Disqus

Friday, October 04, 2019

Friday Open Thread

Looks like staff at the top levels at JSCEE are shifting.  


They are looking for a new person to head Advanced Learning and other areas and the job description is interesting.  The official title is
Partnerships Policy & Strategic Comm, Adv Learning Prog Spec-Elem/Sec/Special.  There is a “supervisor of AL” and this position oversees that one. As well, word is that head of Technology, John Krull, is leaving.

 I had an interview with Wyeth Jesse who is heading up Student Services that I’ll write up soon about changes in Advanced Learning.
The Seattle Times has again endorsed Leslie Harris to retain her Board position.

As you may recall, Superintendent Juneau does a weekly, Juneau’s Journal, and it seems she may be doing it in video form.  Not sure that’s so great because if there is no transcript, it makes more work for anyone wanting to quote her directly.

Anyone attend a school board candidate forum this week?  Please weigh in.

SPS Flu Clinics schedule

There’s an article in the Seattle Times about #CleartheLists, an effort to help teachers fund classroom supplies in schools across the nation.  It’s heartwarming to read how many people have stepped up to help.  But what struck me was the notation that OSPI doesn’t track this data point nor do most districts.  I suspect SPS doesn’t track it.  Makes it very easy to allow teachers to carry this burden and, for those that don’t have PTSA support, they have to go without.  I thought SPS was a data-driven district.

What’s on your mind?

79 comments:

Anonymous said...

That Advanced Learning position is all over the place and what's needed most (professional development) has only 10% of the job dedicated to it:

10% Implementation of delivery of consistent, evidence-based practices

Resources building staff with information on current evidence-based practices befitting gifted students, students with Twice Exceptional needs (2e), and English language Learners (ELLs); Supports and consults with building leaders, in implementing school systems resulting in growth outcomes for highly capable and advanced learning students including (but not limited to):
planning and delivering data-driven professional development, establishment of data-driven teacher collaboration opportunities, assistance with instructional supervision and coaching, aligning resources to advanced learning needs, designing varied and flexible instructional delivery models supporting appropriate advancement and acceleration opportunities for learners, etc


reader

Carol Simmons said...

Two former students of Seattle Public Schools are being honored at the UW MAP Bridging the Gap Breakfast benefiting the MAP Endowed Scholarship Fund at the HUB Ballroom on Oct 19th. This is the 25th year of celebrating Diversity, supporting Scholarships and recognizing Alumni. To register for this milestone event call 206 543 0540 by Oct. 10th. Everyone is welcome.

GLP said...

John Krull was abruptly let go during the summer with no explanation to the rest of the staff. Technology Services reports up to Jolynn Berge now.

Anonymous said...

I thought they filled the AL position with the former principal at Orca K8? Or, was that another position?

SE Mama

Anonymous said...

@GLP Did the removal of Krull have anything to do with the new teachers contract? Thought I read it's funded by tech levy dollars. Was there a conflict with that? Or did he fail to deliver enough tech to implement Amplify?

What Gives?

Mom said...

If it has not done so already I would urge the school district to issue an ALERT to ALL high school and middle schools EVERY STUDENT SHOULD BE AWARE. There are pills out there that can kill you. A ballard high school student has died - and this is AFTER 2 students in sammamish died.

Seattle Schools - please issue an alert before more students die. While you are doing this please also alert students to the deaths from vaping. Please get out this urgent message.

https://komonews.com/news/local/ballard-high-school-student-dies-from-accidental-fentanyl-overdose

Anonymous said...

Posted on an earlier thread but I'd like to bring more parent's attention to the absurd “ethic studies in math” framework document, if they haven't already seen it ( PUBLIC SCHOOLS K-12 Math Ethnic Studies Framework (20.08.2019) https://www.k12.wa.us/sites/default/files/public/socialstudies/pubdocs/Math%20SDS%20ES%20Framework.pdf) and the self-proclaimed teacher-activist head of the Ethnic Studies department that developed this as part of an Ethnic Studies curriculum designed to be embedding in every subject, every grade, throughout SPS.

As others have said - many people support the idea of an Ethnic Studies curriculum, but it needs to be sound, not biased toward a particular agenda, and there needs to be public comments and an approval process.
I'm not sure the person that heads the ES department is the best representative for SPS when it comes to outreach about ethnic studies, I feel like will likely alienate all but the most hardened SJW types. Her latest post defending her stance on nonWestern math on her blog (https://teacheractivist.com/2019/10/03/math-is-ethnic-studies/) starts like this

"Recently, the work of the Seattle Public Schools Ethnic Studies Advisory Board has come under fire by conservative talk show hosts and Seattle’s own preeminent racist blogger, Melissa Westbrook. Critics accuse us of “dumbing down math.” Sitting school board director, Rick Burke’s wife, Lihn-Co Nguyen, has even hopped on the ethnic studies bashing."

She concludes her piece with this "When Black and Brown students learn math through an ethnic studies pedagogy, it is an act of liberation. Undoing the colonization of math as a “Western” concept is resistance. Becoming a mathematician as a person of color is taking action against a system that heavily privileges white people, especially white men. Ethnic studies belongs in math just as much, if not more so, as it does in history."

I hope parents will take the time to explore all what is happening in SPS. I know there is a lot to digest what with budgets, and curriculum adoptions, and changes to AL, and staff cuts, and schedule changes, and students dying of fentanyl ODs but important to think about the direction the district is heading and who is steering the ship.


SMH so fast I'm dizzy

Anonymous said...

SPS has posted a general message to their website, but it's not clear how the message is getting to students at schools.

https://seattleschools.org/district/calendars/news/what_s_new/fentanyl_warning

Issaquah's response:

https://www.issaquah.wednet.edu/news-details/2019/10/01/isd-board-statement-on-opiate-crisis-impact-to-our-communities

Anonymous said...

I’d like more clarity around what type of Ethnic Studies curriculum is being developed, how it will be implemented, what the stated goals are. There does appear to be published evidence showing social and academic benefits (someone was asking on another thread) but these are for clearly defined student populations and the approach and goals of ES are different depending on whether the curriculum is targeted to improve specific outcomes in a particular ethnic group or to influence the attitudes of a diverse group including white students. I'll post the link and info from the NEA research review on Academic and social value of ethnic studies in a separate post.

So which approach is the SPS developed curriculum taking? It seems like the intention is to influence the attitudes of the diverse (and almost 50% white) student population in SPS yet also somehow specifically improve outcomes for a targeted ethnic group. But there does not appear to be evidence that a 'one size fits all’ curriculum will have the intended benefits in both the targeted ethnic group and diverse groups of students.

See next post

Just the facts

Anonymous said...

