Peters: October 18 2017 regular
school board meeting. I’d also like to welcome our
student representative from Chief Sealth high school
Alyssa Chin. Ms chin will have an opportunity
to provide comments regarding her school Later in the meeting.
So, Superintendent Nyland is out
of town at the moment at a conference, and director
Blanford is also out of town at a conference. So I see
that director Harris is joining us. So
with that Miss Shek the roll call please.
Shek: Director Burke. Burke: Here.
Shek: Dr. Geary. Geary: Here.
Shek: Director Harris. Harris: Here.
Shek: Director Patu. Patu: Here.
Shek: Director Pinkham. Pinkham: Present.
Shek: Director Peters. Peters: Here if you would please
stand for the Pledge of Allegiance. all: I pledge allegiance
to the flag of the United States of America,
and to the republic, for which it stands, one nation,
under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice
for all. So we do not have any
recognitions tonight but we do have a student presentation.
So students from South Shore pre-K to eight have
a presentation for us. And I would invite the board
directors to take a seat in the audience so we can enjoy
it as audience members. Thank you. DeWitt: So thank you for having
us and I we’re really excited to have some kids
that this is just an activity that has happened at our school
and it was such a great opportunity that we wanted
to bring the kids and let them see you. And have
you see them. So my name is Kristin DeWitte.
I’m the principal at South Shore. Last year our
teacher Katie Bedford who is the beautiful lady
of the back row in the blue, worked with Anita Koyier_Mwamba
and Marsha Tate Arunga who is a young elder in our area
to put together a reader’s theatre on the book The Stolen
Ones which happens to be a book that’s written by Marcia,
and she came in and what was different for us
when we talk about family engagement is that and I’m just
going to talk in my career, when I started as a teacher
in 1981 family engagement meant that you had events at your
school and families came in and they had a good time.
And as things moved on we learned about family engagement
and what we knew was that we needed to bring families
in and we need to take the opportunity to share what we
are doing at the school so families want to support us. They can do the things that we
are doing. But it also kind of came
as the point of the school was telling parents how to raise
their kids. And that’s a little
bit backwards. And so what we know in true
family engagement is that we look at the strengths of our
family in our community and we bring kids and their families in
and what happens is they teach us. And so
this event that took place at our school because our teacher
was so willing to let her kids come out and practice.
We had this great event and we got to learn all these wonderful
things about our families and about their histories and
the kids ask questions about this book and it just became
a fabulous opportunity to see them learn and know about their
own culture. So tonight they’re going
to present to you what they did. We have a few people that have
moved on so we have some new people doing a readers theater
on the book “The Stolen Ones” And before that I just
like to introduce both Anita and Marsha who have been sort
of sponsors to me in learning the whole Rainier
Beach community. And we often talk about
the things that South Shore gets we we do have a donor that gives
us money but that’s not where the riches come in our school
what the riches come from when community members come
into our building and share their knowledge with kids
and hold them up. And so tonight we’re trying
to model for you exactly what we’re doing at our School,
And I think that goes right along with our dual-capacity
framework that we’re trying to use in Seattle
Public Schools. So with that I’m going to turn
it over to Marcia and to Anita. But I’m going to give one plug
besides just doing small academic groups, I want
to tell you that when we checked the data on our students when we
involve them in activities like this every single one of these
children made typical or high growth last year. And I think
they should be applauded for their efforts so. Koyies-Arunga: So
good afternoon. Anita, and today
I stand before you as the incoming manager
of family partnerships which is very exciting at
the time that I did the work with Kristen and SouthShore
and Marsha, I was there as a coordinator
of family partnerships, and Miss Bedford
who was incredible through this process,
just raised the question of how do we get children more engaged?
And I figured well that would be a good place for us to actually
show what the work looks like at the school level so that we can
see what their alignments are at the district level. And so to do
that we looked at components of the dual capacity
building framework. And there were five pieces
that we felt were really important.
How do you create a situation where you link it to learning?
You make it relational, you make it collaborative,
You make it interactive, and you make it developmental.
So its not just a single time a one time service opportunity
and thats what we did. And then we thought about what
is it that the students
should learn? And we looked at their
learning standards, and we associated
this with the learning standards.
And what I said was we wanted to expand their skills
and capabilities. One was looking at the pedagogy
which is a call and response pedagogy which is very common
to African-American communities and other global African
communities and through that we got children at a variety
of levels of reading so that not everybody here came
in as a master reader. And thats the beauty
of this program. And then we reached out
to our community, and it’s pretty expensive
to get Marcia, but she blessed us and said I’ll do
it for nothing if it’s beneficial
to the students. So I just want to let you know
that when we tap into our community resources we can do
great things. And for these little ones this
is the reason we are all employed. So I just want
to thank them. To me they’re the heroes
of the day. And I’d like to introduce
Marcia Tate Arunga and she’ll take it from there. Thank you. Tate Arunga: I want to thank
South Shore for really stepping up and taking this initiative so
that we could work with the children.
Marsha Tate Arunga I am the proud community member,
and I’m the author of this book. It’s called the stolen ones
and how they were missed. I use this book as a tool
for teaching as the the history that is common to people
of African descent particularly the African-Americans who can
describe their story through the transatlantic slave trade,
and what that connection is to recent African immigrants.
And so it has been a really important tool
for understanding. We use many multiple
intelligences including verbal linguistic,
kinesthetic, bodily kinesthetic, we use interpersonal
and intrapersonal multiple intelligence skills to really
address what students need to learn this work.
And also we couple that with stage presence and
with team building. So they have a lot of work
they do together. I think that this is the cream
of the crop myself, but every student group that I work
with ends up being the cream of the crop. And so they will
set an example of their of their high level quality learning.
For other students in their classroom as well as people
in their community we hope that this book will be used not just
by the children, but by their families and anyone
who’s interested in lifelong learning.
So without further ado the students are going to read
for you it should be about a 18 minute read and we will provide
images that are in the book so that you can follow along with
the story. Thank you. Children: The Stolen Ones
and How They Were Missed by Marcia Tate Arunga. One day in the year 2000,
a group of African American women from the USA went
to visit Kenya, East Africa. As they sat in the back yard
of Their hostess, many women came to greet
the African Americans who had traveled to the homeland
of their ancestors. As they sat together,
the African American women shared stories and photos
of their families and community. One of the elders said,
You call yourselves African Americans,
where in Africa do you come from?
The African American women laughed and said, Well, we do
exactly where we come from. Sadly, we are not
all able to trace our exact roots like Alex Haley.
The elder, looked with a glimmer of light and recognition
as she declared, Oh! You must be the Stolen Ones!
The Stolen Ones you say? Who are they? we asked.
The elder began to tell the story… Long ago in Africa there lived
a beautiful girl named Nia. Her beauty came not only from
her lovely face and smile, but also from her kind heart. Nia was always thinking of others.
Nia was loved and admired by all in the village for the way
she walked with purpose and intention in her life.
The meaning of her name, Nia-Purpose. Nia had many gifts
and talents. One of the gifts
was her gardening skills. She made the soil in her garden
rich and fertile. In Kiswahili, the garden is called shamba.
Can you say Shamba? In Niaís shamba,
seeds were planted with care and attention and the crops
were plentiful and nutritious. All year long, Nia harvested big
juicy pai pai. Can you say, Pai Pal? Pai Pai means papaya
and it grows on tall trees. The pai pai from her trees grew
very big, sweet and juicy. She also grew maembe.
Can you say maembe? Maembe are mangoes from tall
trees that gave the sweetest fruit in all the land.
Her younger brother loved the delicious taste of maembe.
Nia watched him grow big and strong from itís
sweet taste. In Niaís garden there was ndizi
ó bananas. Can you say ndizi? Everyone loved to pop the little
fruits in their mouths as they enjoyed the delicious
sweet taste. Nia grew machungwa ó oranges.
Can you say machungwa? In Niaís garden,
machungwa had a green colored peel,
but inside, they were filled with a sweet succulent juice.
Like all of Niaís crops, these fruits grew larger than
any in the land and were always the most popular at the big
market in the nearby village.
In Niaís village
people lived together in harmony.
Families were healthy and strong.
Food was abundant and the granaries were full.
People shared in the good will of the village.
Children played happily while adults worked together. The elders in the village
were wise and loving. They advised people
in the village on matters that they believed would keep peace
and prosperity among them. The children learned many
lessons from watching their elders.
One harvest, Nia grew more sweet and succulent fruits than
ever before! The people in her village joined
in the celebration of Niaís harvest.
They asked that abundant blessing be received by Nia.
Many people gathered to dance, play games and celebrate
a prosperous harvest. Before everyone shared
in a feast, the people gathered for tambiko libation to honor
their ancestors. Can you say Tambiko?
They poured water on the ground as a sign of respect to those
who had come before them. When they acknowledged
their ancestors, they called the names
of their grand-parents, their great grand-parents,
all of their ancestors until they called back
many generations. They prayed for the common good
of the village, for Niaís safe journey and the quick sale of
her fruits. When the party ended,
Nia prepared for her safari, journey to the big market place.
This journey would take her many hours on foot. Nia used
the biggest kikapu-basket that had been in her family
for many generations. Can you say kikapu?
Nia took special care of the kikapu
that her grandmother had given her. She would one day
pass it to her own grandchild, just as it had been passed down
to her. As a small child, Nia practiced carrying the big
kikapu on top of her head. She knew that this was the best
way to carry things. If she had carried the basket in
her arms it would hurt her back and make her very sore
and tired. If she carried the kikapu
by the handle, this would be fine for only a short distance.
For long distances such as this journey, Nia knew
that carrying the kikapu on top of her head would be
the most suitable. After much practice,
Nia learned to walk with straight posture.
Her would body walked balanced and centered.
This way she could go for the long distance
without injury. The sokoni-market place
was filled with a lot of activity and excitement.
Can you say sokoni? Everyone was happy to see
Nia again. They loved her beautiful smile
and her warm heart. Customers knew that her fruits
would be a big treat. Niaís fruits sold quickly.
She took time to share stories and laugh with friends before
she began her return home. The money that Nia received
in exchange for her goods were called cowry shells.
This was a common kind of money in Africa. When Nia was half way home,
she heard brushing sounds in the bushes. When she turned
around to look, she did not see anything.
