Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Lincoln and Dual Language/International Pathways

From Michele Aoki, International Education Administrator:

Dear Friends of SPS International Schools,

I have received a number of questions from parents in NW about the DLI [dual language immersion] Pathway when Lincoln opens in fall 2019. A meeting was held last week with district leadership which clarified the district’s plan. I prepared an update for the Intl. Ed FAQs page, and reviewed it with Enrollment Planning & Services:

District leadership has confirmed that there will not be any DLI Pathway changes or additions with the opening of Lincoln High School in fall 2019. Therefore, if the student qualified for placement at Ingraham based on the DLI Pathway from Hamilton, then the student can continue in that pathway. Lincoln High School, which is scheduled to open in 2019, will not be designated as an “International School,” and it will not be designated as a DLI Pathway from Hamilton.

For SE Seattle, there is also no change planned for the Student Assignment Plan in the designated DLI pathway for high school of Chief Sealth International HS.

Feel free to contact me if you have further questions.


Anonymous said...

It seems so odd not to send Hamilton dual language students to Lincoln. The school district needs to fill Lincoln and is sending students out of the neighborhood. What is included in the dual language program - just higher level language classes ... anything else?

N by NW

kellie said...

This is one of the silliest messages I have ever seen. So the official stance for SPS on high school boundaries is going to be

* The two language immersion elementary schools, that are located directly adjacent and in easy walking distance to Lincoln High School will NOT go to Lincoln.

* Therefore, we will need to draw significantly larger boundaries for Lincoln, to compensate for the fact that we are planning to bus LI students to Ingraham, which is geographically the furthest high school from JSIS and McDonald (Lincoln, Roosevelt, Ballard and Hale are all closer)

* This is effectively a commitment of approximately 100 students per grade between these two LI schools. In order to right-size Lincoln, the boundaries will need to be even larger to add back 100 students per grade who will be guaranteed placement at Ingraham.

* In other words, Magnolia or North Greenlake or the University District, or some combination, will need to be bussed to Lincoln, so that we can bus the students who live in walking distance and feed to Hamilton International Middle School to Ingraham.

Frankly, I did not think that it was possible to add more crazy to this process. I was wrong.

Melissa Westbrook said...

I agree, complete lunacy to not feed the right-in-the-neighborhood dual language schools into Hamilton and then onto Lincoln.

Melissa Westbrook said...

Kellie, what would be the end result to do this?

More unhappy parents. And if it really was your end gain to make the district look as dumb/incompetent/dysfunctional, yes, this is what you would do. It make charters look all the better (even as they don't have near the programs of SPS).

Anonymous said...

The only reason I can think of is perhaps that Lincoln will be the HCC pathway for north end, which needs to have enough space? Otherwise it seems like such a strange decision. All they needed to do was provide higher level Japanese and Spanish classes at Lincoln and those kids would be fine at Lincoln. It's not like IB is any kind of continuation from what the kids get at Hamilton.

N by NW said...

Wyeth Jesse told parents that Lincoln is not going to be the north end HCC site.

Now Michele Aoki has notified parents that Lincoln is not going to be a Dual-Language school.

If SPS isn't will to send Hamilton/Lincoln neighborhood students to Lincoln ... why should any other student have to be bussed there?

kellie said...

@ Mel,

Hamilton is mere blocks from Lincoln. Hamilton is the HCC and Language Immersion middle school. To make a determination that more than 50% of the students who attended Hamilton will NOT attend Lincoln is just .... silly is the politest word I can use.

The end result of this is that the boundaries for Ballard, Roosevelt, Ingraham will need to be significantly shifted so that the Lincoln attendance area can become a net-exporter of students.

In other words, there will be at least 1,000 students who will be shifted OUT of walkable schools and onto substantially longer bus rides for no measurable gains. Language Immersion was placed at Ingraham for capacity reasons. There was no space at Ballard or Roosevelt and sending the LI students to Ingraham helped capacity troubles at both Ballard and Roosevelt.

Michael Rice said...

Surprised wrote: It's not like IB is any kind of continuation from what the kids get at Hamilton.

Can you explain what you mean by this? I don't understand what you are saying.


Melissa Westbrook said...

Kellie, with any luck, staff will try to present these boundaries and the Board will, as they did with the Transition Plan to SAP, say nope.

Anonymous said...