(contd from previous comment) The following is from the the NEA research review on Academic and social value of ethnic studies (http://www.nea.org/assets/docs/NBI-2010-3-value-of-ethnic-studies.pdf)

1. Ethnic Studies Designed Primarily for Members of the Group under Study

Ethnic studies curricula designed primarily for students who are members of the group under study are usually part of a broader effort to improve the quality of education afforded to those students, and are often used in conjunction with other dimensions such as culturally relevant pedagogy, teachers who are members of the group, and links to the community. Ethnic studies curricula are supported by research documenting a positive relationship between the racial/ethnic identity of students of color and academic achievement, as well as research on their impact. Three studies with middle school students documented high levels of student engagement when literature by authors within the students’ ethnic background was used. Research on five literacy curricula (three involving African American secondary students and two involving Native American students) documented significant growth in students’ literacy skills. Research on two math/science curricula (both involving Native American students) found a positive impact on student achievement and attitudes toward learning. Research on five curricula (three in social studies, one in literature, and one in ‘life skills’) found a positive impact on students’ achievement and sense of agency. Only one reviewed study did not have the intended impact, largely because how ethnic culture was conceptualized in the curriculum conflicted with how students lived culture everyday


2. Ethnic Studies Curricula for Diverse Student Groups that include White Students

Ethnic studies curricula designed for diverse student groups that include White students, while sometimes aiming to improve student achievement, usually focus more on influencing students’ understanding of and attitudes about race and/or people who differ from themselves. Several studies, mostly with children, reveal features of curricula that make a difference. Simply infusing representation of racially and ethnically diverse people into curriculum only marginally affects students’ attitudes because racial attitudes are acquired actively rather than passively. Curricula that teach directly about racism have a stronger positive impact than curricula that portray diverse groups but ignore racism. A large body of research in higher education that examines the impact of various diversity experiences, particularly course-taking and interracial interaction, reports quite consistently that such courses have a positive impact on ‘democracy outcomes,’ particularly when they include cross-group interaction and particularly on White students, since exposure to a systematic analysis of power and cross-racial interaction is newer to White students than to students of color. Research on the academic impact of ethnic studies curricula designed for diverse student groups, while not voluminous, shows that such curricula, when designed to help students grapple with multiple perspectives, produces higher levels of thinking.


Just the Facts

Anonymous said...

(Contd from prev comment) This brings me to another point. As described in an earlier post, a teacher tweeted a complaint that the Ethnic Studies HS class was filled with white HCC students and not the SOC that it was designed for (implicit in this was criticism of the white HCC students for taking the class). Yet as far as one can tell from the course description this class was not, in fact, an ES class designed for a targeted ethnic group to help improve their engagement and academic growth.

It seems the ES campaigners may be conflating two completely separate things here. If we are to have Ethnic Studies classes targeted to help improve engagement and outcome in specific ethnic groups (for which there is evidence of benefit), then it should be explicitly stated as such so that white students know they need not apply. If the intention is to have a broad ethnic studies curriculum aimed at influencing the broader SPS student population (almost 50% white) attitudes about race and understanding of historical and present day oppression etc then we should be clear about that. The latter is most successful in the setting of racially diverse groups of students but there is no evidence that it improves the academic outcomes of one particular group, nor does it set out to.

Sorry for the long comment : )

Just the facts

Anonymous said...

Talk about hypocritical. Melissa got kicked off a site because she copied people's comments from that site to this site. TCG just did the same thing. She just posted on SEA Solidarity and it includes lengthy cut and paste from this blog.
Teach

HCC Organizing said...

HCC families are organizing. Circulate this document throughout your community.

Hello! Thank you for your willingness to volunteer to advocate for Seattle Public School's Hicap/AL program. We are collecting volunteers with two goals:
(1) Recruit volunteers to take certain actions (attend meetings, provide testimony at certain events, etc.)
(2) Build a list of people who are interested in advocacy for future opportunities.


https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdV7bF2xC7WZHXzqteUShvipVP3XfbRfZNkkSEiHxjX4wleVQ/viewform?fbclid=IwAR0fFHphHQeRmLqfEXMh_e1iTjGvS1K2iM5Me7sX4ACsIk29urwoldb7vT8

Anonymous said...

Perhaps @MIke (from another thread) has the answers to my question about the unclear goals for ES.
"As silly as the idea is, have you considered that critical pedagogy underlying SPS Ethnic Studies is intended to rouse SoC to rise up against their "oppressors"? This is not a course for white oppressors to discover the breadth and depth of cultures their failing sham of a democracy has crushed on its way to world domination. Is it possible you've assumed today's public education is for the whole public rather than for the systemically oppressed?"

Bears thinking about given what @SMH so fast says above.

Just the facts

Juneau's Legacy said...

Juneau's dream of pitting communities has come to fruition.

Anonymous said...

Ethnic Studies can’t just be a siloed class or curriculum that is used as virtue burnishing. It isn’t a curriculum per se, but more a methodology and point of view that is embedded in the total school experience and that includes how the school is structured, who learns with who and who progresses and how. So, that does include math and science, which as disciplines in America, have too long been identified with and considered the purview of white males, although the fundamental knowledge is multicultural and always has been. Those same white males have been some of the most ardent protectors, at the school level, of maintaining hierarchical barriers to those disciplines and advocating for those students that most resemble themselves.

Investing the school learning experience with Ethnic Studies will expand learning and broaden horizons for everyone.

Salut


Elsa said...

Of course the times would endorse Harris.

Inverse Oppression said...

Uh, the whole ethnic studies math thing is pretty unhinged. It makes it sound like only mathematicians use math?!? There's not very many mathematicians in this world, but there are a heck of a lot of people using math. Sheesh.

No mention of SPS using Singapore Math?

Also, "Who is Smart? Who is not Smart?" It's like the ethnic studies framework was written by people with a fixed mindset. Also, why capitalize Smart.

Also, "SWBAT identify the inherent inequities of the standardized testing system used to oppress and marginalize people and communities of color."

But Asians score the best on SBAC:
SBAC Third Grade ELA Demographics
- 7.2% of American Indian third-graders score a 4 on the SBAC ELA.
- 7.7% of Black/African Americans third-graders score a 4 on the SBAC ELA.
- 8.2 of Hispanic third-graders score a 4 on the SBAC ELA.
- 23.3% of White/Caucasian third-graders score a 4 on the SBAC ELA.
- 31.5% of Asian third-graders score a 4 on the SBAC ELA.

SBAC Third Grade Math Demographics
- 4.7% of American Indian third-graders score a 4 on the SBAC Math.
- 7 % of Black/African Americans third-graders score a 4 on the SBAC Math.
- 8.6 of Hispanic third-graders score a 4 on the SBAC Math.
- 22.3% of White/Caucasian third-graders score a 4 on the SBAC Math.
- 30.3% of Asian third-graders score a 4 on the SBAC Math.

So, people and communities of color do or do not include Asian Americans? How can the standardized testing system be used to oppress and marginalize people and communities of color when some people and communities of color are doing the best? It's inverse oppression? It makes no sense.