She continued her journey, then she heard footsteps
behind her. When she turned around to see
strange creatures rushed toward her and captured her by force.
Before she could run or scream for help, they grabbed
her by her hands and feet and tied them with a rope.
She fought and tried to pull away but they were very strong.
They pulled and dragged Nia for days to the edge
of the land, where the ocean was.
Nia was thrown into a dark cold dungeon where she was filled
with grief and fear. Nia heard many voices
around her. People were speaking
in languages that she did not recognize.
She struggled to see who they were but all she could see
was darkness. She was terrified and longed
to return to her mother and father who awaited
her arrival home. She hoped they would find her
and rescue her from the dark and cold dungeon.
Nia was shattered at the thought that she may not get back home
to her family. To her land and to her garden.
Due to grief and shock from having been stolen Nia lost
count of the days. One thing she knew:
she was determined to stay alive and find her way back home.
Many days had passed and still Nia did not know where
she was or how to free herself. One day, a huge ship stopped
just outside the dungeon. Nia heard people scram
as the doors opened. They were pushed and shoved out
of the doorway and forced to lay at the bottom of the horrible
smelling ship. She left by sea
to an unknown destination. Nia laid at the bottom
of the ship for days and days, or weeks and weeks.
For month and months! She laid there until her home
had become a distant memory. Meanwhile, in Niaís village,
a few days had passed and Niaís parents got very worried.
They called together the men in the village and organized
a search party. From hour to house and village
to village, the men searched everywhere for Nia, their
lost daughter. They could not find
her anywhere. They even went to the edge of
the land where the ocean waters were,
but they did not know that ships had come to take Nia in many
others away. After several months of looking
the search party returned home to tell Niaís family that she
could not be found. They declared that she must
be dead. Niaís family mourned her death
with deep sorrow. They cried and spent many days
remembering had and the life that she filled in the village
with her loving heart and her brilliant talents.
For years the elders of the village would gather
to discuss the loss of so many people who had disappeared
from their homes just as Nia had. One day,
a traveler passing by the village told how
he had seen big ships passing through the ocean.
He said that many of the young people who had disappeared from
the village were taken away and placed onto the ships.
He declared that they were not dad by instead they were stolen.
He explained that people had been forced to board those
horrible ships, never to be seen again.
People thought of those who had gone missing:
the hunters gardeners healers and thinkers who were so
violently stolen from them and they wept with despair.
During that time, so many people were stolen from their homes.
When the village gathers to honor their ancestors,
They always remember the stolen ones. Today we call
that time the Maafa tragedy. Year had passed when Nia
had grown old and feeble in the new land.
She called together the two children whom she had raised.
She told her children: I am old now and will die soon.
I want you to remember that you live in this land,
but your home is in Africa. Tell your children to tell
their children, until one day we will find our way back home.
As the elder finished telling this story,
she declared so you must be the stolen Ones returning
home Welcome! Karibu! Can you say Karibu?
When the seven women from America heard African
the homeland story of but Nia, she they was their learned
ancestor that to Nia was not only the ancestor of the African since
that Homeland, Since day. that The day, the women woman
from she was America vowed their to continue from reconnecting
ancestor Africa with too! their long lost family
in Africa. Together, they would build Mother Africa,
the ancestral homeland of Nia, who is the ancestor they share. Tate Arunga: Thank
you very much. This story is and the children
have explained was a true story told to us by an elder in Kenya
and I forgot to tell you that you would hear some key Swahili
words that you have learned and the students know very very well
as well so if there are any questions or comments. Yes:
*audience member speaking* we have done the first project we
did was at Denney middle school, where we turned it into a play,
and we had choreographers show African dance.
We had drummers and it was a very lively play.
We also did a project with Maple Elementary School
where students did an art project
and they were for the first time instructed to draw black
and brown faces. And it was an amazing project.
I was very touched by that. It was based on the book
and the read aloud is about five years old. We have done
the read aloud at through Africa town for about three years
and then we were gracious enough to be asked by South Shore
to come in. And so now we are at South Shore
and we would welcome teaching this content and the how to read
aloud to any school that requests us.
*Audience member speaking* Yes. We welcome that.
We welcome that with this important story. Yes. *audience member speaking*
Oh yeah. Well I’m. I’m going to let them respond to
that question. So thank you for asking. And you can also do them there
who would like to talk about oh I want you to talk about this.
We had Sanaya here had a problem with the the idea of growing old
and saying I will die soon and she had a big problem with that.
Can you explain. Children: Well it was hard
for us at first because we didn’t get -in third grade
of course, we didn’t get the part where… We
had to actually read it and like believe it like it
was true. Until she actually taught us
that it was true. We actually play out and said it
like we’re doing ourselves. Koyies-Arunga: And when you said
I will die soon you said what? Children: I said.. And I said
I’ll die soon, I said- Why would she say that to her children?
doesn’t that make any sense. And then. Ms. Arunga here tell
me that, well, I would say to my children,
but I wouldn’t At The same time. Koyies-Arunga: Ok.
Well I think what she’s pointing out with Sanaya pointing out is
that we had many discussions about the severity of the story,
and because they were able to stop,
she actually stopped her reading and said,
what you said was: this is so dark! And and it was it was true that
it was so dark but, it was it is a tender story but I think
that because it’s told about one child that it lessens
the impact. We don’t think about
the transatlantic slave trade in a way that it really there
were people left at home who wondered where
they were and never knew. And then there were people who
were brought to the new land not just to the Americas but around
the world. And as they were brought
to the new land they were even more terrified.
And these happened to be the ancestors of the people
who stand behind me. So it’s a story they need
to know and I don’t believe that they had any adverse reaction.
But if you have had any Please come in.
Describe what you felt. It sounds like a story
were you afraid?. OK. That’s a good one too.
But there’s a there’s a there’s a hand up. Do you have something
to say. OK that’s OK. OK. Next question.
* audience member speaking* The. Well we find that the the
the discussion of slavery begins in the fourth grade and more
elaborately in the fifth and then later in the 7th grade. Now I remember I am a product
also of Seattle Public Schools where I learned — Oh.. you know,
get over it. These were Africans who sold you
and move on. And when I heard this story from
an elder that we were missed, it was one thing we had heard
that there was stealing going on,
and that it wasn’t a very well organized exit that people
were taken in violent ways. But I had never been told
that we were missed or remembered.
And so it gave back some dignity to that story. And for those
who are in the fourth and fifth grade classes you know
that the story of the transatlantic slave trade
is a very bitter one. It’s one that leaves children
really scathed and they don’t have anyone to talk to about it.
So this is more of a how do you feel about that.
How did you feel about her dying.
Well let’s talk about that and let’s stop and talk
about human feelings that put together the story. OK. OK. So
we’re asked to introduce the children because our time
is up. And so they will come up. Just give your names.
They are all in the fourth grade.
They have three different classrooms that they are in at
South Shore and we’ll begin with you. Children: Children
introduce themselves. Koyies-Arunga: And together
they make the read aloud reader’s theatre Southshore. And on behalf of Miss DeWitt we
would like to present every board member with a copy
of their own book and it is autographed by myself
and it says that I would like to personally
thank all of you for your service to our children. Peters: OK. Thank you so much
to our presenters from south shore. So I will now
turn it over to Deputy Superintendent Nielsen
for his comments. Nielsen: Good evening everyone.
As noted earlier Dr. Allen is out of the area
he’s attending the Council of Great City Schools conference
where later this week he will be joined by director Geary and
they will be presenting on our eliminating
the of the opportunity gaps to a national audience. uh..
we were recognized for that effort across
the country. And we appreciate
the opportunity to share with others to make
the difference for them. I also am a little bit humbled
beyond a little bit. The the presentation by our
South Shore students and the topic is beyond amazing
and is very. It’s a good reminder of what we
need to do to work together and to love one another. This is.
Appreciate your principal month. And we have some
terrific principals. We have terrific staff in our
school district so we want to acknowledge them.
We want to acknowledge them for their leadership for their
passion for their caring for what they do to help all of our
students for their work with our tremendous teaching staff.
It’s a hard job to be a principal and we thank them
for that. We’re also celebrating
Indigenous Peoples Day this month. And so we are
looking at the contributions that our First Nations people
have made here and the legacy they have left for us.
And we want to acknowledge them again tonight. Also noted this month as we are
working on bullying this is national bullying month
and we’re working among other things on a pilot program
this year to lessen or hopefully eliminate cyber bullying
on social media. A very important topic something
that is very powerful and something we need
to address. There’s more information about
a lot of these kinds of things on our site visits
and on the back table. Shifting over to our
strategic plan. Remember that it has three
components educational excellence and equity improving
students in school and family and community engagement.
So on the educational excellence and equity we are committed
to building an understanding across our schools and our
departments on how to eliminate the opportunity gap.
And we are looking at our racial justice and accelerated learning
for all of our students. And tonight we are fortunate
to hear from one of our outstanding principals
in schools so I’d like to invite Hellen young to come up and make
another introduction and talk a little bit about that.
Excellent work. And one of our terrific schools
in West Seattle. young: Good evening. Thank you.
It is my pleasure to introduce to you principal Erika Ayer
from Sanislo elementary tonight. This is Erica’s seventeenth year
as an educator, And 11th year as principal in Seattle
Public Schools. Erika and I started last year
together in our new roles and since her arrival Erica
has been focusing on building strong systems of professional
collaboration to ensure every student receives high quality
instruction and individualized support as stated in our formula
for success. The major initiative
of the second pillar or student focused collaboration highlights
the MTSS framework. Her staff is working hard
to provide equitable access increased teacher collaboration
through the MTSS Team, and provide tier support
for students. We are learning from schools
like Sanislo to replicate replicate MTSS best practices.
Please welcome principal Erika Ayer. Ayer: Good evening.
Thank you for having us here. I’d like to introduce my
colleague Marcy Shepherd Shaw who is the head teacher at
Sanislo and in previous years has also been our math
interventionist and is a key member of our MTSS team. I believe we have a PowerPoint. So Sanislo, as Helen mentioned,
is in West Seattle and just a little bit briefly about
who we are: every morning we start off with our Pledge
of Allegiance and with our mission statement Sanislo
is a safe learning community dedicated to building respectful
and responsible citizens and empowering all learners.