This year most language immersion 9th graders coming from JSIS/HIMS went to Roosevelt (which also has good language offerings) or elsewhere. Only 8 or so went to Ingraham. It seems to me that IB/IBX is more popular with the HCC students. However, I do realize that the 2019 dual-language cohort (Mcdonald + larger JSIS class) will be larger.

Some numbers

Anonymous said...

Michael, I meant that students who attend elementary language immersion schools spend half their day immersed in the 2nd language. In middle school (Hamilton) they simply continue with that language by taking one class that is higher level of that language. It's not another topic taught in that language (immersion), it's just a higher level Japanese or Spanish language class. And as for "international" there really is not anything particularly international about the Hamilton experience. I like the Ingraham/IB program, but in my understanding, there really is not much that connects that student who has higher 2nd language ability to the IB curriculum. Other students do just as well in the IB program.

Anonymous said...

To clarify, just because Lincoln will not be a DLI pathway does not mean JSIS & McDonald kids will not go there. Traditionally, majority of the kids coming through the elementary Language Immersion programs don't follow the pathway to Ingraham. It is an optional choice and not a default assignment and not the right fit for all immersion kids. So, even if Lincoln is not the DLI pathway, there will be a fairly large number of kids that have followed the pathway through elementary and middle school that will be at Lincoln. I don't think this decision has a significant impact on Lincoln boundaries.

-JSIS/HIMS parent

WallingfordMom said...

In the past, JSIS students had an option of Roosevelt HS or Ingraham. Roosevelt is a school with a great reputation and allows LI students the option of advanced language classes, even without the language "pathway". It is easy to see how parents picked Roosevelt for their student.

The choice will now become Lincoln vs Ingraham. And Lincoln is an unknown. My guess is that many more parents will opt for sending their LI student to Ingraham via the language pathway. Especially if it means their 9th grader not having to switch high schools.

The first year of McDonald immersion students are now 7th graders and will be 9th graders when Lincoln reopens. There are many more LI students coming out of HIMS in the next few years than in the past. These students were the ones attending McDonald/JSIS when they were neighborhood schools, prior to switching them over to option schools. So these students live in the neighborhood immediately surrounding Lincoln.

I can't imagine why the school district would want to discourage these students from attending LHS.

Outsider said...

It seems like the character of Lincoln HS was set when they chose the principal -- someone not fond of programs like HCC or language immersion. Those programs couldn't be at Lincoln because the principal doesn't want them, right? In this sort of decision, ideology and loyalty among the bureaucrats is more important than logic and the wishes of parents by a city mile (or four).

kellie said...

@ numbers, parent, etc.

The drawing of boundaries is the creation of a commitment on the part of the school district. When the district draws a boundary they are committing that the students in that boundary will be served at that school. Program placement, is the process of reserving space at a school for a pathway or program.

Underlying this entire process is a mysterious formula that says ... X numbers of students will be generated by Y number of blocks. This formula is based on a national standard that all enrollment planning folks use. The formula is modified by "capture rates" but the formula is pretty static. In other words, Enrollment Planning has created a target number of city blocks that they use as the approximate size of the boundary for each high school. That is why all the maps have roughly the same approximate number of city blocks.

The interaction of these two dynamics means that the process is not-necessarily a direct reflection or an accurate representation of how parents make choices. That is one of the many reasons, staff is so intent on limiting choice.

By declaring that the Language Immersion pathway will be at Ingraham, not Lincoln, this then creates a commitment on the part of the school district to reserve at least 400 seats at Ingraham for Language Immersion ... into the future ... for the future cohorts, not for today's students. These reserved seats are then reflected into the boundary and Ingraham's boundary will be DRAWN smaller than if the pathway were not placed there.

School districts hate drawing boundaries. Typically a person in enrollment planning will redraw boundaries ONCE in their entire career. Therefore, there are some pretty rigid processes that all school districts follow in this process.

There has been lots of speculation as to why none of the maps reflected the 500 seat addition at Ingraham. Well .. this is most likely the answer. Those seats are now reserved for Language Immersion.

Now JSIS/HIMS parent's comment about percentage comes into play. If LI families do no elect the pathway, then Ingraham has choice seats available for other students. But the fact that LI families do or not select the pathway is not a very large factor in the drawing of the boundary. The boundary will be drawn "as if" Language Immersion families did select the pathway.