Anonymous said...

Ethnic studies isn't being created as what is generally understood to be Ethnic Studies in the wider world. So looking up anything doesn't tell you what is happening. What is being created is very particular to a small group of educators who have a particular philosophy and who have taken over the term for their own use.

Whenever you read an Ethnic Studies document from SPS you'll not it has the phrase "as defined by" and "SPS/Ethnic Studies". The group making it has redefined all terms into a heavily reactionary orthodoxy that knows neither nuance nor critical discussion. It is presented to staff as a semi-religious received truth from on high and the only allowable questions are how you can get 100% on board with the presenters point of view. Asking questions can get you reported for micro-aggression. So if you have any qualms about your boss or boss' designee calling all the teachers and staff racists during a paid staff meeting then you should probably stay silent and wait. Frankly, that is the culture of SPS from the top down to the bottom. Say yes in meetings and do what you like and don't embarrass anyone in public because the people who are supposed to hold you accountable are breaking the rules they are supposed to follow. It's generally lawless unless its about money.

Mr. Theo Moriarty

Outsider said...

The idea that science in the US has been the purview of white people is a red herring. Asians make up about 6% of the population but receive about 13% of STEM bachelors degrees and 12% of STEM PhDs as of 2016. White people don't prevent anyone from studying science.

It's obvious that ethnic studies advocates were educated as critical theory - grievance studies type majors. In those fields, it's true that each race has its own truth, and which answer is considered "right" depends on power, not reality. But if you pursue science and technology that way, odd things happen.

Anonymous said...

I liked much of what our ES specialist said in her blog post about ethnic studies in math. Math and science does have a white male problem - and as a scientist who is not a white male, it can be uncomfortable when I represent the lone minority in the room. It takes real mental gymnastics to remain convinced that I belong in that room.

I like many of the ideas stated in that blog post. I wish, because I do not agree 100% with everything stated, that I were not afraid to state my opinions about what I agree with and disagree with. I wish Tracy good luck in her endeavors and knows she has some powerful allies with her. Unfortunately she has also lost many potentially powerful allies because, at least for me, I am afraid of her and afraid to speak out publicly in a forum in which she is present.

-NW

Anonymous said...

I see what you mean @salut. What is being proposed isn't a curriculum as such but a fundamentally new system of education. I don't think this is widely understood in the community. And I don't think there is evidence that this will necessarily improve academic outcomes among groups that aren't currently doing so well (the data showed ethnic studies targeted to specific ethnic groups did, but I could be missing new data) although it might make people feel better.
"It includes how the school is structured, who learns with who and who progresses and how". So in the past (and to the present day, many would argue) these things were determined by a white patriarchy, which is undeniably wrong.
But who should be making those determinations nowadays? I'm not sure I trust the likes of TCG with her inflammatory rhetoric and militant SJW agenda, virtually singlehandedly deciding how the Seattle Public schools are structured, who learns with who, and who progresses and how. And I think a lot of families would be particularly wary of the "who progresses and how" aspect given the outright animosity toward advanced learning and HCC, and the struggles of SpED families to access appropriate support.
Not saying these sort of questions shouldn't be examined or that changes aren't in order, but it seems this sort of overhaul is something that should be done with clear and realistically achievable goals and broad community input, understanding, and buy in, at the very least in the form of board members reviewing and approving the proposals (on behalf of their constituents).

Just the facts

UPdate said...

Director Mack via Friday update (9/27) asked about Creative Approach schools. The district responded that schools have voted in favor of Creative Approach Schools. However, TAF would create a Creative Approach School with a private entity--this has not happened before.

"Whenever you read an Ethnic Studies document from SPS you'll not it has the phrase "as defined by" and "SPS/Ethnic Studies". The group making it has redefined all terms into a heavily reactionary orthodoxy that knows neither nuance nor critical discussion." I agree.

Anonymous said...

The key to getting more minority students into STEM fields is to teach them to be good at math and science early on. Eliminate the gaps while they are young, demonstrating to them that they are just as capable as their white (and Asian) peers. Teacher training on how to not be biased would probably help, too. But I don't think it's the current math curriculum that is creating the disparities.

Or, here's an idea. Since "Western" style math is so bad, why not teach Western style math to whites (and Asians) and then Eastern style math to minority groups the district cares about? The Eastern style math, with all its practice, practice, practice and its avoidance of "discovery" approaches, will probably help minority students catch up before we know it.

E-W math

Anonymous said...

And girls historically of all races are ALSO underrepresented in disciplines involving more in-depth study in math. However one answer would be having more mentors of color and females in these fields, as well as encouragement. Things are changing and we are seeing more females going into science fields, although engineering is still underrepresented. There are also tons of white kids completely failing at math in the US. The US and WA state does not produce as many kids who go into these fields as other countries. Asian kids tend to do much better, so the "western" and "white" argument holds no sway for me. In addition, she cannot impose this math framework" on all kids to include the (white) ones she continually disparages for simply being present and taking classes in SPS.

A Parent

Anonymous said...

Video's without transcripts would be a clear violations of the ADA... Assuming we have a population of parents/students/community members who are deaf or hard of hearing.


Of course here is another fine example of Juneau's leadership backward even behind Nyland!

Whistle blown

Anonymous said...

Just as a random taxpayer, it really lowers to standing of SPS to have this ethnic studies situation being so unprofessionally and immaturely handled. It should be a no brainer to put a stop to it. Where are the professionals in JSCEE? Where is Juneau? It surely rocks confidence in her as a leader and in the Board for tolerating it.

Random Taxpayer

science mom said...

I think we just need to go back to a base six system and then invent, i mean, liberate math from there.

Anonymous said...

"Countering Whiteness" by TCG on Medium

just googling

Anonymous said...

TCG is clearly a legend in her own mind - she believes there is more support for her work than there really is, having created a climate where people are afraid to express a different opinion to her 'correct' one, that silence is taken as agreement and approval.

Its the zealotry that gets me

ZZ

Anonymous said...

I agree with you ZZ. I want this framework in our schools, but not created by this person based on what I've read by her and about her, and what she has said about people I respect. What she has sent out into the world sounds undefined and unrefined, and I have no confidence it will be successful in achieving what she hopes it will achieve (which is?). I do not want her to be able to experiment on our kids - I've had enough of that with other curriculum and other half-baked initiatives by Seattle Public Schools. Low quality here, in my opinion. We deserve better.

Stephen

Anonymous said...

It looks like the hiring of Juneau is turning out to be a disaster.
To refresh everyone’s memory, many people in the community were so excited about her being hired as Superintendent, because she filled three boxes on the identity scorecard:
Female
LGBTQ
Native American

It’s too bad “competence” wasn’t one of the hiring criteria.

MP

Anonymous said...

“There's nothing more dangerous than someone who wants to make the world a better place.”

Banksy

Anonymous said...