And this year as a staff we recommitted to being a learning
community for all the adults involved as well. Can we move to the next
slide please. Thank you. We are a small school,
we’re 237 students currently in the Puget Ridge neighborhood
of West Seattle and we’re very culturally
and linguistically diverse. Sixty five percent of our
students receive free and reduced lunch 15 percent
of our students are reported as homeless.
Twenty four and a half percent of our students receive ELL
services and thirteen and a half percent of our students receive
special education services. When I arrived at Sanislo last
year I was very fortunate that the previous principal had laid
the foundation for the MTSS work through in the three years where
principal Rhodes was there, he began the conversations about
the importance of having an MTSS model and so that allowed me
to build off of that foundation. Part of that was to hire
the right people and the right positions in the last 14 months
I’ve hired 10 people at Sanislo elementary that serve again
237 students. We have partnered with multiple
community based organizations that support our MTSS model,
and our we have aligned our model with the formula
for success and the strategic plan. And so our model, has three pillars.
We’re focused on adult learners, student learners, in our center
and the positive
learning environment. And they allign with the three
pillars of the formula for success.
The high quality teachers and leaders pillar one student
focused collaboration and pillar two and that commitment
to racial equity pillar three. In pillar one are
adult learners. All of our teachers and staff
participate in professional learning community and meet
weekly together to plan and review student data.
Twice a month Our teachers have an opportunity to visit each
other’s classrooms through learning walk.
We were able to do this by having a creative
PCP’s schedule. We de-brief what we’ve learned
with each other and provide feedback to the teachers about
what they saw what they learned and the questions they have.
We have monthly data meetings with the teachers and our MTSS
team and make adjustments accordingly to make sure
that we’re provided the differentiated
differentiated learning opportunities.
We are fortunate this year to partner with the Saturburg
initiative and so we have coaching support this year
to also help our teachers improve their instructional
practice and we are also part of the Southwest school’s
attendance initiative which provides more resources
and learning for our staff. And I’m not going to turn
it over to Marcy who’s going to talk about our student
learners pillar two, Shepard Shaw: Hi,
thank you for having us. In… We have a map a math
interventionists and an ELA interventionist that’s our math
interventionists has a team of three,
and they have taken on the task of assessing every single
student at our school to make sure they are. .. so they can
look at data, driving. Instruction through data, so students can learn where
they are. They can be re-taught
what they need and they can be pushed to x to be enriched if
they need to be. They work closely with classroom
teachers and so they are able to meet or exceed growth.
Our ELL team has embraced the new CC curriculum
and they’re experts in LLI and Cips for interventions so
they can give all students access to the content needed
to be successful be successful not only at their grade level
but beyond. And they also align great bands so they are ready
for the next grade. Our attendance campaigns include
tier 1 2 and 3 campaigns our Tier One is a daily campaign
where the acknowledge the classrooms that have 100
percent attendance, our tier two campaign is a weekly check and connect every single day and our Tier Three is we have 10 teachers who have volunteered for long term commitment to up to three students each so we’re serving 30 kids right now with the hope that we’ll grow throughout the school and every teacher and every person in our school will sponsor two to three students and that will be a half our, half our student population will
be receiving one on one check and connect. we do regular data cycles so we
can make sure that students are getting what they want and if
they can be exited out of an intervention system we can
enter a new student and this helps us to individualize
education to meet every student’s needs where they are
and beyond. Ayer: Thank you Marcy, a just
an explanation of what this is this is a banner that is out
front of our building that we adjust every week to show our
community what our attendance rate is.
We do share that with the students at every
Friday to announce where we were the previous Friday and where we
are this week. We do have a school wide monthly
attendance goal as well. This month I believe we
were looking for a ninety seven point three percent.
So that hopefully will let you know in November if we’ve
made it. Our next slide is one of our data walls this is our
reading levels for our students. It is two data points
it’s the Map score as well as the Fontis and Pinnell.
This is the fall reading scores. This gives us a visual example
of where our students are and who needs interventions
and who needs accelerations. This is a visual representation
of our independent reading levels for Fontis and Pinnell
for fall. This is a poster
that is in the hallway for everyone to see.
Just recently we added a new component to this where we’ve
asked families to put a sticky note underneath the poster
to indicate how they can help support all of our learners. Pillar three
positive environment, this is some of the posters that
you also see in the wall in the halls at Sanislow.
We have school wide behavior expectations that are explicitly
taught at the beginning of the year by all of our
staff members. And it’s we have visual
representation as well as the words so that we can
differentiate for our varied learners.
In addition to some of this work that we’re doing with PBIS We
have a focus as well for professional development
on racial equity as a staff. We have weekly assemblies
as a school. We have a word of the month
which is this month is ambition and it’s we call them qualities
for success. In addition to our
interventionists we also have a full time counselor a youth
services assistant and again our regular progress monitoring
of our discipline and attendance data. And so to close up we cannot do
this work alone. There are a lot of adults
who are supporting the students at Sanislo,
So we’re very grateful. We have many community partners.
We are very lucky to be a family and educations levies school
and part of the Saterburg initiative as well.
Some of the community based organizations that we work
with are City Year, reading partners,
and this year we started partnering with the United Way
of King County for fuel your future so that every single one
of our students will receive breakfast.
We are creative advantaged school.
We partner with Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra so that each
and every one of our fourth and fifth graders who play
a string instrument have a coach. NAVOS which is mental health.
And this year we also implemented watchdog’s
which is bringing more of our community members
into our building. And that is all.
Thank you very much. Nielsen: Thank you very much
Erica and Marcy. I also want to acknowledge some
outstanding work that took place last week at Chief Sealth high
school that is around our schooling for racial justice.
It was a sold out event that took place all day during
a professional development day and it was one of those things
where those that weren’t able to attend were all saying wow
I heard it was great. I’m hoping to be able to do
something like that soon. So I want to think Kesha scarlet
and Brant Jones for helping make that reality. And we look
forward to that continuing. And as we work on the EOG effort
around our systems improvements the budget continues to be
a challenge for us next year as we look at our budget
for operating the Seattle Public Schools.
It’s a unique year in that the changes of funding
from the state include a little bit of all of the old funding
model and some of the new. So as we look forward to next
year we don’t see any dire changes beyond the cuts that we
already made for this year what we do see however
is a serious problem in the years following that and
that the state funding will decline in relationship to our
needs and we will not have the resources in the future
to do the kinds of things that we currently do
to help students. And we believe the legislature
has a lot to do. We hope that the court
recognizes that and makes the legislature come back
to work and get their job done. On school
and community engagement. We’ve had a lot of input on high
school advanced learning. We’ve had over 2000 families
engaged all kinds of good things going on there including
multi languages. Those people that have attended
those have translators they have the ability to provide feedback
in matters that we’ve never been able to achieve before because
we want to hear from all of our communities. We want
to learn what people are looking for and we want to be able
to improve our systems. We also have a Web site
satisfaction survey. We have engagement coming around
a student assignment plan and high school boundaries.
We will have five I believe. Five regional meetings
coming up. So make sure we get people out
to see those in the good news department.
We have a teacher librarian at Ballard who is a finalist
to receive a $100000 grant for making the library a social
culturally and technological improvement center so we hope
that she is able to receive that grant.
There’s a dinner coming up from LGBT families on November
2nd at meany. You can find more information
how to sign up and attend. John Kroll has been named
to the city technology advisory committee.
That’s a new event for the Seattle Public Schools
so we’re looking forward to more relationship with the city
in a positive way. Hazel Wolf k-8 stem is featured
on the fall cover of learning by design magazine.
We’re training our substitutes. And for the record we are
drawing more and more from substitutes because there
is a teacher shortage that is not unique to Seattle it
is unique to the country. Once again we don’t have
the funding to adequately pay our staff as we would like to
and that it creates more substitutes so we are training
our substitutes helping them to be better in the classroom.
At the interagency we have a number of programs that do
good things for kids. And one of the things that we
have that many people don’t know about is high school program
for incarcerated students and we just celebrated the graduation
of five students this week. And they don’t always graduate
on the same schedule as everyone else and so we just want
to celebrate that and let our public know that we do
everything we can to serve all students. A couple of things coming up we
are served in transportation by first student and they have
a labor agreement with Teamsters.
There is a dispute going on right now we hope
that they are able to settle the dispute.
So we are able to transport all of our students as agreed upon
in our contract and we are looking forward
to that settlement. Finally we have 24 credits
switching over for graduation and it is a lot of work.
It’s a big lift and a change for our high schools.
So we’re working with our principals are teachers in our
communities to address how do we switch over to that. It
is a change for the students and their families and that will
be a topic coming up with more work as we go through the year.
So I’d like to end by just saying that we have much
to celebrate. A lot has taken place.
And I’d like to thank everyone dedicated to addressing our work
and supporting our students. Thank you. Peters: Thank
you Deputy Nielsen. So we will now turn to our
student guests. And again I’d like to welcome
Lisa Chen. Lisa is a very involved student
leader a chief Sealth International
High School. She currently serves in student
government as a junior class vice president and is a student
leader in the link crew ninth grade mentorship program.
Additionally she’s a full diploma student in our
international baccalaureate program as well as a member
of Sealths Academy of finance. As if this were not enough.
Alisa is on Chief Sealths wrestling and girl’s
softball team. In short she’s a very impressive
young person and a great representative for Chief Sealth
and will now turn it over to her for her remarks. Thank. You. Chen: At Chief Sealth currently
it’s homecoming week. So currently we have our
spirit week. Today was Denim on Denim
and Friday we have our tailgate game which is what I’m doing
for link crew. So it’s for our ninth graders
and we also have the game right after That’s our homecoming game
and the homecoming right after. This year, I think our spirit
week has been pretty good compared to all the other years
we’ve had a lot of improvement in student appearance
in the spirit. For our link crew, We are also
planning a lot of freshmen activities this year and we’re
planning to have more connections between our freshmen
to allow them to have a better year. For my full IB diploma program,
I believe that I’m being very challenged so that’s going very
well also. And so far our sports are doing
very well too. I believe our school has been
doing great this year. For when it comes to our
diversity and how it’s been Indigenous Day month, and how we
had an assembly earlier this month and it was based
on Indigenous Peoples Day and it was on the day
of indigenous people. It was it was to me personally
I believe that was it an amazing assembly.
