Seattle Schools Updates

Editor's note: Given all these changes, I have asked for an organizational chart but have not yet received a reply.

From SPS Communications:  Dr. Concie Pedroza Named Chief of Student Supports
Dr. Concie Pedroza has been named Seattle Public Schools’ Chief of Student Supports. Dr. Pedroza will provide oversight of the district’s Advanced Learning, Special Education, Athletics, and Student Enrollment departments. Dr. Pedroza will report directly to Superintendent Denise Juneau and begins her new position on September 1, 2019.

In response to school feedback, this cabinet-level position will help improve coordination and integration of a continuum of student services. The position has been restructured to better meet the unique needs of our students, their families, and provide a higher level of support to school staff.
Another major appointment: Dr. Mia Williams Appointed Executive Director of the Department of African American Male Achievement
The Department of African American Male Achievement is a new department charged with advancement of African American males and elimination of disparities in educational and social outcomes for students, grades PreK-12.  

“Dr. Mia Williams is a force for students and her unwavering belief in students is contagious. For almost three decades, Dr. Williams has led transformational change in Seattle Public Schools, most recently as the principal at Aki Kurose Middle School. Under Mia's leadership, students’ social, emotional, and academic success have increased dramatically. The school’s student-centered approach and innovative programs focused on African American Male achievement have become a model for others– here in Seattle and nationally. She is the perfect person to lead the new department and I’m excited about what is next for African-American students and their families,” stated Superintendent Denise Juneau.
Mr. Caine Lowery has been chosen as the new principal of Aki Kurose Middle School, effective immediately. He moves into this position after serving as an assistant principal at Aki Kurose. 
Update on STEM by TAF at Washington Middle School
When would this program start?
As of August 2019, no decisions have been made except to be in discussion with each other. If any changes were to occur, the earliest programmatic adjustment would be for school year 2020-21.

Can you commit that a decision about TAF at Washington will be made well before the deadline for school choice for the school year 2020-21?
Yes, the decision will be made in advance of the open enrollment in early February 2020.
Opportunities to learn more:

August 17, 2019 (Saturday) - Bailey Gatzert Elementary School, 10 a.m. - 12 p.m.
September 28, 2019 (Saturday) – Washington Middle School, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. 

Update via Twitter from teacher Jesse Hagopian:
I’m truly honored to have won the “Social Justice Teacher of the Year” award from
@SeaPubSchools' Department of Racial Equity!


Anonymous said…
I am wary of a department being created to focus on a single group of disadvantaged students. Only because, as I saw at an SPS school I worked at, the intense focus on one group often leads to an academic decline in other groups. For instance, in this school, the performance of LatinX and Native students of both genders declined when we were asked to focus our student growth goals on African-American males. While I understand the need for this department, I hope that SPS is careful to focus on the academic improvement for ALL historically disadvantaged children.

Careful, and that's what I have thought as well - one group, one gender to focus on the hope that it will trickle down to others?

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