Just another example of why competence is more important that any racial quota. As a POC, my actions and capabilities are what defines who I am, not the color of my skin.

Competency rules

Anonymous said...

Wow, that TG article on Medium (https://medium.com/@heinemann/countering-whiteness-33b75113fecb) is something else.

"I struggled to understand why white people denied having a race, ethnicity, or culture until I shifted my reading from race and racism to whiteness and the creation of whiteness. Through laws, policy, and practices, white people have been taught to exchange their ethnic and cultural identities for the benefit of “whiteness.”

"...forgo identification as an ethnic group and instead selected whiteness. Ta-Nehisi Coates refers to this phenomenon as 'the people who believe they are white.'”

Ah, so let me get this straight: it sounds like my options are to (a) choose to "believe I'm white" and "exchange my ethnic and cultural identities for the benefit of 'whiteness'," or (b) fight my whiteness, which I guess would mean trying to reclaim "my" ethnic and cultural identities by maybe submitting to genetic testing to perhaps figure out what my mixed white heritage really consists of, so I can then do some research and engage in some cultural appropriation of all my component parts, except probably the Native American part, because we saw how well that went for E Warren, right?

"Using whiteness instead of racism reminds white people they have an ethnicity too, and they’ve lost a piece of their humanity by perpetuating whiteness.... White people need to find their medicine and restore their own humanity so they can stop hurting others."

WOW. White people are inhuman. Or at least not fully human. This is what the head of SPS Ethnic Studies believes?

"Never in history has any non-white group had the systemic power to oppress whites or any other group of people."

Well, that's just flat out wrong. Apparently our Ethnic Studies lead doesn't know her history or current events.

TCG is absolutely not someone fit to create a curriculum for children. Do SPS and the Board seriously support this person, who says white people have lost part of their humanity simply because they were born white? According to TCG "white people can’t turn their backs on whiteness," and she "define[s] whiteness as 'the cultural values, norms, behaviors, and attitudes that uphold White Supremacy'"...so I guess white people are all white supremacists in her eyes? As are people of color who "engage in whiteness"?

This is insane. Board members, please intervene ASAP. This should not be acceptable behavior by an SPS employee--especially not one tasked to lead the ethnic studies implementation. The only employee over whom you have direct oversight may be the Superintendent, but you have other avenues. Isn't it the Board that decided SPS should proceed with implementing an Ethnic Studies requirement? Maybe you should take a play from Juneau's or Tolley's book and hit the "pause" button on that for a while. Pass a follow-up resolution that says that the development of an ethnic studies curriculum needs to be delayed until the district has sufficient funding and expertise to do the job well.

not ok

Anonymous said...

I don’t have a problem with the blog post. Those are interesting facts that could be mentioned to inspire math study. Equally as important, though, is carrying on with effective math curriculum. If we want POCs and other underrepresented populations in STEM, we have to support them and provide the rigorous training they need to get into those fields.

Both And

Anonymous said...

"Talk about hypocritical. Melissa got kicked off a site because she copied people's comments from that site to this site. TCG just did the same thing."

This site is open to comments without being part of a Facebook group--which requires personal information.

Different

Unknown said...

Hi Melissa and SMH,

When TCG came to present at my school, she even alienated our militant SJW's. Sometimes, I think SPS hired her because they want it run poorly.

SP

Melissa Westbrook said...

Well, quite a discussion. I was out and about so I was unable to weigh in until now.

I want to particularly single out Just the Facts and Salut for taking the time to expand on their thoughts. They both have pointed out that if we want a better school system - not just a well-run system - it will take fundamental change. And it will be unlike our experiences and it will be uncomfortable, even painful.

Both of them spoke of a “fundamentally new education system” and “a total school experience.” The latter I think speaks to bringing in the culture and backgrounds of ALL the children being taught.

But I do agree that how this is carried out is as important as the change that needs to happen.

And when I heard not one but two people who seem to work/know TCG and are “afraid of her” and “afraid to speak up,” then something is wrong.

Because the leader of Ethnic Studies has to be able to speak to ALL parents - not give edicts - about what that change will look like. It’s odd that the Superintendent and Board have not weighed in on the vision.

To the person who spoke of “war” - go away. This idea that some group has to be beaten down or shamed should have no place in the conversation. Why? Because when you back ANYONE into a corner, they will stop listening/fight back. And neither thing is what should be happening.

It was suggested to me that perhaps the Superintendent likes that TCG acts as she does towards me because it suits the Superintendent’s needs. Maybe.

But I still find it odd that, time after time, TCG seems to be marginalized and her cries for staff ignored. The most recent signal was when she put on a summer institute for ES which, according to TCG, was widely praised. So the district does a write-up about it and forgets to include her name. For weeks and weeks. Finally, it’s added as a notation at the bottom.

Different, I’m not sure if you are talking about the SPS Community Resource Facebook page but they kicked me off and no, you can’t make comments without being in the group.

Heads- UP said...

Attention HCC Families,

The Curriculum and Instruction Committee will be holding an important meeting on October 8th at 4pm (not 4:30pm). The meeting will take place at the John Stanford Center- in Board Office. Meetings are open to members of the public.

At 4pm, the district will address policies that will impact the future of HCC programs.


Annual Approval of Programs or Schools Using the Alternative Learning Experience (ALE) Model and Review of Policy No. 2255, Alternative Learning Experience Schools or Programs (Perkins)

https://www.seattleschools.org/UserFiles/Servers/Server_543/File/District/Departments/School%20Board/committees/C&I/2019-20/191008%20C&I%20Agenda_Re

We deserve transparency Very important for families to attend this meeting.

Options said...

HCC families have options. Shoreline's Highly Capable program accepts students from outside of their district.

https://www.shorelineschools.org/Page/108

Take your child (and state funding) to Shoreline if the district won't provide the services your child needs.

Anonymous said...

i think SPS is using this ethnic study to cover the disparity of outcomes rather than dig deeper into the resources and policies to improve outcomes It’s also being used as a vehicle for people to get jobs. I actually like the concept of courageous conversation. I think students need to model and learn how to discuss tough subjects with knowledge and respect. It’s a useful life skill.

That’s not what’s happening here with SPS Ethnic Study. It’s a heavy handed approach that divides and incites. It’s too bad because Ms. Castro-Gill is getting in the way of a program that could be useful. The glaring reason is Ms. Castro-Gill is no Ta-Nehisi Coates and lacks his nuance and more textured approach. He also knows how to speak with his audience and has taken the time to research and understand his subject matter. Mr. Coates also has a lovely sense of humor. Here’s an excerpt of his writing in the Atlantic.

https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2013/07/there-are-no-fat-people-in-paris/278162/

Unfortunately, SPS finds itself in a sticky position with the ever angry Ms. Castro-Gill. It can’t shed her as she is relentless in finding people to fight with and then blogs about it. To safeguard her job, she purses close ties with SEA, though people are getting tired of the continuous drama and fighting. More importantly, a day of reckoning will come when Ethnic Study as designed by Ms. Castro-Gill will cause more headaches and without the lackluster results.