And it just showed the diversity at Chief Sealth that we have. Peters: Thank you very
mich Alisa. So I invite you to. Remain with us up here as long
as you want for the whole meeting if you like or
if you want you can stay for the public testimony that’s
always an interesting part of the meeting. And you can also
respond afterwards if you’d like. So we now have
reached the consent portion of tonight’s agenda.
May I have a motion for the consent agenda. Harris: I. Move
the consent agenda. Pinkham: I second the motion. Peters: Okay. Approval
of the consent agenda has been moved and seconded directors
have any items they would like to remove
from the consent agenda. OK. None. All of those in favor of
the consent agenda signify by saying. Aye.
All opposed the consent agenda has passed. So we have reached the public
testimony part of the meeting but it’s not yet 5:30.
So I’m not going to invite any board directors to begin their
director’s comments at this time. With the option
of responding to the public comments later on.
So anybody who’s ready to say a few words at this point. Director Burke Thank
you for volunteering. Burke: I will I will start
with some of the brief perfunctory is just to kind
of get this going and then maybe come back afterwards. So beginning with all this.
Thank you for joining us. And so did I hear correctly both
Academy of finance and full IB diploma. Yeah. I think I think
that’s commendable. I’ve heard really great things
about the academies at Chief Sealth. I understand that there was a
like a career fair something like on Monday. Yeah.
Did you participate in that? Chen: Yes I was. There
was a field trip on Monday where all of the Academy including
finance and hospitality we all went to the Seattle Washington
Convention Center. And we all learned
I had lectures on how to basically.
Be come in the business world. And we also had networking where
we would connect with others to get into whatever summer
internships we want and basically get out
into the business world. So that was also really fun
as my first year doing it. I got a lot of business cards
from that. So I’m hoping to get
an internship this summer. Burke: That is great.
We love to hear that here on the board as well.
We will talk about that sort of work all the time.
So happy to hear that. I want to thank the South Shore
K-8 community for coming out and sharing both the the actual
content of the stolen ones and the story behind it and some of
the the the nuances about having those conversations at that age
and I appreciate the dialogue with the audience as well.
And the Q&A there I thought that was really. Really great
thank you to principal and her team for the work
they do at Sanislow. I really as a as kind
of an engineer geeky person I am I fancy the way they’ve built
out an actual structure that’s based on the formula success
elements but they’ve personalized it for their school
and they’re really owning that. And so we’re looking forward
to your long term student benefits community benefits
and hearing more about that work in the future. I will I’ll go to my community
meetings. I have two community meetings
that are scheduled October 28 at Greenwood public library
from 3:30 to 5:00 and December 9th in Fremont public library
from one to two thirty. Those are probably both posted
on the Web site. I’m thrilled that director
Harris and I are going to be co-sponsoring another meeting
we’re trying something in addition to reaching out to
the community in general. We’re trying to do some specific
outreach to our educators because they’re the ones that
that really make this magic happen. So we have
a meeting scheduled a central location November 4th.
Four to 5:30 p.m. and we’re going to try to do
you know maybe every couple of months themed meetings.
This first meeting is going to be themed around career
and technical education. So it will be an opportunity
for anybody to come but we’re going to be focusing
on the questions the conversation on some
of the CTE the work that the district is is doing
and trying to understand what that looks like in the classroom
and how. How we can build out
these structures. What are the the the leverage
points we should be looking at. So we’re really excited about
that work on November 4th and we’ll get that posted
on the Web site and send out some invitations as well. I’m going to I’m going to close
these initial comments just by. I wanted to I wanted to go on
the record as we’re looking at our high school boundaries
because this is going to be a really challenging
conversation and there’s a lot of staff that have been doing
work and community and our high school boundaries task force
to understand in a relation between where our students live
how we draw our boundaries and where they go to high school
and also how that relates to our our K-8 pathways. And one
of the things that’s confounding that is that the community knows
well the board knows well staff knows well is understanding how
we translate our highly capable students from K-8
into high school. And I think that’s been a long
topic of conversation. And so I just wanted to feel
like we have not been able to put. We haven’t been able
to actualize a clear vision so I’m just going to throw out mine because I figure if I put it out there people can comment on it.
We can see how it fits and I’m just going to say
that in the long term I believe that our high schools should not
be pathways for highly capable. And they know
that that something that might be a little bit of a
contentious view. But I think if we look through
the what would things look like if they were perfect it would be
that we would offer services at every high school
that would draw our highly capable students from their
neighborhoods into their high schools would serve them where
they are in a way that they their families want
to be served. So I say that as a long term but
I also say that we’re we’re not there yet. We have schools
that come that that are serving a lot of highly capable students
and some of them with dedicated pathways some of them without
dedicated pathways. And then we also have some
schools that are are I would say less friendly to that particular demographic or are. Less supportive of the idea that
that there are groups of highly capable students that might
benefit from special types of classes or programming. And so my belief is that we
as a district the board the staff the school leaders we
have to reach a a level of agreement where we can put
high quality highly capable learning in our high schools
before we can expect our families to want to go there.
So again a long term vision to get there and a short term
vision to solve our capacity problem.
And I believe the way to do that is to just put kids in Ingram
for the north end. And for Garfield
for the south end. And then once we resolve.
The space constraints then we can have some really thoughtful
conversations about how to do that in the long term.
And I welcome feedback to me as an individual or you know
further conversation on the topic which I know will
come up at these next five community meetings. Just had to go there. Thank you. Peters: Thank
you Director Burke. Anybody else who has some
comments at this time. Director Harris? Speaker 45: Welcome all of you.
And thank you for coming down. You are truly welcome here.
And we are listening. It’s difficult for us not to be
able to answer the questions that are posed to us at
the podium and having spent a fair amount of time at
that podium during public testimony prior to my arrival in
the dias. It’s a frustrating system but if
you go to the Web site you will find all of our e-mails or
if you’d like to write to each of us in a group
[email protected] and I encourage you to do
that and. It’s ok to remind us even though
we get dozens and dozens of e-mails a day. And it’s OK
to take us for a cup of coffee to tell us your stories and if
you could and would give us constructive suggestions and put
a price tag on them hugely appreciated because we truly are
in this together. Thank you to the south shore
principal SPS family partnerships. Ms.
Aronga* and especially the students.
That was amazing. And it’s my hope that teaching
and learning together with Deputy Superintendent
Neilson will broadcast this out through the Puget Sound
educational district and throughout our district with
a replicatable curriculum. I don’t know your fancy words
for this but that piece of this curriculum so that we
can in fact replicate because that was powerful
wonderful stuff. Congratulations to our
Chief Sealth International High School student who has since
left here can see it from my home. Proud proud mother of a chief’s
health international high school graduate. Chief Sealth has done some
pretty amazing things and frankly they’ve done
it on a shoestring and it is the staff at
Chief Sealth that is working really hard to bring up all
of our students and it’s exciting to see what’s
going on there. Principal Ayers
and her team again. District 6. Less than a mile from the house.
Principal Ayers was the assistant principal at
a school that my daughter attended in and she’s a hero
of mine. Delbridge community meetings
West Seattle district 6 at the Delbridge library.
October 21st 3 to. November 18th. Three to five.
You now have a 1 in 2 chance of getting lasagna.
If you come and it’s good and worth it. And also
as director Burke mentioned November 4th where we are going
to co-sponsor a conversation. Folks will remember the last
board meeting where this board voted 7 — 0 to ask
the city to collaborate towards including the Seattle Public
Schools in the Fort Lawton EIS. This is not to replace Housing
as the city has been working on since 2008 but to in fact
supplement it and It was a long and rich discussion.
We passed the resolution and much to my extreme dismay, the next day the superintendent
Wrote an email to one of his valued colleagues
a professor at Seattle Pacific University and to the mayor of
the city of Seattle and said: The short version is the school
district does not meet the requirements
of the immediate need and immediate funding in hand. To say that I am extraordinarily
distressed that less than 24 hours after this board passed
a resolution to have our superintendent undermine us is
on its face not OK. And I’ll reserve my comments
for after public testimony. Peters: Thank
you Director Harris. So anybody else who has a few
more comments to round out the half hour Director Gearn. Geary: Hello Everybody. So thank you to the south shore
read aloud theater. That was a treat. I think some
of you many of you came in afterwards but it was our
students from South Shore taking turns to read this lovely book
that taught them about their heritage and how the narrative
of slaves being taken or Africans being taken from Africa
brought to the United States as slaves
This is one perspective. But the thought of the gap left
by those communities losing people losing their children
sending out their fathers and mothers out to their daily
activities and never seeing them again was truly powerful because
I think all of us. That’s one of our greatest fears
that one of our loved ones would leave our day and we
would never see them again and we would have no
understanding of who they are. And that’s what these children
are learning. And it’s an important frame
of reference. And I know when you put it in
that context you see how powerful it is and how we’re all
just not one perspective so often on these stories
and it’s so easy if you just shift the lens how it takes
on a whole different meaning and how important it is that we
constantly look for ways to shift our lens to somebody
else’s perspective to get the full story. So I was so
deeply moved by that. And I will remember it forever. Thank you to our Sanislow
Elementary teachers and the partners that are coming
together it once again confirms that in order to make public
education work in an era of underfunding we have
to continue to reach out to our partners who come into our
schools with a belief that our teachers are doing a great job
can do a great job and will support us in our work.
So thank you for all of that. Last week I had the great
pleasure and honor to witness three ways.
Our district is institutionalized
institutionalizing equity. We’ve been talking about this it
has been one of our goals for many years and I know many
people are like where is why aren’t we seeing anything.
Where is it happening. And I think you know this is not
button work. We’re not going to see
as they said in this. I heard earlier today not in
this book but I heard earlier today you don’t expect to reap
a harvest on seed you sowed yesterday.
You have to wait. You have to take care of them
you have to nurture them. You have to bring them up.
And we will start seeing that payoff I believe.