Anonymous said...

Will Lincoln determine prior to open enrollment whether students will be able to start in 4th year world language classes? That's information LI families will need to know in choosing whether or not to take the LI pathway.

It sounds like both HCC and LI pathways were excluded from the recent boundary map options. How can they possibly set boundaries without considering these and documenting the assumptions and figures behind their projections?


Anonymous said...

I still believe that LI should be an option program.


Anonymous said...

A high school immersion continuation program ideally is more than just advanced language classes. At Chief Sealth, students in the immersion program take AP Spanish Language and world history (taught in Spanish) in 9th grade. By 11th grade, students are taking IB History, taught in Spanish. For a high school to really provide a high quality immersion pathway, they need to offer content in the immersion language, not just language classes. There are other models too. In Utah, students start taking college-credited immersion courses in 10th grade: http://l2trec.utah.edu/utah-dual-immersion/index.php

The dual language/immersion task force has recommended a high school immersion course sequence and they clearly recommended that Lincoln be the designated immersion pathway site that continues from Hamilton. Dr. Aoki is just the messenger here. The decisions were made higher up. Here are the notes from the June 8 task force meeting: https://www.seattleschools.org/UserFiles/Servers/Server_543/File/District/Departments/International%20Education/DLI_TaskForce/Intl-DLI_Task_Force_Meeting_Summary_2017.06.08.pdf

Note the Superintendent's response to the Lincoln idea from 9/16 on page 4.

Immersion Advocate

Anonymous said...

I just read the cons which state "impact of enrollment at other schools". So likely that is the reason.

Anonymous said...

I think parents need to advocate for strong language programs at Lincoln--that might be a reachable goal considering the district's plan. I imagine almost all kids from McDonald/JSIS will choose to go to Lincoln due to its close proximity. Lincoln should follow Roosevelt as a good example for language offerings. It seems like Roosevelt would be a great model for any new high school.

However, this new district plan does mean that Hamilton kids living outside the geozone will not get to go to Lincoln as a language pathway. They will be sent back to their neighborhood high schools. That could be why the district made this decision.


kellie said...

So there was a taskforce that recommended Lincoln as the obvious choice for Language Immersion High School.

Superintendant Nyland replied Designating Lincoln as an International School can certainly be done for little cost as noted when Lincoln opens

It is clear that in the long term there will be no cost to running the pathway at Lincoln. However, this memo outlines the year one and year two costs to running Lincoln as LI.

9th Grade:
• Spanish 4 and Japanese 4 and content area (e.g., World History*) taught in the language

10th grade:
• AP Spanish 5 and AP Japanese 5 and content area (e.g., Global Leadership*) taught in the language

When Lincoln is running with all four grades those classes will just be part of the master schedule and available to all students. However, in the short run, there will need to be mitigation dollars to provide this year one. So now, there is a sudden proclamation that LI will not go to Lincoln.

This does not bode well. So essentially we are going to lock students and families into a long term solution to a one year mitigation dollar problem??? It will most likely be at least another 10 years before boundaries are changed again.

The real challenge here is that it looks-like this would need mitigation as a 9/10 school would not ordinarily provide 4th year language. However, by sending the LI cohort there, there would be more than enough students for this class to run cost effectively. The Spanish and Japanese teachers are already going to be be teaching the language, they simply need to offer one section at a higher level, not a lower level. In essence, Lincoln would only need to provide what Roosevelt is already providing.

Anonymous said...

To correct some facts here from Anonymous, according to the Hamilton registrar, some 20 DLI kids from HIMS opted to attend Ingraham this year (9th graders.)

Also, it is my understanding that "equity" is a reason why the district isn't following the superintendent's task force recommendations to make Lincoln a DLI school.

The district hasn't finished the SE pathway for DLI: Chief Sealth is the only South End DLI school. Adding a new DLI high school in the North End made for bad equity optics, in the district's view. Forget what makes sense for kids and seizing an opportunity when it makes sense for kids, it's all about appearances. North v. South.

AND, the district didn't want to "tell" Lincoln's principal what her school would be.

--Concerned Parent

Anonymous said...

I had little hope that SPS would somehow pull together a solid plan for the opening of Lincoln, but holy expletive, what in the world is going on?? Why is there such a reluctance to serve the students who live in Lincoln's neighborhood at Lincoln? Lincoln is a logical location for a LI immersion pathway. Is the ultimate plan to get rid of LI altogether, just like HCC?