Then SPS will move onto another visionary drummer with the magical fix.

A Reader



Promises Promises said...

For years, the district has failed to continuously fund IB.

Juneau is so very proud of the Strategic Plan. The Strategic Plan focuses on those furthest from "Educational Justice". The IB program is a corner stone of the district's plan to dismantle HCC. However, Rainier Beach is asking for PTA funds to maintain their IB picture.


https://www.crowdrise.com/o/en/campaign/fight-educational-injustice-ibrb?fbclid=IwAR3ZySTF6We4rIuCGvTIivxnKqFI6ffLbKe-NPbD2o9UA5urzD8FiCScSVo

It is all words. Can there be a guarantee that the district will fund IB after HCC crumbles? I don't think so.

Anonymous said...

@ Promises promises, yes it’s all just words. They want everyone to learn the same thing and bring down the ceiling, to say they closed the achievement gap. Fake equity that doesn’t actually help the kids who need it. I wish they spend half as much energy and resources into researching how to help underserved populations instead of how to dismantle advanced learning.

Lip service

Anonymous said...

Interesting study on early brain development and academic achievement:
http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20191001-the-word-gap-that-affects-how-your-babys-brain-grows

NW Parent

Anonymous said...

“Anonymous Options said...
HCC families have options. Shoreline's Highly Capable program accepts students from outside of their district.”

Not exactly, for now only grades 7-12. Out of district enrollment is closed to elementary age

NW Parent

Jet City mom said...

I would like to encourage young people and their allies to attend the Community Celebration at the Gates Foundation today ( Saturday the 5th)

https://www.discovergates.org/program/we-the-future-community-celebration/

Anonymous said...

@Not O.K

As a person who considers themselves white, but also identifies with an ethnic group, I don't see a problem with some of what was quoted. I find whiteness studies interesting. I actually found it quite strange when I moved to an area where much of the white population don't identify at all with any ethnic heritage. But I guess this is alot of the US. However where I grew up in NY, everyone identified with some ethnic group. Many Hispanic people I knew identified as white. People from my own Mediterranean ethnic group (some of whom are very dark skinned whites), did not understand why others would view them as non-white. We also understood that our relatives and ancestors had a hard time assimilating in the US. It's important to understand that many ethnic and religious minorities were once not considered full white. They were not black, but someplace in-between. This is just part of our history. It helps us better understand power dynamics between communities in the US. Regarding genetic testing and/or doing family research it benefits people to learn their own heritage is more complex than they understand. This should help create more empathy from "whites" for what POC and minorities experience in the US.

KL

Options said...

Sorry to hear that, NW Parent.

The district is willing to invest an enormous amount of time and resources to destroy a system that can't guarantee any type of a cohort.

I wish they would invest taxpayer dollars to help kids with dyslexia.

Anonymous said...

@KL, I’m not sure I agree: “Regarding genetic testing and/or doing family research it benefits people to learn their own heritage is more complex than they understand. This should help create more empathy from "whites" for what POC and minorities experience in the US. “

First, many whites already understand that their own heritage is complex—you don’t need genetic testing or genealogical research to know that.

Second, I’m not sure how having approximate percentages attached to each specific category of white helps to create more empathy for POC than one might already have.

Third, and getting more to the heart of my issue with TCG’s writing, how would that knowledge even help a “white” person “counter” their whiteness? Should I “reclaim” my heritage and start identifying with an ethnic group that’s part of my lineage, even if my parents did not identify with ethnic groups, nor their parents before them? And is the answer really for people to try to create more distinctions and highlight our differences? I guess you’re “lucky” in that you have an ethnic group you can legitimately embrace to demonstrate rejection of whiteness if you do choose, but many others are not in the same boat. I guess some of are just inescapably white and will be lumped into her pro white supremacy category, like it or not.

Not ok

Jet City mom said...

Are they at least saying “ dyslexia” out loud?

Our daughter had an IEP for “ specific learning disability”, but as her plan didn’t address her dyslexia, and as her daily pullout time consisted of her sitting off to the side while the teacher worked with the wiggly boys, ( that is when someone remembered to send her to resource, as she couldn’t tell time), we had to put weekly outside tutoring on a charge card so she at least was getting some help, that was accountable.

Even teachers told me to sue, but it was all I could do to get through the day.
It was demoralizing when the things we had added to her IEP were whited out when I was given a copy.

I think every employee at the Stanford Center should spend two hours in the schools weekly.
They need to see that their work and policies affect real people.
Other organizations encourage community involvement, Boeing, Dick’s, Microsoft et al.
It might get them some good press.

Anonymous said...

@Not O.k

It seems to me that some people identifying as white, may not relate to the fact they also come from various ethnic heritages. Some of their ancestors may not have been white as defined today or in the past. In addition I do think it can be helpful to some to learn how we share so much together as a human race, and how people have been moving around for centuries. Family research as well as DNA can demonstrate we are really much more connected that we understand.

I don't think you need to "reclaim" your heritage. My DNA and family research identifies ancestors (I did not know) who would be considered a different race than white in the US, but I don't exactly identify with that ethnicity. However it also makes me understand so much of identity can also be superficial, as we share so much together in reality. People have been moving around for centuries, borders have changed, who has been considered white has changed etc.

"And is the answer really for people to try to create more distinctions and highlight our differences?"

No, the point I was trying to make is that ancestry often reveals we have much more in common with each other than we think.

Also, unless all your ancestors on each and every line are descended from "wealthy" educated English Protestant Anglo-Saxons from the past 400 years born in the US, you probably also have some recent immigrant ancestors. They may have also experienced varying levels of discrimination by those holding power in the US.

KL

Anonymous said...

"Ethnic Studies curriculum” seems to be a misnomer, if as others have pointed out, it is not a single subject with a curriculum as such like bio or history, or like Jesse Hagopian’s much-lauded ethnic studies class at Garfield, or even a component of social studies curriculum.

What it actually seems to be is an attempt to develop an anti-rascist pedagogy to be incorporated in every classroom (this is what I understand from TCGs writings and philosophy). This is not about teaching "ethnic studies” per se, it is about teaching anti-racism.

From my reading, anti-racist pedagogy generally aims to foster learning without reinforcement of existing systems of power and domination. This involves addressing the absence of race and inequality in course curricula, using anti-racist teaching practices in the classroom, and challenging racism in wider communities. Teaching practice is said to be anti-racist if it forces students, especially those in the majority, out of their comfort zones and forces them to employ critical thinking skills, including in understanding their own social positions, entitlements and power. It calls for the experiences and contributions of ALL students in the class to be respected and valued.
One thing I saw, was that you do not have to teach material directly related to race or racism in order to employ anti-racist pedagogy (although it seems from the ES math framework that there in the intention for this to be done). Similarly, explicitly teaching explicitly about people of color or racism does not automatically mean it engages an anti-racist approach to teaching. It is more about the ‘process of learning’, about how students and teachers understand and operate within the classroom.