And I was seeing right now we’re really fertilizing the work
of we’re really watering it. And I came in one day
and this room was filled with principles
and they were receiving a presentation on how to examine
their own racial biases in their work and how that will impact
them and how they talk to and teach their students.
And that was they were there eager to participate.
And really you could tell they were happy to be there.
They were learning. And then the next day again in
this room I saw all of a huge cohort of our second year
teachers who are participating in the Star mentor program.
And again getting similar race and equity training.
And again a full room of people paying attention there
voluntarily in order to do the work.
And then Friday I had the honor of going to the eliminating
the opportunity gaps Institute schooling for racial justice.
I had the pleasure of meeting one of our star.
IA’s Anthony Washington, who is doing this work.
I had the pleasure of meeting him talking with him about
it talking about his goals to really get in there and make
a difference for our kids. And again a room of people super
jazzed that this work is finally being spread that we’re doing
the training and they’re being given the tools to take
this and put this on the ground in their classrooms.
So I wanted to report that because I hear so often
it’s not… It’s invisible to many of our families but our teachers
are in there doing the work and they are really appreciative
and excited about taking it into their classrooms. So I heading off tonight
on a red eye to Cleveland to attend the Council
of Great City Schools. This is a conference
that is designed specifically for urban school districts
the biggest in the nation. And it’s this particular
training it’s interesting it’s almost like speed dating
with our urban districts every district is around different
themes puts on 15 minute presentations and so you can go
and for three days just get this overload of information
about all the great work people are doing everywhere and you get
a chance to take it. And it’s so interesting because
you’ll hear things and you’ll get a chance to see how
different districts are making it all work. And then you have
the names and the numbers and you can bring
that information back. So I know we have quite a few
of our staff, not you know not tons but I think about five or
six of us will be there. And I have to say
it is it is really a benefit it’s doing that professional
development at a very high level and learning how to find out
the best practices and bring them back to our district.
So if anybody has a specific question they want me to ask
this during this training of anybody I can find to answer
it send me an email and I’ll be happy to do that. I will be
having my director meeting on October oh shoot..
I didn’t put that date on it. That’s going to be and again I’m
going to do that. It’s solid ground. Give me one
moment I can get up a calendar. Can do that for me and then I’m
continuing to have my next what’s next Saturday? The date?
Well it will be next Saturday, not this one because I’ll be
in Cleveland but Saturday following.
And then I’m continuing to have Tuesday morning coffees at
Zoka Blakely from eight to nine thirty am.
And please just feel free to drop by to listen in on other
people’s concerns or share your own with me and we get a date on
that and I’ll get back with you. But it’s next Saturday.
I just don’t have the date in front of me. Thanks. Peters: Thank
you Director Geary. So as we’ve now reached 5:30 we
will now go to public testimony the rules for public testimony
are on the screen. And I would like to ask
the speakers be respectful of these rules. I would note
that the board does not take public comments on items related
to personnel or individually named staff.
I would also like to note that each speaker has a two
minute speaking turn. When the two minutes have ended.
Please conclude your remarks. Ms Schek will read off the names
of the testimonies speakers and thank you all
for coming tonight. Shek: First up her public
testimony we have Khain Vassar-Fontenot followed
by Hani Ahmed and Chris Jackins. Vassar-Fontenot: Hello members
of the board I’m also a student from Chief Sealth international
high school and I heard you talking earlier about a way
to to attract highly capable students in a way to maximize
and also create equity in our school environment.
And now as the president of the chiefs of blacks
of the Union and the co-captain of the mock trial team I find
that debate and teaching students how to actually debate
in mock trial settings and in debate settings increases
increases the student attraction and both of these
things in mock trial. This year students learn how to proper how
to learn the legal process they learn.
They create their own direct and cross-examination.
They basically get a crash course on trial and two days
and then over a span of four months. Four or five
months they get the opportunity to perform this actual trial in
the King County Courthouse in February. This program to me has done
a lot more for me as a public speaker as a debater
as a student of Chief Sealth. It makes me more confident in
who I am and for the people who I know also join
this they could say the same. Students who have participated
in a mock trial program have gone on to Reed,
University of Pennsylvania studying international relations
at the University of Washington. So I just want to keep on back
your mind. That debate and programs
like mock trial give students these confident give students
confidence and the opportunity to be able to express their
ideas in a new way and have an impact on their school
because everybody obviously sees the impact. A mock trial
has on school especially when we come to school dressed
like this. Thank you. Thank you. Honey of it. Ahmed: Good evening.
Seattle School Board members on RBHS boundary changes all
the draft that came coming out of high school boundary
task force. Task Force negatively impacts
Rainier Beach High School. The numbers are highlighted on
the paper I gave you. I also attached a copy
of the student’s proposal for the boundary changes. What is the district or school
board members long term goal for Rainier Beach High School
in Cleveland high school and what is the high school boundary
test force committees communities long term goal for
the growth of Rainier beach high school in Cleveland high school?
Do they align with each other? And is the district going
to continue its commitment to the growth of Rainier Beach
High School? Will the addition of Cleveland
high school boundaries negatively impact Rainier Beach
High School? Are we looking with equity lense
on the state of Virginia Beach High School structure?
Two things that happened last week:
an announcement that was made in the late afternoon that no one
should use or drink any water coming within the school.
Keep in mind this is during high school hours. The announcement was made over
the intercom. The reason for this announcement
was because the city was either fixing or cleaning a pipe
that directs water to Ranier Beach high school.
My question is did the city not communicate
this with Seattle Public Schools or vice versa? And why didn’t no
one in the building know about this ahead of time? A couple of days later
in the same week there was an announcement made about
a possible low air quality or odor because a pipe busted in
the school student students were told to stay in class as
they were not allowed to be in the hallways until an hour later
when the fire department confirmed it was safe.
This interrupted our instructional time as students
were not allowed to change into their next class.
This will not occur if our building was renovated.
We do not intend to lambast the district
and to become divisive. We come to let the school
members know that we will not stop fighting
for a healthy environment, quality education,
and equitable environment, Peters: Thank you. Jackins: My name
is Chris Jackins box 8 4 0 6 3 Seattle 9 8 1 2 4.
On the September warrants: payroll is listed
with a notation that does not reflect direct deposit.
Does the school board ever see and approve the full
payment amount. Playground space: three points.
Number one the district shrank. Playground space at Loyal
heights one reason these unpopular district plans went
forward is that previous boards did not object #2 the district
is currently planning to shrink playgrounds at Magnolia,
Wing Luke, and Queen in elementary schools.
Number three a board needs to object to these plans. On policy 21:61 special
education on the resolution on career and technical
education partnerships. Three points. Number one
the district once employed special education student
interns in its mailing department.
To the district unfortunately ended this program
has the program been reestablished?
If not please print it back. Number three this approach seems
better than what is apparently being proposed in the resolution
which would seek private partnerships for public
school programs. On School bus drivers.
Four points. Number one when the district
moved to implement further changes to school start times
have allocated funds to meet the transportation costs. Number two the district
should have made a similar effort to improve benefits
for school bus drivers. Number three and current
contract talks. School bus drivers are again
seeking to address shortfalls in medical and pension benefits.
Number four Please help improve the contract. Thank you. Bryan: Hello my name
is Amy Bryan and I’m the Whittier PTA
legislative representative. Current students impacted
by boundary changes in areas 127 and 128 were new kindergartners
at most In November 2013 these families did not have a voice in
this process. They were not informed
of the scheduled change upon enrollment and the two
informational meetings were held less than five months before
this board votes on related
district recommendations. This change which isolates these
families geographically moves these families to a school that
for many is farther away than four other schools and for some
across five major arterials. District meetings informed
families of the option to grandfather at Whittier but
no transportation is provided to the only Whittier area
that qualifies for bus service and no sibling
enrollment guarantee. This is a false choice for many
who depend on transportation or who have siblings entering
elementary school in the next few years.
These 90 students from 76 families represent 18 percent
of our student body but 20 percent of current enrolled
special education students 26 percent of our students of color
9 single parent families and 40 percent of our English
language learners. This boundary change fails
several district principals regarding Boundary development,
to provide equitable access to programs and services
maximize walkability maintain key features of the new SAP
including diversity within boundaries.
To minimize disruptions by aligning new and current
boundaries when possible and to be responsive to family
input to the extent feasible. There is no plan in place
to address equal or greater capacity issues at Adams North
Beach Viewlands and continued under enrollment is projected at
loyal heights and Greenwood. I have met with these PTA
presidents and we all want to know what the big picture is.
We are drafting a letter to the board in district
to challenge the current boundary change process
and the lack of forward planning for our region in the district
that disrupt our families and communities.
Just as you prioritize middle high school in advanced learning
pathways we want to engage with you to prioritize family
and community pathways. We know Whittier is running out
of space. Please help us find
transportation funding and ensure sibling enrollment
for these families and let us know how we can help.
Peters: Thank you. pecoraro: Hello I’m
Kelly Pecoraro. I have a second grader at
Whittier and a child who has a late summer birthday
and enter school either in the fall of 2018 or 2019.
I find the proposed boundary changed to area 1:27
and the related policies related to this change to be out
of alignment with key SPS beliefs and goals. On SPS
website it states we believe it is essential to place
the interests of students above all others and every decision we
make and one of the SPS goals is to strengthen school family
and community engagement. I’m extremely thankful
that the district is recommending grandfathering
so that my daughter can complete her elementary education at
a school. She’s already spent over two
years at. However next year or
the following I will still be faced with a challenge if I’m
unable to get my son into Whittier since grandfather
and siblings of siblings is not guaranteed at that point.
I will have to face the very difficult choice of either
asking my daughter to change schools in third or fourth grade
or to have my children at two different schools.
If I keep my daughter at Whittier to avoid voice forcing
her to make a major social and academic shift more than
halfway through elementary I will need to take
her to school since transportation will not
be provided. This means I’ll have to put
a kindergartener on the bus to get to a school that he’s not
familiar with at all and is over a mile away from our home even
though he does not yet attend Whittier he’s very much a part
of the community. He’s been Whittier almost every
day for more than half his life. He knows teachers staff students
and parents and they know him. Having him attend Loyal Heights
would be just a big just as big a transition for him
as it would be sending my daughter there. And how do
I explain that she gets to go to Whittier. But he does
not As for me, I would now be part of two school committees.