The planning just seems so backward. A logical approach might be: hmmm, we have students coming from schools x, y, and z, and being split from high schools a, b, and c, what courses and programs should we offer to maintain continuity for students? Instead they are trying to create some new vision of high school with no effort to consider where students are now.


Anonymous said...

Concerned Parent - Would you happen to know how many of the 20 DLI kids from HIMS were HCC-qualified and would've picked Ingraham for IBX and not necessarily because it is the language pathway?

- more info

Anonymous said...

Isn't Hamilton currently a combination of neighborhood kids, DI and HCC? Can't they maintain the proportions and extrapolate out to Lincoln high school, with the addition of McClure students and any new DI students in the northend that come out of the woodwork?

Damn, we need a new principal and enrollment admin to get this right. A team willing to look at the population and programs and build a school boundary plan that creates the least amount of chaos and disruption and takes transportation and C&I into account.

What would the numbers look like if all northend HCC went to Lincoln with LI and a small neighborhood boundary, plus the ability for those pathway students to select their neighborhood schools, with Mag/QA still assigned to Ballard as their neighborhood school?

More Maps

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

It just makes sense for Lincoln HS to be DLI. It is right across the street from Hamilton. Could the schools share teachers, especially in the first years? Wouldn't this help with mitigation costs?

What is the reasoning behind this decision? Is there reasoning behind this decision? Some people suggested that it is based on a certain principal's preference. This would be short-sided as Principals are switched around frequently.

Is it equity? We need to find out the reasoning, and then make our case. Do we call a special meeting? Testify at school board meetings? Go to the Press? All of the above?

Anonymous said...

@More info.

To clarify, just because an HCC student chooses to attend Ingraham it does NOT mean that they are choosing IBX. Most of the HCC-qualified students who are DLI (at this stage) are NOTintending to pursue IBx, from conversations I've had with these families. Ingraham administration is strongly discouraging the IBX pathway.

Several of those HCC/DLI families WERE contemplating IBX if it would mean their kids could stay at Ingraham when Lincoln opens in 2019. Now that the word seems to be that Lincoln will open in fall 2019 with grades 9/10 only, that's a moot point.

To answer your question, most DLI families from Hamilton were HCC or Spectrum.

Concerned parent

Anonymous said...

@Concerned parent - Thank you for clarifying that. I have heard about IBX potentially going away although it sounds like this year's freshman class is still following the IBX route. It sounds to me like DLI kids are picking Ingraham for the IB/IBX program rather than any language offerings and perhaps some families picked it to avoid their juniors having to move when Lincoln opened.

Since there really is no Dual Language Immersion at HIMS, I would think DLI kids may opt to stay at Lincoln if there were enough advanced language offerings (like Roosevelt, for example). I'm not entirely convinced that making Lincoln a DLI pathway will necessarily make them stay at Lincoln or that not making it a DLI pathway will make kids go elsewhere. Whether Lincoln area kids stay at Lincoln or choose other pathways really depends on what Lincoln has to offer. I know I would prefer that my kids go to Lincoln when it opens. However, the uncertainty around Lincoln's programming is what may nudge kids to go elsewhere.

- More info

Anonymous said...

Why would you prefer to send your kids to Lincoln? Are you drawn to the location or curriculum?

Fairmount Parent

Anonymous said...

@Fairmount Parent - We are solidly within the Lincoln boundary. What I was saying was that I would prefer to send my kids to Lincoln which would be a lot closer rather than pick a DLI pathway school that may be farther away. But only if Lincoln has the appropriate set of classes that they need. At this point nobody really knows what curriculum or class offerings will be provided at Lincoln. If Lincoln becomes a solid comprehensive high school with a variety of class offerings, most DLI kids would not try to opt out just because they had a pathway to a different high school.

-More info

Unknown said...
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Anonymous said...

We're literally a block away from Lincoln. We toured back when it was Licton Springs; it wasn't for us. But it would be great if our child (9th grade this year) could have a walkable school.

Regarding HIMS, we are also former JSIS/HIMS parents. It was disappointing to learn that Hamilton is not "dual-immersion" at all, but just offering language classes above JPN 101. I wish the district would not advertise it as such.