There is a lot of literature out there about anti-racist education for those that want to delve deeper. Yesterday I went down the rabbit hole of reading about Ethnic Studies, and looking for research about the outcomes of having this in schools, and now I realize I might have been reading about the wrong thing and perhaps I should actually be reading about ‘anti-racist’ education.

Can anyone tell me - Are the terms interchangeable? Or has their been a change in scope from rolling out Ethnic Studies as a standalone class or as component of social studies to embedding it in every subject (in which case it seems to that anti-racist teaching would better describe the plan).

Anyone who understands this better than me, feel free to correct me if I’m wrong about any of this.

Just the facts

Anonymous said...

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/15/us/california-ethnic-studies.html

This article (about curriculum in CA) as one opinion, states that defining Ethnic Studies only about people of color is a mistake. Some ethnic studies courses address power and marginalization of various groups such as gender, religion etc. I assume curriculum would also likely vary depending upon where in the US it is taught. As one example, NY classrooms may include groups such as Catholics, Jews, Italian-Americans.

Has anyone given much thought that our presidents have overwhelmingly been only educated protestant Anglo-Saxon males? "As only the second Catholic to run for presidential office in a majority Protestant nation, John F. Kennedy was confronted with the issue of his religion throughout his campaign." https://www.history.com/topics/us-presidents/john-f-kennedy-on-catholicism-video

KL

Melissa Westbrook said...

Just the Facts, I do think ethnic studies is different from anti-racism education (but they may overlap in places).

I know that Chandra Hampson has said she and Director Geary have been working on an anti-racist policy. I did query Director Geary about helping with this effort and noting that I believe it important for many voices to be part of the work. Geary agreed and said that there will be community outreach. So look for that.

I think it’s going to take a lot of educating so people know what is being discussed and what the goal is BEFORE you can start the work of what change looks like.

Options said...

Jet City Mom,

I have not heard a single board director or administrator say the word "dyslexia". I have not seen the word "dyslexia" in the Strategic Plan.

IMO, we're seeing another Pie in the Sky initiative. Costs have not been revealed. The district is now dipping into reserves to run the district. Dismantling HCC will require continued funding for professional development and teacher supports. We don't have these types of supports, now, I don't see that the district will fund these services in any meaningful way in the future.

I've not seen a pilot WSS funding proposal.

The two most vocal individuals pushing to dismantle HC are Geary and Juneau. Geary will be gone. I don't see Juneau sticking around to clean-up the mess ..in years to come, either.

Anonymous said...

Options and Jet City Mom:
Like it or not, dyslexia falls under Specific Learning Disabilities category of qualification under IDEA and Washington Law. You will most likely almost never see it mentioned in an IEP for now because it is a medical diagnosis unless that person has been diagnosed with dyslexia. Usually you will see SLD in reading. Schools cannot diagnose dyslexia (just as they cannot diagnose autism or ADHD). There are changes in Washington for screening beginning in 21-22 school year (glacial pace and long-overdue IMHO and way too much focus on screening and not enough on actual effective interventions so far). Schools will then be expected to use MTSS to address suspected dyslexia (ha!). This is an improvement that it will hopefully capture and offer some support sooner. Kids often get referred for OT services (letter writing) in K or 1st grade when the issue is often dyslexia and OT is the only service the student can access. IMHO school psychs have been way too slow to respond to early learning teacher concerns and say they have to wait until 2nd or 3rd grade to see enough concerns in reading to qualify for IEP SDI under SLD.

You can learn more about what OSPI is rolling out here: https://www.k12.wa.us/about-ospi/workgroups-committees/currently-meeting-workgroups/washington-state-dyslexia-advisory-council/about-dyslexia

NW Parent

Anonymous said...

@ KL, maybe go back and reread my initial comments on TCG's article, but reading from the perspective of a white person who comes from a long line of other different shades of white people, and who is quite aware that many of their ancestors likely faced hardships and some discrimination. Someone who also is quite aware that we're all more alike than we are different, and who doesn't need DNA results or genealogy research to understand that basic human fact. Someone who also can't doesn't have an ethnicity to latch onto, as many generations back have been pretty un-ethnically white. Someone maybe wishes they DID have more of a connection with a particular ethnic or cultural group, but who can't really claim it because it would be called appropriation. In this context, TCG essentially sees you as giving up your ethnic heritage for the benefits of whiteness, thus supporting white supremacy, yet you don't have an ethnic heritage to give up, and can't reclaim one from the past. It's a damned if you do, damned if you don't situation, and it feels like she is not willing to understand why that sort of rhetoric doesn't sit well with some people. Broad claims like that hurt progress in building commonality, and all the DNA tests in the world won't change that.

not ok

Jet City mom said...

I was reading the RCW, and did not notice that dyslexia was a medical diagnosis in a Washington or other states.
Perhaps you could share your source?


RCW 28A.300.530
Individuals with dyslexia—Identification and instruction—Handbook—Reports.
(1) Within available resources, the office of the superintendent of public instruction, in consultation with the school districts that participated in the Lorraine Wojahn dyslexia pilot program, and with an international nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting efforts to provide appropriate identification of and instruction for individuals with dyslexia, shall:
(a) Develop an educator training program to enhance the reading, writing, and spelling skills of students with dyslexia. The training program must provide research-based, multisensory literacy intervention professional development in the areas of dyslexia and intervention implementation. The program shall be posted on the web site of the office of the superintendent of public instruction. The training program may be regionally delivered through the educational service districts. The educational service districts may seek assistance from the international nonprofit organization to deliver the training; and
(b) Develop a dyslexia handbook to be used as a reference for teachers and parents of students with dyslexia. The handbook shall be modeled after other state dyslexia handbooks, and shall include guidelines for school districts to follow as they identify and provide services for students with dyslexia. Additionally, the handbook shall provide school districts, and parents and guardians with information regarding the state's relevant statutes and their relation to federal special education laws. The handbook shall be posted on the web site of the office of the superintendent of public instruction.
(2) Beginning September 1, 2009, and annually thereafter, each educational service district shall report to the office of the superintendent of public instruction the number of individuals who participate in the training developed and offered by the educational service district. The office of the superintendent of public instruction shall report that information to the legislative education committees.

https://www.k12.wa.us/about-ospi/workgroups-committees/currently-meeting-workgroups/washington-state-dyslexia-advisory-council/about-dyslexia

Anonymous said...

@Not O.k I don't necessarily think you are guilty of "cultural appropriation" in being cognizant of where your ancestors originated. For example, instead of identifying as white, why not recognize I am mostly mixed N European-American etc. Hypothetically for example, stating I had ancestors were from France, England etc.