I am currently vice president of the PTA Whittier but I think it
would be extremely challenging on many levels to be anywhere
near as well as involved if at all. If I’m bouncing
between two schools and neighborhoods multiple times
a day this hurts not only our family but the school
communities We would be a part of. I know we’re not
alone in this situation and it is impossible decision to put
one child’s welfare before another’s.
And yet that is what you’re asking us to do with not
allowing grandfathering of siblings the families
affected by boundary change. Thank you.
Peters: Thank you. Renfrow: Ladies and gentlemen of
the school board first I want to thank you for giving me
an opportunity to speak. I reside in the area
that is part of next year’s boundary change she moved
to loyal heights. While I appreciate the grand
without transportation, it really does put the burden on
the parents to then provide transportation for the rest of
the child’s time at the elementary. We are two
income family and it would be a huge burden on our family
to have to provide transportation
to and from school for the next five years.
Jamie just started kindergarten and loves Whittier.
Her older sister Bella just left Whittier last year or so
she has already spent a lot of time there for various
functions and already felt at home before her first day
of kindergarten. But I feel that we are being
forced to switch since you won’t allow for transportation.
I’ve heard the cost estimates provide transportation but there
must be another way. I would even be willing to walk
several blocks into the Whittier boundary and have her catch
a bus where there is already a bus stop with other children
going to Whittier to catch the bus.
And I believe that would offset the estimated cost given
if the bus is already picking up children.
One more child at that stop can’t make a huge difference
in my mind I think I heard 40000,
but I’m not positive. Another worry that I have about
next year is that if Jamie does for some reason miss the bus
after school has to go to the bathroom the bus drives
off without her. It’s going to be a huge burden
for me to come and get her as I commute by bus
and don’t have a vehicle. So if you know I’m just praying
that someone’s willing to stay at the school with her until
I can get there because I know it will eventually happen it may
not be a regular occurrence. So and there and it makes me and
I think other parents wonder why you selected the area you did.
There are other areas that are way closer to loyal heights.
It would actually make sense for them to go there.
I do realize that the district is facing many challenges but
I truly believe that if you partner
with the community that your decisions affect to at least
provide input into the change the community would be more apt
to be on board with the decision if they were able to be a part
of the decision making. Thank you.
Peters: Thank You. Osenar: Hi my name is Alice
in Osenar and I also would like to address the issue of the area
1:27 and being moved from Whittier to loyal heights.
Um. like others here I’m concerned
about this decision and feel strongly that it is one
the school board should reconsider.
I have been a Whittier parent for six years for the last six
years and with two first graders I have several more years
of elementary school left. I have found that one
of the most valuable aspects of attending a neighborhood
school is having neighborhood friends.
My kids walk to school almost every morning meeting up
with friends along the way. And my now sixth grade daughter
who also attended Whittier is able to walk to the homes
of most of her friends. This proposed change almost not
only almost doubles the distance to our elementary school
and requires our children to go from crossing two extremely
busy streets, to crossing four of them.
It also isolates our kids from their classmates.
None of the areas adjacent to area 1:27 are designated
as loyal heights. We have North Beach to the west.
We have the islands to the north.
We have Green-Wood to the east and Whittier to the south.
And when you couple this fact with the recommendation to not
provide transportation or to allow sibling grandfathering
it becomes more and more likely that our kids will not have
neighborhood classmates. In addition to my concerns
specific to area 1:27 I would like to share some concerns
about implementation and timing in general.
I find it incredibly frustrating that despite this change being
approved in 2013 we will not be hearing about a final decision
regarding grandfathering until four years later when will be
only months away from school choice deadline unless
it’s a year away from implementation.
While I can appreciate the complexity of the boundary
issues in a city that is growing as fast as Seattle the school
board should also consider the complexity of the lives of
the families it serves. As things stand now you’re not
leaving that’s adequate time to fully understand and consider
the impacts of the decision to grandfather at Whittier or
move to loyal heights. As you look to implement
additional boundary changes. I would strongly urge
you to provide more time for families to plan
for the impact of your decisions. Thank you. Stahl: Hello board. My name
is Taylor Stahl and I’m here to advocate for sibling
grandfathering and continuation of transportation
for grandfatherd students in the Whittier loyal Heights
boundary change. I’m the father of an enrolled
Whittier student and a post change future enrollee.
Our family moved to Seattle in 2013 and had no voice
in this decision at the time that it was made.
We purchased a home in the home in triangle in part due to our
access to Whittier. With this change
that is a significant chance that our youngest will not be
admitted to Whittier via school choice and will be forced
to attend loyal heights. Unfortunately this will force
our family into a position of pulling our oldest daughter
out of Whittier even if both are able to attend Whittier.
We won’t have the transportation services that we currently rely
on to get our kids to and from school every day.
These impacts reduce and maybe wipe out the value
of grandfathering to begin with for families like ours.
I applaud your interest in minimizing the impact
of this change to families but the current plan fails to do so
for families like mine who have a high likelihood of being
impacted in exactly the way you profess to want to avoid
a real solution to limiting family impact his 100 percent
sibling grandfathering and continuance
of transportation for all grandfathered students.
These measures minimize the impact to existing school
communities and allow families entering the school system
to plan for a future in their assigned attendance area
including assurance that their children will be able to attend
the same schools and that the city will provide
transportation options that meet their needs.
By moving forward without sibling grandfathering
and transportation. Making a decision based
on antiquated data which results in inadequate access to services
reduced walkability as loyal heart Heights is more distant
for many families no cost effective transportation
for families and failing to minimize disruption
to impacted students missing on 5 of your 8
guiding principles. I ask you now to adhere to your
final guiding principle. Be responsive to family input.
Provide for 100 percent sibling grandfathering for enrolled
families and continuation of transportation services
for all. Peters: Thank you.. Shek: Now we will have
Simon Knaphus, followed by Abraham Taylor
followed by Brian Terry and Robin Schwartz. Speaker 72: Try again. Hi my name is Simon Knaphus
and I’m a member of the racial equity in HCC team. I have
a first grader at Thurgood Marshall in the HCC
program and a sixth grader at Mercer international
Middle School in the advanced
learning program. I’m here to join the chorus
of voices that are expressing outrage at how
disproportionately white the advance planning programs
are in Seattle Public Schools. They don’t just reflect
the institutional racism that we find everywhere Seattle is doing
worse than our neighboring districts.
Institutional racism can be so frustrating because so often we
look at it and say there’s nothing that I can do but this
is a case where you all have the exciting opportunity
to actually do something to address institutional racism
and to create institutional equity. I encourage you to please take
the clear concrete steps that have been outlined
by the racial equity and HCC program. Now is the time
to implement them. And also please stop accepting
private test results for non-disabled students
who are trying to access advanced learning programs.
My first grader Yaffa Aqui is one of only two black
children in his class at the school that is ironically
named after the highly capable black hero who argued Brown
versus the Board of Education. When I decided he would go
to Thurgood Marshall which was a very
difficult decision. I told him that there
was supposed to be more black kids in his class
and that the school district knows that it’s a problem that
his classmates have been overlooked.
I told him that you’re working hard to find his other
black classmates. Please do thank you. Taylor: Thank you. While the whole school board
of directors and superintendent. My name is Abraham Taylor
and I’m here to talk tonight about the labor dispute between
Teamsters Local 174 and 1st student you’re a subcontractor
for student transportation. The dispute has reached
a boiling point and this group is on the brink of a strike that
would create havoc for Seattle families.
None of us want that to happen and so we are asking for help
in resolving this situation as quickly as possible.
First student has not bargained in good faith
with these drivers. They made promises last year
that once they were able to get a new contract with the district
they would be able to address our members very real concerns
about affordable health care and retirement.
Now that a year has passed and first student was able
to get contracts settled with the drivers and with the school
district they came back to the bargaining table without
a single penny more than what they had been offering up
until now. They had a year and they came up
with nothing. Health care is not affordable
for these drivers. Out of 400 of them only 26
of them have signed up for the plan that the company
has offered and the new plans the first student brought
to the bargaining table or even worse. To be clear
the vast majority of the people that transport our most precious
cargo our children do not have quality affordable
health insurance. First student has committed
multiple violations of the National Labor Relations
Act while attempting to bargain this contract.
We have filed several charges within the NLRB and even just
today a new trial was filed because first student has been
attempting to intimidate our members an illegal act under
the law. You the board members have
a responsibility in this situation.
This is your contractor you hired them. They are,
they are treating a union in a unionized work force
this way and it won’t continue. You can look at these drivers
and say I’m not your employer. I can’t do anything about
this but that is an abdication of responsibility that will not.
We will not accept you can do something about
this and you need to thank you for your time.
Shek: Brian Terry. Terry: Good evening.
In our district a white student is 20 times more likely than
a black student to qualify for HCC. Thanks to universal testing,
we now know why. If we were to test a typical
sample of 600 white second graders, by
my calculations, more than 80 of them would be identified
as highly capable. However when we tested 600 black
second graders at underprivileged schools only six
of them were identified as highly capable. This is why HCC is segregated. Our current unification process
is heavily biased towards privileged students.
State law and district policy mandates that we identify
and support highly capable students across all demographics
to do this. We must change our
identification process to remove extreme bias towards
privileged students. Universal test results show us
the impact of privilege on test scores. We can account
for this and look for other ways to identify underprivileged
highly capable students. This will produce a much more
diverse cohort of highly capable students to meet their more
diverse needs will require changes to the service model.
This is the only way we can desegregate HCC remove bias from
the identification process and adapt the service model
to meet the needs of all highly capable students.
Thank you. Peters: Thank you. Shek: Next up we have
Robin Schwartz followed by Cynthia Kniffin,
and Valerie Cooper. Schwartz: I thank you.
I’m Robin Schwartz PTA co-president a Concord
international elementary school. I’m here today to talk about
the kindergartens at Concord which are
unacceptably overcrowded. We are a title one school.
Last year 80 percent of our kids qualified for free
and reduced lunch. Sixty percent of our kids
were English language learners and 70 percent were children
of color. We are the opportunity gap
this year three kindergartens have been condensed into two
with 25 and 26 kids per class according to state initiative 13
51 class size for high poverty schools like Concord.
