Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Tuesday Open Thread

King County Elections says that everyone should have received their ballots by now for the August 6th primary.  Check with them if you haven't.

Here's an idea for summer fun - abandoning your kids in a wooded area in the dark.  That's just the Dutch giving tough love to their kids.  From the NY Times.
This is the Dutch scouting tradition known as a “dropping,” in which groups of children, generally pre-teenagers, are deposited in a forest and expected to find their way back to base. It is meant to be challenging, and they often stagger in at 2 or 3 in the morning.

The Dutch — it is fair to say — do childhood differently. Children are taught not to depend too much on adults; adults are taught to allow children to solve their own problems. Droppings distill these principles into extreme form, banking on the idea that even for children who are tired, hungry and disoriented, there is a compensatory thrill to being in charge.
Important story about your kids and Facebook's Messenger Kids.  From The Verge:
Facebook’s Messenger Kids app is built around a simple premise: children shouldn’t be able to talk to users who haven’t been approved by their parents. But a design flaw allowed users to sidestep that protection through the group chat system, allowing children to enter group chats with unapproved strangers.

We recently notified some parents of Messenger Kids account users about a technical error that we detected affecting a small number of group chats,” a Facebook representative said. “We turned off the affected chats and provided parents with additional resources on Messenger Kids and online safety.”

It’s unclear how long the bug was present in the app, which launched with group features in December 2017.

The privacy flaw is particularly legally sensitive because Messenger Kids is designed for children under the age of 13, and thus subject to the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). Some privacy groups have already accused Messenger Kids of violating COPPA by collecting user data, and this latest privacy flaw will only heighten those concerns.
What are the true graduation rates for Washington State public high schools? Crosscut tackles that issue.
According to data released by the U.S. Department of Education earlier this year, 79.4% of students in the state graduated on time during the 2016-17 school year, compared with the national average of 84.6%. That places the Washington 44th in the nation for on-time graduation.

A string of recent reports issued by the Office of the Washington State Auditor shows that at least 18 of Washington’s 295 public school districts have failed to comply with federal graduation data-reporting requirements, potentially affecting the data’s accuracy.

At issue is how students who have transferred in or out of high schools are factored into graduation-rate data. The districts in question failed to properly confirm and document such cases.
That includes Seattle SD.

Charter schools are notorious for boasting about the high grad rates but when you ask them how many 9th graders they started with and how many they finish with, crickets.

New lead general counsel for Seattle Public Schools - Greg Narver.  Mr. Narver comes via the City Attorney's office.  He graduated from Garfield High School.  This marks the second new hire from the City's employee rolls - the first was Fred Podesta who is the district's COO.

What's on your mind?


Alsept Teresa said...

As a child I wasn’t dropped off by my parents in the woods however we did go out in the woods and swamps( I grew up in Florida) and were gone all day. Many times we were lost and have to find our way out. We would build forts and tree houses out there. I think it encourages independence and problem solving skills in children.

Melissa Westbrook said...

Teresa, oh yeah, we went off in the summer all day (my mom was at work) and just went playing everywhere. It does teach you a lot especially about finding fun that isn't on a screen.

Anonymous said...

When I was a kid we had to wait for everything. To buy a record, our parent to pick us up, a favorite TV show or a letter. Now all of that is gone. No one waits anymore. Standing in the bank line whenever I do that is a great time to catch up on email.

I'm not a big fan of single event hazing which is what this sounds like. But anytime my kid wants to hang out with friends, or on their own, in nature... I have no objections.


Amplify That! said...

It is abundantly clear that accountability is an illusive concept. The current board struggles. I expect little from the next board.

Anonymous said...

It's too bad they went in-house to get a new head of the legal department. Do we really want/need somebody who comes with the dysfunctional SPS DNA?


Melissa Westbrook said...

Concerned,as I say, the new head of Legal is from the City.

Anonymous said...

Melissa, the new head of Legal came up through Seattle Schools, that is what Concerned is getting at.


Anonymous said...

SPS is asking for feedback on their new logos and branding. While I appreciate that there is an attempt to focus on goals (vis a vis the strategic plan), I feel that the time/energy/money could be used more effectively. However, I did complete the survey (I just can't say no to giving feedback) :)-TeacherMom

Melissa Westbrook said...

Reader, according to the district:

"He began working at the Seattle City Attorney’s Office in 2006, and for the past four years served as Chief of its Civil Division."

How did he come thru SPS.

Teacher Mom, I just saw that. Pretty funny.

Anonymous said...

I think we need more level headed, cool tempered and knowledgeable candidates than Hampson and Rankin. Yes, equity is a huge issue. But so are capacity, transparency, accountability and budget crisis.

Other candidates

Melissa Westbrook said...

Person who keeps reprinting the same tired comment - support your candidates, don't attack me. Tell people why you support them, why they would be better.

I'm not running.

Anonymous said...

Dropping sounds fantastic. Frankly, most American children seem to be far too dependent on adults, which is the fault of those adults.

I think by "coming up through SPS" meant being a student in this district's system.


Anonymous said...

Given the large turnover on the board & a new superintendent, one factor in my board votes will be institutional memory. Those involved at district level for longest.

-HS Parent

Anonymous said...

@MW, I just read your latest rant at the stranger.

I think for your own sake that you need to stop commenting.

You have weaved a string of comments were you claim to be native, Mexican, autistic and a sibling of a gay man.

What's the point?


Melissa Westbrook said...

Owler, I have NEVER claimed to be native. Never.

I have NEVER claimed to be autistic. As I have said previously, I sure wish some people would learn to read because I was speaking of one of my sons.

I said my brother was gay (and he is) because one hyperventilating person said the blog/me were "queerphobic."Just not true and my record proves that.

I am part-Mexican (and proudly so). One grandmother was Mexican. Anyone who tries to tell me what my ethnic/racial background AND the influence of how/where you were raised is someone not to trust. I would NEVER do that to anyone and I find it appalling that there are those who are trying to parse who I am.

I know the running theme is "stop Melissa at all costs" and "we will throw everything we can at her and see what sticks."

That only makes supporters of that candidate look vicious and makes you wonder what the candidate is like. Especially, very especially, when they do not sign their real names to their comments.

Again, I'm not running and I find it interesting that I'm being treated as such. That some don't want to talk about their candidate but rather, about me, speaks volumes about desperation.

That helps no candidate.

Anonymous said...

@MW, I'm not your enemy. People don't tend to read and entire comment section start to finish they only see your latest comment.

By all means keep blogging but maybe just tone it down on other sites.


S L said...

These comments don't seem like they were by the real Owler. The real Owler writes things like, "Too much virtue signaling for my taste."

These comments seem like they're by someone who really doesn't want Melissa commenting or presumably any of the thousands or tens of thousands of other Seattle residents who would agree with her if they paid attention to schools.

Anonymous said...

If you say so


Anonymous said...

I do too. Or as you would say I do 2.


my ass