells at people with a bunch of exclamation points. Pretty weird.

I would recommend looking for a page specifically for your school to figure out how to help.
Anonymous said…
I hope that there is a "soup for parents needing childcare" movement as well. There are a lot of parents making hodgepodge arrangements to have somewhere to send their kids while they work, and they can't afford unplanned, additional full-day care for days on end. I know that some community centers are offering care, but some are already filled up. A young relative of mine supports the teachers but is already fretting over the extra cost of care, plus the juggling she and her husband will have to do with their jobs to get their child to and from care and themselves to and from work on time.

aack 2
I will reprint but NO anonymous comments - read our Comment policy above the Comment box and given yourself a name.

"looking into private school options if there are any space available. education is too important to be left to the whims of politics. this is our child's first time entering the public schools---what bad timing on our parts. the state needs to figure out a way to adequately fund education."

Again, if parents feel strongly either way - let the Board know. It could hasten the end of the strike.
Maureen said…
aak 2, There is a Facebook page for staff and parents who need childcare. It's called: "Seattle Parents Support Staff--and each other"
Anonymous said…
The latest tweet from Kyle Stokes. The Education Reporter at KPLU.

STRIKE: @seapubschools says district ready to negotiate, but @SeattleEA doubts they have a new proposal. No new talks yet. #SPSstrike #waedu

Anonymous said…
From the link to salary amounts: It looks like "bonuses" if tied to teachers mean TRI money, Career Ladder stipends, National Board stipend, and other extra responsibility stipends. The chart also adds in benefits allotment giving the total compensation package for each employee. Teachers in Seattle are not "bonus" eligible.
Anonymous said…
I hope the district immediately concedes the things it can without additional cost (or even savings) like standardized testing and such. It would show a lot of good faith.

Meg said…
The bonuses for administrators are kind of weird, but I am concerned by what it looks like it adds to.

With even basic checking against the district website, it would appear that the following categories are central administration jobs: deputy/assist supt, director/supervisor, professional and other district admin. There are a couple other categories that may have central administration employees, but also have some non-central employees.

Excluding the superintendent, that appears to add up to upwards of 320-some people (which, let's recognize is not the same as FTE, which will be less).

These categories total around $32.6M (plus or minus, although more likely plus, since I only did a quick review and excluded the superintendent). The 2014-15 central admin budget was $37.4M.

Does central admin only have just under $5M in expenses outside of compensation? Not from what I understand - which is that JSCEE incurs some pretty significant outsourcing expenses. Could this mean many central administration expenses are stuffed into other categories (like classifying professional development as a teaching cost, rather than a teaching support or central admin cost), leaving all of us - district administrators included - unaware of just how much of SPS resources are devoted to JSCEE? Looks like it.

97 people were classified as directors/supervisors. I kid you not.
Meg, once again, nailed it.

If you had the time to do some basic analysis so that people could compare what is happening at JSCEE and what the teachers are asking, that would be great.

I hope that people realize that if teachers work only 9.5 months a year, so do all those people at JSCEE.
Anonymous said…
Here's one thing that struck me - comparing 2014/2015 and 2013/2014 years:

14/15 - total employees = 6018
13/14 - total employees = 5916
Increase = 102 employees

14/15 total salary = $302,911,645.00
13/14 total salary = $287,302,971.00
Increase = 15,608,674 - which is about 150,000 per new employee (though I'm sure some of that increase was various raises)


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