In Other News about Public Education

Update 2: WSSDA has a more complete list of pending legislation.

Update:  also in the last days of the legislature, on Friday, E2SHB 1599 passed the House. (Thank you to Kent SD parent, Nancy Chamberlain for the info.)

It removes the SBA as a graduation requirement. Students would still take it for data purposes, but it would not keep students from graduating.

Essentially, a Student can meet graduation requirements by getting above the cut score on the ELA and math SBA, or fulfill one of the pathways, including certain scores on SAT or ACT, or taking certain dual-credit courses as outlined in the bill. 
This is quite the bill.  It includes:

- Mandating school districts to develop Academic Acceleration by 2021-22. This is an auto-enrollment into rigorous (AP/IB classes or other dual credit) courses for students at or above standards on the SBA.
- Expedited appeals waiver was extended for the classes of 2019 and 2020.

end of update

Mayor Durkan announced a plan for Fort Lawton.   From KING-5:

Mayor Jenny Durkan transmitted legislation to City Council Wednesday that would turn 34 acres of the former military site into mixed-income housing, parks, and recreational space.
CM Sally Bagshaw said this (at the Mayor's announcement page):
"We have struck a deal with Seattle Public Schools to preserve land for their sports purposes too. Let’s stop debating and start building!” 

Parks and Park Related:   

Passive recreation      13 acres   
Active recreation with opportunity for acquisition by Seattle Public Schools      6 acres   
Forest land incorporated into Discovery Park      4-5 acres   
Several bills are coming out of the end of this legislative session of interest to parents:

-Ending Daylight Savings Time   Congress would have to sign off on this one.

- Making the MMR vaccine mandatory.   From the Seattle Times:
The Washington state Senate late Wednesday voted to remove parents’ ability to exempt their children from a vaccination for personal or philosophical reasons. But the stricter rules would apply only to one vaccine – the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccination.
Parents would continue to be able to have their children opt out of other required school vaccinations, citing personal or philosophical exemptions. Religious exemptions will still be allowed for all vaccinations, including MMR.
For many years, only two states — West Virginia and Mississippi — required vaccines for all children, with no personal or religious exemptions allowed. In 2015, California passed legislation becoming the third state to eliminate both personal and religious exemptions for vaccine requirements.
The vote in Washington comes as measles cases in the U.S. are on pace to set a record for the most instances in 25 years. The disease was considered eliminated in 2000.


Anonymous said…
NYC is also mandating the vaccination and fining parents $1000 who don't vaccinate due to the recent record outbreak in NYC. Religious exemptions still are allowed. It's the epicenter of the outbreak accounting for nearly half of all new cases.

Anonymous said…
What has the world come to.

Education Rationing said…
Mandating school districts to develop Academic Acceleration by 2021-22. This is an auto-enrollment into rigorous (AP/IB classes or other dual credit) courses for students at or above standards on the SBA.

Take that, school districts. Stop education rationing!!!
Anonymous said…
Does E2SHB 1599 allow ACT or SAT in lieu of SBA, or do students still need to take the SBA before they can use an alternate path, such as ACT or SAT scores?

Reading 1599 said…
Here are a couple of highlights from the bill

"Only objective assessments that are comparable in rigor to the state assessment are authorized as an alternative assessment. Before seeking an alternative assessment, the legislature expects students to make a genuine effort to meet state standards, through regular and consistent attendance at school and participation in extended learning and other assistance programs."

"The requirement to earn a certificate of academic achievement to qualify for graduation from a public high school concludes with the graduating class of 2019. The obligation of qualifying students to earn a certificate of individual achievement as a prerequisite for graduation from a public high school concludes with the graduating class of 2021."

"By June 1, 2019, the state board of education shall convene a work group to inform the governor, the legislature, and the public about barriers to mastery-based learning in Washington state…"
Reading 1599 said…
Looks like the ACT or SAT or community college/college classes demonstrating a higher level than the the SBA can be substituted for the SBA. Looks like other substitutions that are "comparable in rigor" will also be possible.
Outsider said…
What will happen to bell times if the lunatic daylight savings time bill passes? Will they really have elementary school students going to school an hour before dark for much of the winter?

I noticed this article:

Which says essentially that more evening light means less sleep and worse health. But more time to walk your dog in the evening, and that's what really matters, right?
DC Time said…
Doesn't matter if WA state passes it. The federal govt. would still need to approve.

Curious parent said…
Aha! So this is likely what all the cryptic, secret property purchase references by the board have maybe been about. Makes you wonder what SPS is going to do with so many sports fields way out there... Guess it's not going to be a bus barn after all.
Anonymous said…
"Mandating school districts to develop Academic Acceleration by 2021-22. This is an auto-enrollment into rigorous (AP/IB classes or other dual credit) courses for students at or above standards on the SBA."

Uh-oh. SPS is going to hate this, as it would allow advanced students to continue to advance, thus maintaining or widening the gap.

Any guess as to how SPS will try to screw it up? Maybe they'll auto-enroll all students into AP/IB classes, then make the classes a little easier (even if AP exam pass rates are low, as happened elsewhere). Or maybe they'll drastically reduce AP offerings, saying you can only take a couple--not per year, but total. Or maybe they'll auto-enroll you into AP French, when you've only ever taken Spanish. I'm sure there are lots of ways they can figure out to mess with students who are at or above SBA standards.