Also, with each generation in the US kids being born are descended from multiple heritages and cultures. I am wondering how TCG identifies as I hear her mother is "white". White would then be replaced with ethnic identification such as mixed Northern European-American.

I had commented that it seemed odd to me that in places like Seattle, there are "white" people who seem to have no knowledge of their own ancestry. White is not a country. In the west where some people identify as "white" and don't identify with an ethnicity, my own ethnicity becomes invisible. In reality our heritage and relatives are diverse. A friend from NY who is the same ethnicity as me but was much darker skinned, felt discriminated against at times in Seattle, because being dark skinned they realized they were not viewed as "white". They were often mistaken as Latino or Middle Eastern in Seattle. I found this strange and started to recognize that in places like Seattle being "white" meant you look Northern European. In NY many people who identify as "white", along with their ethnicity, are much darker skinned. My parents also made a comment about not "fitting in" or feeling "as American" as the people in Seattle. I found that truly interesting as their parents were born elsewhere, but they were born in the US.

KL

Anonymous said...

@ KL, identify to whom??? "For example, instead of identifying as white, why not recognize I am mostly mixed N European-American etc. Hypothetically for example, stating I had ancestors were from France, England etc." The only times I ever really "identify" as white are on forms where I have to check a box. The rest of the time I'm a complex person on the inside--but simple white (and thus, you know...) to casual outside observers like our ES head.

"I had commented that it seemed odd to me that in places like Seattle, there are "white" people who seem to have no knowledge of their own ancestry. White is not a country."

Really? You feel that Seattle whites are less knowledgeable about their ancestry than whites elsewhere? Why, because they look more white, or we don't have an Italian-American part of town? I'm pretty sure that Seattle whites are well aware that white isn't a country. That's a whole lot of ignorance you're ascribing to a large group of people. This is the problem with conversations like this.

I understand your comment about skin color and whiteness in Seattle, but I really don't think the ethnicity piece is the solution. For one, I don't think you're going to get a bunch of light-skinned whites to start announcing they identify as "Northern European whites" because, frankly, it sounds racist. It sounds like you'd be trying to distance yourself from other whites who may have darker skin. Two, ethnicity and skin tone don't always match, as you pointed out in your example. If people are judging based on skin tone--which many probably are, I agree--then it's not so much ethnicity that's the issue. Third, I don't know that there really IS a solution to the issue you mentioned, that "In the west where some people identify as 'white' and don't identify with an ethnicity, [your] own ethnicity becomes invisible." Many white people don't really have an ethnic identity with which to identify even if they tried. For example, what would it even mean to an outside observer for someone to identify with their 23 and Me "Broadly Northwestern European" with known but not detected Native American ancestry?

Maybe we just need to lobby to change the federal categories such that, unless you can prove that ALL your ancestors, back however many generations, were 100% what we now categorize as white (per fed guidelines, "having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa), then you instead check the box for a new category, "off-white."

Don't know what else to say, other than it's all complicated, and that identifying as "white" should not always be seen by others as attempt to claim some "benefit" or distance oneself from others who might be, or appear, as less white. Often we don't have much to fall back on. Sometimes I feel like one of those generic brand cans from when I was young. I got the generic "White" label instead of a more interesting name brand with a cool logo.

not ok

Melissa Westbrook said...

So TCG and Chandra Hampson castigate me for claiming my one-quarter Mexican heritage. “Oh Melissa, you only use that when it suits you but you identify white.” As I have said in the past, family is complex. I don’t feel the need to explain it.

( TCG is half-Mexican and doesn’t speak Spanish but she claims Latinx. That’s fine but don’t try to tell other people what they should consider themselves.)

I always consider myself an American mongrel (for lack of a better word) and that makes me a real American. My kin come from several places and I am proud of each but I can’t identify with just one. Most of them are Western Europe. (My husband was Italian and so when you have that definite bloodline, you can say that).

BUT, because my childhood was spent in a rural border town, overwhelming populated by Mexican-Americans, I DO consider my Mexican heritage. TCG asked if I ever interacted with the Mexican community. The town WAS that community. It was reflected in everything in the town. So yes, I do understand Mexican culture.

I consider some of the talking about whiteness somewhat more about behaviors and cultural norms,than actual heritage.

Not Ok, I like that “off-white” tag. It is an interesting thing -if you go to the paint store, I would guess that “white” has many more shades than almost any other color.

Anonymous said...

" Sometimes I feel like one of those generic brand cans from when I was young. I got the generic "White" label instead of a more interesting name brand with a cool logo."

I would prefer the ability to check multiple boxes for all people, and also keeping a write in category as how people self-identify that might not fit neatly into a box. Of course this makes data really messy, but it would be more truthful IMO. I think data collection will often find people checking multiple boxes.

"Black" is also problematic, as is the term African American. Some of my friends might identify with being Caribbean-American or Jamaican American, or partially Puerto Rican or Native American.

Lately our politics is also pushing for the lumping all people who speak Spanish into a "Latino" category. People come from diverse heritages. Puerto Rican or Cuban is different than being Mexican-American. We do the same with lumping people into the Asian category.

I also like that off-white comment. I am wondering how some of my dark skinned (but also white identifying) relatives feel these days with the use of the term "brown people". I have some pretty dark skinned relatives who are mistaken outside of their ethnic enclave for various people currently considered "brown" in the US. This is interesting and I guess would be studied in "whiteness studies".

KL

Anonymous said...

@Not O.K Also, I see nothing racist about people identifying ethnically as "Northern European" or Nordic or whatever. By allowing people to self identify we expose formerly "rigid" categories, that assume all groups are a monolith. It acknowledges our ancestors in the US come from all over our interconnected world. In addition, as we discussed when people can do a little reading about history of various regions. Or do a ancestry work or DNA digging, they may find out their monolithic ideas about heritage are actually more complex.

KL

Anonymous said...

@KL, re: your last post, it’s tricky. It might seem less racist for a brown-haired, green-eyed person to claim to be of NW European descent than it might feel for a blond with blue eyes, don’t you think? I’m certainly not going to go around claiming my predominantly NW European origins, especially to my Jewish friend and family. I also can’t claim other small parts of my heritage because those groups would think it uncool since I don’t look/act the part. As a “white” person, it’s only “ok” for me to claim subgroups that fall within the white category. We’ve created all these “rules” that box people in, which makes comments like TCG’s so hard to stomach. I guess I’m just stuck with having lost part of my “humanity.”

By the way, thanks for your civil engagement on this complex issues. I appreciate the chance to talk honestly. We need more of this.

Not ok

Anonymous said...

Having lived in other countries on different continents, it always surprises me how much Americans want to identify with some distant ancestral connection. And when Americans visit these places the puzzled response of locals is pretty similar whether it's Ireland or Mozambique. To locals, these people are all Americans, they are more like each other than they are like the locals. Typically they speak broad American English, not the local language, they carry themselves and use gestures and vocal volumes that are American. They dress American and have cultural expectations like personal space, timeliness, ice in their drinks & personal transportation. They are ethnically American.