It’s 15 kids. We are on our way to double
these numbers. Our teachers are overwhelmed
and overburdened and our kids are not being served.
I have e-mailed and called everyone I can think
of the answer continues to be Concord admin is in charge
of allocating teachers. I am beginning to think that
what we are asking for is unreasonable
that the resources do not exist and that maybe I should focus my
energy elsewhere. But ethically I can’t just
decide to let this go and neither should you.
We need help at Concord these 51 kids and their two teachers are
at the wrong end of an unjust system.
SPS has made closing the opportunity gap a priority.
If we do not find a third teacher these kids most of whom
are children of color most of whom live in poverty and most
of whom begin the year at an academic disadvantage
compared to their white middle class peers will end
kindergarten and begin first grade at an even greater
disadvantage if we continue with these numbers.
I can guarantee you that these kids will not be where they
should be and could be by June. If I sit down and stop agitating
and if SPS refuses to find the funds to assist us then we
are all complicit in the system that creates and sustains
the opportunity gap. I am asking everyone
on the board and in this room to take action tonight towards
a solution to this urgent and an equitable situation.
Thank you. Peters: Thank you. Kniffin: Good evening. My name is Cindy Kniffin.
I’m the parent of a second grader at Hawthorne Elementary
and a teacher in the Highland school district.
I’m here to ask you to act now for greater racial equity in sps
advanced learning programs because I believe it is a social
justice issue. In my work as an ELL teacher.
I’ve consistently seen students who come into school with a home
language other than English perform at a higher academic
level than their monolingual peers.
Once they’ve acquired enough English to be
proficient bilinguals. However many of these bright
incredibly capable ell students are excluded from high cap
programs because of barriers such as limited parent
availability and biased language dependent tests.
Seattle Public School says it is committed to closing
the opportunity gap. I applaud you for your recent
efforts to extend universal testing to all Title 1 and high
population schools and for translating the referral
forms into multiple languages. I urge you to continue the work
of removing barriers to the high camp program by one;
extending universal testing to every second grader
in the district two; conducting all follow up testing
during the school day. Highline and many other
districts do this with minimal impact on school schedule and 3:
using a test such as the Naglieri non-verbal
abilities test which provides unbiased scoring regardless
of student’s primary language socioeconomic status or
educational history. Recently as I’ve examined
the biases I’ve carried with me from childhood I realize
that many simply came from my lack of exposure to people
of color and of diverse language groups.
My daughter has the privilege of being educated in Hawthorn’s
diverse school community and she doesn’t think
to question that individuals of any racial or language group
could be in any position that she is a white middle class
child could be. She sees it every day
in her school. For the sake of our
collective future. I ask you to make this a reality
and SPS advanced learning program as well. Thank you.
Peters: Thank you. Shek: After Valerie Cooper we
will have Sara Coulter followed by Jorji Knickrehm
and Kate Poux. Speaker 78: Hi. in front of you
you have enrollment data from the McClure cluster.
There are currently about 980 students in the kindergarten one
and two grade levels at our K 5 elementary schools.
That is approximately nine hundred and eighty kids
and three grade bands. All of those kids are going
to McClure which holds 600 students.
That would require an attrition rate of 38 percent.
Recent recent attrition to middle school has been
approximately 20 percent. I did a survey of about 300
families and our rates of estimation showed about 15
to 20 percent attrition rate. If you recall has projections
routinely show an additional 20 students at McLure middle school
by 2020. If this doesnt show
immediate need. I dont know what does.
So on to Fort Lawton. SPS does in fact qualify through
the Department of Education for athletic field environmental
education maintenance facilities,
and the hope for funds for an eventual school at
the site. future student growth is a valid
indicator of immediate need. We do not yet know if the city
will collaborate with SPS. Word is is that the city now has
an immediate deadline that will not allow any changes.
This seems questionable and at the very least should have been
communicated to the district as a sign of respect. Also why does adding a school
use delay that EIS process substantially?
It requires several sentences about a description about what
is required. If the city is purposely denying
the school board the opportunity to collaborate.
We have several questions in front of us. I would not
leave the hope of this project without an extremely vetted
assurance for another project. The question of 40 acres
and a process starting in 2018 is a pipe dream and something
that we don’t know has any teeth. But
if the if the city is going to go against their own school
board and their overwhelming community feedback we must ask
the question. I often receive as is this how
our city functions? Thank you. Peters: Thank you.
Shek: Sarah?. Jorji? Knickrehm: Good evening school
board members I am here as a representative
of the racial equity in HCC team and as a parent of a child in
the HCC program to talk about the need for greater racial
equity in our advanced learning programs.
I am grateful that Seattle Public Schools has
a strong program for advanced learners.
It fulfills an important need but it isn’t right to have
a program that doesn’t provide services to everyone equally.
We only knew about HCC because we talked with other parents at
the kindergarten playground. The experienced parents told me
about how the testing worked about where to find
the application and that I had to be sure to submit
it by a certain date. I looked around and wondered why
aren’t the kids simply tested at school where every kid
could be tested. I think it would help increase
equity if we created an HCC presence in schools so
that families of color learn about and gain trust
in the program. And if kids are tested at their
own school or as part of another test that they’re already taking
under-represented families would more easily find their way
to HCC. Also if the district holds
the line against families with means by saying private
test results are not allowed. It could balance the playing
field and mitigate the overrepresentation of white
families in the program. Thank you for supporting equity
in the HCC program. Peters: Thank you. Poux: I am a representative of
the racial equity in advanced learning and HCC team as well
and a parent of two children and HCC and a teacher
in Seattle Public Schools. I’m here to implore you to make
equitable access a top priority for the program review
is planned this year in advanced learning and HCC.
There is great work happening in neighboring districts.
Now is the time to learn from this work and live up
to the promises that we make in equity policy. 0 3 0 0 3 0. Last year Renton’s school
district was in their third year of redesigning their high cap
referral and identification process.
A year of data mining and targeted referrals only
slightly improved numbers of under-represented students
from 9 to 11 percent. So they doubled down on a family
outreach the next year. They crunched achievement data
and invited the top 250 under-represented students
to take the COGAT and they shepherded these
families through with the referral process. They host information nights all
year long. They have a rolling
test schedule. They test students
in their schools. They use only the COGAT screener
to identify second graders in universal testing.
They prepare teachers to manage rigor in diverse classrooms and
they have an exit process when advanced learning is not
serving a student’s needs. They have a sense
of what the numbers should look like. If there
was proportional representation and they use these numbers
to set goals. The burden is on the district
to find students and serve them and not on parents to navigate
complicated hurdles and loopholes or scale
the castle walls. As we say at MLK Elementary
where I teach. Fixing this broken piece
of advanced learning this piece that hinders access
to educational equity the peace that protects privilege
and enforces shocking racial segregation in our schools.
We will undoubtedly learn lessons about trust potential
and community that we could apply in all corners
of our district. Peters: Thank you. Shek: Next up we have
Sabrena Burr followed by Emily McKeon followed
by Natasha Boswell. Burr: Good evening.
This evening I had originally talked originally meant to talk
to you about shared governance and decisions that are made at
our schools that are devoid of conversation with parents
like the food feeding program that weekend backpack program
at Lowell, going to the classroom instead
of being relational putting shame and now them seeing those
backpacks rotted. But there’s two other things
that have been on my heart that we must address because
there are inequities that happened.
Here last school board meeting you guys talked to Wyeth Jesse
to where he was looking for under-represented students
in HCC. and the only answer
he could tell you was Title 1 schools and I want to tell
you that’s unacceptable and I am enraged. gifted students of color are
everywhere look for them and find them. My niece who graduated
from Garfield many years ago I asked her how she got
into HCC. She said I never tested
and the teacher told me I was too smart.
Students didnt know where she came from when she ended up
on the cheerleading team. Where have you been all day.
She hated being isolated being the only African-American
student there. Right now we have her kids
in school who are not testing and who are bored who came
in here reading. But more importantly
is this piece of literature that you guys sent out. This is unacceptable and you owe
all of the public an apology. This went out in first first day
packet and how this was written in.
Who wrote this needs to not write any public things
any more. Right here in the middle under
discipline. What happens if a student breaks
the rule. You have a picture of a very sad
African-American child the message is not very good.
Right. Here you have all the harming
things all the guns and things. We had a kindergarten pair
of African-American students that was outraged. You need
to look at this document you owe the policy the public an apology
and you need to do better on HCC and if Wyeth thinks that is only
a title one schools then maybe you need to really rethink
who’s over that program. Thank you.
Peters: Thank you. McKeon: Emily McKeon and I’m
going to cede my time to John Q.. Speaker 85: HI I want to talk
about open data government transparency and civic activism
in a in a collaborative way. I’m a new parent and Blaine my
son just started in the kindergarten program
and I’m excited to be part of this district. One
of the things that I’m concerned with you know is everyone is the capacity planning issues.
But when I went when I went online and I looked around
for some of the data a lot of the data that underlies sort
of enrollment figures you know projecting five to 10 years out
in the future they’re either missing or it’s in a form
that can’t be easily consumed or it’s something which just as it
is difficult to understand we don’t understand necessarily how
these enrollment figures come about. It’s makes it extremely
difficult for the community to collaborate with you and come
up with innovative solutions. I wanted to make it sort of one
of the other examples I was thinking of today
on the way here is it’s raining right now.
How many kids miss school because of footwear
that isn’t sufficient. You know if we have raúl
absentee dad on a daily basis by school we might be able
to understand a little bit more of that so it’s not just
the capacity planning issues it’s like a lot of these sort
of interesting issues that may be impacted by other factors
other pieces of data that maybe the school district does
not collect. We need the data and I’d
like actually the first act of the new CIO to be publishing
extensive data on capacity planning issues.
You know things like that to make it easier
for us to collaborate with you. Thank you.
Peters: Thank you. Shek: Next up Natasha Boswell
followed by Elosha Adams. Boswell: Hello. Thank you first I wanna say
thank you for listening to us over the past couple of months.
And thank you for unanimously even those with hesitation
and really good questions for voting to request to be
a part of the EIS during the last school board meeting.
I would like to highlight that we have not been asking for
the school to replace low income housing.