I assume they'll also have to have a robust un-enrollment process, which could involve a lot of scheduling hassles (and teacher class reassignments) if many kids don't want those AP/IB classes into which they are auto-enrolled. A student scoring "at standard" on the SBA doesn't necessarily want AP classes. Nor do all students scoring above standard. Being an average, at-grade-level 10th grader, for example, doesn't mean you're ready for (or have the time for or interest in) college-level (in theory) work.

Can't we keep college and high school separate for the most part--unless kids want to mix them? Are we trying to turn college into the next high school? Does anyone really think that AP classes taken in 10th, 11th and 12th grades necessarily serve students well when they actually get to college? Does your 3 (our of 5) on AP class two years ago really mean you have the necessary foundation to skip a prerequisite in college? Or skip a bunch of breadth requirements and graduate early, with fewer actual college classes under your belt?

I feel like we're turning college into high school to some extent. Lots of remediation needed, and now more and more kids taking AP classes that don't mean much. Forcing colleges to give credit for AP scores of 3 is absurd. A 3 does not mean you've mastered the material by any means. Why should you get credit for that?

college lite
Anonymous said…
AP and IB classes are the only rigorous classes high school students can access without enrolling in running start which is why my kids took them. They are not going to graduate from college early. Instead, they’ll add a minor in an area of interest within their four years of college.

The district’s problem with this will be that an academic acceleration policy assumes that before AP and IB classes are available, there will be separate courses of various levels of difficult and students who are not working at grade level will be taking easier classes. That won’t go over well in SPS.

Fairmount Parent
Anonymous said…
What I don't understand about the vaccination requirements is why are they only for children? Why aren't adults required to update their MMR vaccines or even show proof of vaccination? Why don't they require people visiting from overseas to have proof of MMR vaccine? A lot of these measles cases have adults from overseas as patient 0.

Anonymous said…
It's not just adults from overseas. Before the vaccine was used in 1957, no one got the vaccine, so adults born before 1957 generally are not vaccinated (though most have antibodies from actually having measles, and they'll confirm you don't want to get it). People born between 1957 and 1989 generally have had only one dose, one dose being about 93% effective and good enough to provide herd immunity if enough people have had it. Since 1989, people have gotten two doses, and doctors now sometimes recommend those born before 1989 get a second dose. Two doses of the vaccine are 97% effective.

In other words, almost all Gen-Xers could use a booster shot if they haven't already had one, except of course for those who are immunocompromised and cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons.

Gen-Xers Vaccinate!
Anonymous said…
I have no issue with my kid applying credits toward a 4 year degree. Even when I went to college at UW many students took 5 years to earn a BA/BS, not 4 due to specific pre-req classes needed to enter your major.
In addition, while they may earn college credit for running start or IB/AP classes, many fields now require a Masters degree. The road is increasingly becoming longer to many careers. Many jobs that used to require a 4 year degree, now require a Masters or higher. In the case of a physical therapist for example the requirement is now a doctorate. Even jobs that required a high school degree years ago, now require at least a two year degree.

Anonymous said…
There is no reason for a person who already has antibodies to get a shot. There has NEVER been a death from Measles or Mumps so way get another shot. If you allow an infected adult to come in contact with a person without antibodies then there's a strong possibility of passing the disease on. So they have a weak argument when they say that children must be vaccinated except those who are medically fragile and of coarse it's all to help unborn and other younger vaccinated infants right? So why didn't the mom get vaccinated before she got pregnant? Why are un-vaccinated adults allowed on school grounds? These thing just don't add up except for the manufacture of the vaccine. The state should demand free or next to free shots for everyone because the state of Washington will most likely have to pay for the vaccines if they are going to require students to have them. More tax dollars and less for schools.

So Sad
Anonymous said…
@So Sad

You seem to be unaware of the fact that pregnancy causes reduced immune response in pregnant women; otherwise, the immune system would attack the fetus. It is very common for pregnant women with complete vaccination histories to develop diseases to which they are exposed and against which they were vaccinated in the past, especially colds and flu, but also chicken pox and measles or mumps. Something as "mild" as chicken pox will cause fatal birth defects in a fetus,

Adults working with children in schools generally are required to have these vaccines as a condition of employment.

There have indeed been deaths, usually of infants, from measles (about 2 per 1,000 cases). These are 100% preventable deaths.

Measles can also cause pneumonia (1 in 20 children who get measles) and encephalitis (causing 1 out 1,000 children who get it to develop deafness or an intellectual disability).

Subacute sclerosing panencephalitis is rare (11 out of 100,000 cases) but occurs 7-10 years after getting measles, causing progressive brain disease resulting in disability and death.

Actual deaths from mumps are almost nonexistant. However, among other complications, mumps can cause testicular atrophy and sterility in males. It can also cause encephalitis, meningitis, pancreatitis, and nephritis causes long-term or permanent problems such deafness. It is no minor disease.

Gen-Xers Vaccinate!
Anonymous said…
The flu is 100,000 times more fatal than the measles. Why aren't flu shot mandatory?

Just Wondering
Anonymous said…
Flu mutates seasonally. Measles and mumps do not. Flu this has higher mortality because it is essentially a different virus every so many months.

Flu shots should be required, too, but they would need to be updated every four months to keep up with mutations, which isn't economically feasible. Once there is a single vaccine for all flus, then it will be.

Anonymous said…
It's seems weird, I work in a very large company with international visitors everyday.

None of my Jewish friends are vaccinated and I would guess a large percentage of our local workers are also not vaccinated.

I havn't heard of a single person contracting the measles, any ideas why adults don't seem to contract the measles? Maybe software industry workers are immune?

Just Wondering
Anonymous said…
You're definitely immune to something, I'd say!


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