There is more tolerance for claims by Americans who are 2nd generation but even then it is grudging if they present American norms.

Is this because Americans don't leave the country often so they think they are more like other ethnicities than they are like each other?

-real question

Melissa Westbrook said...

Real Question, good insights...

Watching said...

Hi Melissa,

I just wanted to acknowledge that certain community members (and perhaps individuals within the district) have been trying to discredit you.

You've been around for 20 years. Nothing can diminish your knowledge and experience. I'm glad to see that Danny Westneat decided to stop-by. I'm sure certain elected state representatives with stop -by to visit your blog, as well.

Thanks for staying so strong.

Anonymous said...

@ Watching,
The only thing that discredits Melissa Westbrook and diminishes her knowledge and experience is... Melissa Westbrook. To truly care about others is taking yourself out of the center and serve selflessly. It's not about you, me, any of your followers or people that do not agree with you, MW. It's about students. Black, brown, white, pink... ELL, APP, HCC, DLI, SPED, 2E, or any other labels we place on them. The day you understand this you will feel at


PEACE

Anonymous said...

@ Peace "I think is tragic how to women decide to tear each other apart. For what? If you both really care about education and students, I do not understand the amount of time and effort you spend throwing stuff at each other."

Peace, I don't know if you are a woman or a man but it looks like you are the one trying to tear people apart. Why not let it go and practice what you preach?
Goodbye

Anonymous said...

@real question "There is more tolerance for claims by Americans who are 2nd generation but even then it is grudging if they present American norms.Is this because Americans don't leave the country often so they think they are more like other ethnicities than they are like each other?"

You may have traveled to other countries but have you lived all over the United States within various communities for any period of time? The US is a large and diverse country. Some communities may retain stronger cultural identities after a generation or two because they were so heavily discriminated against in the past. If someone is raised eating the food, and celebrating the traditions of their grandparents, they have every right to retain a connection to their cultural heritage.

In addition, who are you to judge? Even if someone wants to wear African cultural garments and has ancestors way way back from Africa, I have no criticism whatsover. Of course they all know they are "American". Of course we have commonalities we all share as Americans. But we also have differences which is what we are discussing.

All countries in the world have people who identify within their borders with various linguistic, cultural or religious heritages.

It is a fallacy we are a big melting pot in the US. An ethnic identity different than the dominant culture for many do not go away in one or even two generations. In reality, many people retain cultural values and other things from their various ethnic heritages that may be quite different from a more "dominant cultural group".

KL

Melissa Westbrook said...

Peace, that’s your opinion. I would not have done this work - and yes, it’s work - all these years, for free, if I didn’t care about students. You seem to be wanting to needle/chide me endlessly. I got your message. Enough.

Budget Meeting said...

The budget documents are meaningless.

6:30 Call to order

6:30 Work Session

8pm Adjourn

https://www.seattleschools.org/UserFiles/Servers/Server_543/File/District/Departments/School%20Board/19-20%20agendas/20191004_Agenda_Posted20191004.pdf

Melissa Westbrook said...

Budget Meeting, either it wasn’t attached at the time you looked or you didn’t scrolled down but here’s a link with everything.

https://www.seattleschools.org/UserFiles/Servers/Server_543/File/District/Departments/School%20Board/19-20%20agendas/20191004_Agenda_Posted20191004.pdf

The number of low-income students continues to drop. Lots of interesting stuff in there.

Anonymous said...

Jet City Mom here is a table that lays out the difference between identifying learning difficulties in schools vs. “diagnosis”. Since the “legal term” in school is SLD you’re unlikely to hear a school psych utter dyslexia. With the push by OSPI hopefully this will change. Long overdue IMHO as most school services I see are ineffective and I have always said that if my child had dyslexia I would get them in a private setting and if need be push to have the public school pay for it. I have known families who have done this and only then was their child able to make gains in reading. Unfortunately most sped teachers are not specifically trained in dyslexia.

https://www.understood.org/en/school-learning/special-services/special-education-basics/the-difference-between-a-school-identification-and-a-clinical-diagnosis

NW Parent.

Anonymous said...

@real question I would also add that if you speak to many second or even third generation people in the US, they likely understand they are also culturally different than their parents or grandparents. Cultures and countries are also not static and change through time, the place their grandparents left may be a different place today. Some may feel they do not completely fit with either culture. If you are from the dominant American protestant Anglo Saxon culture and have no connection to relatives from elsewhere, likely your own culture is invisible to you.

KL

Anonymous said...

The Seattle Times asks, Is Math Racist?

https://www.seattletimes.com/education-lab/new-course-outlines-prompt-conversations-about-identity-race-in-seattle-classrooms-even-in-math/

HP

Anonymous said...

Thank you KL for your interesting thoughts, It is nice to have American perspective on my questions.

I understand there are many different groups within every country with different traditions. I can see that with a geographic space as large as USA it would be more. It certainly makes sense to me that people would have family traditions they may not share with their neighbors or that are region specific.

I think that Anglo Saxon protestants from US do know their culture when they visit England, the only Anglo Saxon protestant country. They know they are more American than English when they try driving on the left side of the road, watching a cricket match,or read a recipe with the ingredients in metric weights & temperatures in Cel, and eating pizza with a knife & fork. Also the American form of Christian religion, evangelicalism, is very American not English. It evolved from the Great Awakening period in American History.

If Americans do not know their own culture it seems that it may be because they have never experienced any other culture, so they assume that every other culture is the same as theirs is. But try coming to a job interview an hour late in the USA and see how uniformly American cultural norms are applied. Perhaps American culture should be something that is explained in school too. Is anthropology ever part of social science curriculum in US?

- real questions

Anonymous said...

@real questions "It certainly makes sense to me that people would have family traditions they may not share with their neighbors or that are region specific."

It goes much deeper in the US, as someone's heritage and relatives also shape family values and other aspects of culture.

For example there are some well known values sometimes understood broadly as American, because the majority culture has defined them as such, which actually do not reflect the values of all its inhabitants. Take for example whether it is o.k to live with your parents into your twenties or thirties, or in an extended family household. Your example of being late is interesting as we would rationalize that influences from my mother's culture were why she was always late! She was second generation.

I can also understand why someone who is not from America would on the surface, not be able to understand the self perception of differences between descendants of various ethnic groups within the US. You also may not be quite as knowlegeable (as you believe) about US history, and specifically the history of various ethnic groups. How history is taught in public school or college is different depending upon where you live in the US. It has also changed over time. Your criticism of Americans, who also identify with an ethnic heritage of their relatives, is one I have heard from others not born here. But as you know in Anthropology, there are many lenses, perspectives and voices to consider.

KL