We’ve been asking to share the space to learn
that The superintendent claims less than 24 hours later that we
do not qualify is disappointing to say the least. And I also
want to add that Magnolia does not only consist of rich
white families. I am a teacher. My husband is a black
firefighter and we have biracial children.
This is not a NIMBY issue for us for our family and for many
others like us that currently live in the inner bay
Magnolia area. The idea that we do not qualify
is something that weve been countering for months
and as a community we would like to push for accurate enrollment
planning. Sorry — Im sick and in McClure,
at McClure currently where I also teach our eighth
grade class. We have 165 students
in the kindergarten class within the McClure boundary area
has 317 in first grade. There’s 323 in second grade
there’s 333 Additionally our registar at McClure
has a substitute call all the potential families
throughout the summer to find out the numbers instead
of depending on current
enrollment projections. We will continue to fight for
this land and we appreciate your assistance and we request we’d
like to request for an updated
enrollment system. Thank you. Peters: Thank you. Adams: My name is Elosha Adams.
I am a fifth grader at Lawton elementary.
First of all I would like to thank the board
for voting unanimously to acquire.
Part of the land at Fort London. It is a great decision.
However there is still a lot of work to be done.
Please address capacity issues productively and please be
active in collaborating with the city for Growth
planning please grandfather siblings because we know
that boundary changes are coming to Magnolia and Queen Anne
and please continue to listen to family input. Thank you.
Peters: Thank you. Shek: This concludes up
for public testimony this evening. Peters: Thank you everybody
for coming out this evening. So now I will turn over.
Turn the mikes over to my colleagues and see if any
directors would like to speak who haven’t spoken yet.
After that any directors would like to add any comments. Dir Pinkham. Adams: Táˀc kulé-wit Qeˀciyéẁyéẁ
and good evening. Thank you to all our presenters
here that came up and talk and shared your views.
And that’s one thing that I learned as being part of
the board here and actually when I was running for the board is
that yes your voice counts. And please continue to come here
and share your concerns and also your praise of what we are doing
here it is appreciated. I just want to let you know we
are listening and listen and try to address all these issues
that are coming up you know as far as boundary issues
and classroom sizes budget. And you know for that even our
transportation issues I must note that I didn’t I voted no
against the contract because with the bus drivers I thought
we need to find something to him that we need health care for all
our That work to help our students to attend schools.
You know it’s to me it’s about more equity you know we got some
people having it and others not. We need to see what we can do
to make sure everyone has the same affordable
coverage and the best that we can. And I’m not sure
that what we can do as far since we already approved the contract
and how we can help our bus drivers. Highly capable cohorts us for
that Dir Burke kind of Shared, you know know is something do we
get rid of? It ends at the high school level and to continue it?
I too have concerns about where we’re having the system
that test people and then says this these people are above
these others and there are some cultures that no I don’t want
to be put above. I want to be with my community
and help and everyone. We need to find a way
to definitely celebrate the strengths and skills
of our students. There may be some that are good
at reading. Some are good at math.
Some good at art some good at singing in other ways
that everyone has a strength. Everyone I believe is highly
capable and as a person they’re not.
Don’t look at the title ones school’s just
for under-served students. They are all over this district.
And if they are aren’t tested you know what can we do to get
them tested? How much would it cost to test
every student and test this student with the exam or
assessment that it’s equitable that doesn’t favor one group
over over another. These are challenges that we are
facing now and what can we do to be proactive and address
those with your input will find those solutions so continue
to come here and share your thoughts and perspectives.
Again I appreciate it very much. I want also to extend thank yous
to the person listening session that was held that Robert Siegel
staff middle school for our native community Kyle and * came
out there from the school board office here to listen
to the native community up in the north end
and I was in attendance too but more for a community member not
necessarily as representative the board or the district.
But I just sat there and was able to listen to see
what was happening. And even within the north end
those that attended we know that the families in that native
families they had different issues and they would see things
different ways. But hopefully we’ll see
that there is a common ground that we want what’s best
for the students and then what may be best for one family
may not work for the other family.
But if we give our families a choice that’ll help them out
instead of trying to dump. Yes you must go this way or
you can’t go that way. Let’s give our families more of
a choice so that they can serve their children to the best
of their needs. I also want to extend a thank
you or recognize the principals for principal month Erika Ayer
and her crew at Sanislo and also want to think Deeni Fauntleroy
at Northgate elementary and the staff here that helped
address that what an issue that came up here and we got
it resolved. And again family coming up
and sharing their voice and yes we will do our best to take
the action that we can and be aware that it does take time
for us to do some things but we still need to communicate where
we’re at in the process so families are confident in coming
to us for issues because if we don’t respond they’re going
to stop coming. You know why would I go there
and tell them if they’re not going to do anything.
So let’s let them know where we’re at in the process.
Yes you’re heard and we’re addressing it. Thank you to the south shore
students and their presentation. Definitely a joy to listen
that we’re sharing the history of people that that helps other
cultures understand where people are coming from and share
that perspective and not just from their perspective
of the majority tell the story but let the cultures themselves
the people from a certain way tell their own story.
And I think it was powerful for the students to read
that the stolen ones. Thank you. Alisa chin from South Dakota
parents sharing her few thoughts. And also
the student from Chief Sealth talked about the value of having
the debates and mock trials at his school. I must also acknowledge that it
is people’s day that occurred and that remind people
that for me im indigenous every day is not just one day out of
the year. So for me everydays
Indigenous Peoples Day. And for other cultures they are
who they are every day and they got to feel safe
wherever they go to school that they recognize themselves. Pinkham: They see themselves in
the schools and that was definitely an issue
that we talked to at the listening session.
We need to have our students feel safe at the schools
wherever they go that they feel safe about who they are
as a person and individuals and as a community
and a larger society. My next committee meeting will
be this Saturday at Northgate library at 3:30 I won’t have any
lasagna though to provide. Unless you get leftovers to send
right my way. Or [-off camera-for
a price.] OK. So again anyone
that has anything to say doesn’t have to be in my district
to come by the committee meeting to share your thoughts.
I just wanna let you know I am listening.
And then before I sign off on my comments I got to wish my niece
happy birthday. She’ll be turning. I guess I
should say her name or her age. But my niece Brooke Pinkham who
is actually the director of the Indian Law Center at
Seattle University she’ll be celebrating a birthday tomorrow
so wish her Happy Birthday Qeˀciyéẁyéẁ Thank you.
Peters: Thank you. Dir Patu. Patu: First of all I’d
like to say thank you to Alisa Chen from chief
sealth for her presence and also her presentation in letting us
know what’s happening at Sealth. Also want to say thank you so
much to the south shore team that was here to entertain us
with their reading skills and a wonderful story
that actually uplifted a lot of us and hopefully way too. I would like to just go home
again and just read this book all over again and really let
it sink in because it’s a wonderful story and it’s
it’s also very educational in terms of a lot of us
who actually have left our country for many years ago
and forgot some of us forgot what our culture was all about
and this kind of remind me of who I am and what is my purpose
within where I am today and then also continue on to teach my
grandchildren about our culture. Because a lot of our kids have
actually forgotten who they are and not even know
what the language is. So this is a really great
reminder of us of where we came from and how do we as that come
back and remind our students of the wonderful culture
that they’re from and the language
that they learn. I also want to say
congratulations to you to all the principals for this.
I suppose is principals month for all the great work
that you’re doing without you and your leadership our schools
will not move forward the way it is today. There’s a lot
of wonderful things that’s going on with various schools across
our district. And I thank
you for your leadership. I also want to say thank
you to Sanislow for your presentation very much
appreciated and letting us know the great success is happening
at your school as some of us who actually are
from different districts. It’s always wonderful to hear
about what’s going on in various schools in different districts
so we can share the success and we all know that everyone
is moving in the right direction. I also want to say that this
has been quite a very busy week for some of us who are running
for re-election. It’s an overwhelming week
because not only we have to work in that area but also take time
make sure that we don’t that we do our duty as president.
I mean board members and continue on our duties.
So we are working so we’ll be still be updated in terms of
what we’re supposed to do but.. But I just want to say
that serving on Seattle Public School Board is probably one of
the most exciting thing for me as board director because
it gives us has an opportunity to look at education
from a whole perspective and what is it that we can do
as board director to either change or make things better
for families and their children. Even though that some of us
don’t always know what goes on on the other side
of the district. But at the same time being here
and you know sitting up here and listening to all the various
stories and what’s happening in different areas it really
gives us good opportunities for me to know that there’s
great work going on and all of different districts even
though sometimes at night and not go the way we wanted to.
But at same time we’re here and we we listen as board
directors and we want to make sure that all our students
across the district are getting the same opportunity that all
the other kids from the other district are getting.
So thank you for all the work. Thank you for the parents
and community and for your support and both are working
together we can make things happen as we are right now.
And like I said the most important thing is actually
supporting our students to make sure that they are successful.
I also would like to thank some of our students that came night
to talk about what the needs of their schools.
Yes Rainier Beach needs a rennovation and hopefully
that soon will get a renovation for Rainier Beach.
Everywhere I go people tell me what is up with Rainier Beach,
It’s still not rennovated yet. Well we’re still saying rainier
beach hopefully soon will be renovated so that way we can see
a beautiful school next to the lake and people and our
students will be able to be proud of Rainier Beach school
because it’s made it so we will continue to push for renovation
for rainier beach. We don’t know when yet, but at
same time hopefully it’ll be done any time soon.
I also would like to say that highly capable. You know that’s very it’s a very
interesting situation with with that because this is a subject
that has come up many times. And the question I always ask
is why don’t we have a lot of students of color
and highly capable. Because as Serena has brought up we have
a lot of smart kids that are kids of color but they are not
given the opportunity to be part of the highly capable program
because they never tested. I know that for a fact because
I have my own grandchildren have not been tested and they’re
highly capable. So I think that you know
as a district we need to look at those programs that are actually
are beneficial to all kids so that every child in Seattle
public schools no matter what color or ethnic group
they are would have the opportunity to take
advantage of those programs. And as a district we need
to really look at that and be able to make those opportunity
available to all our kids. This is something that has come
up many times with a lot of our parents a lot of our community
and have told us many time what is going on. How come we don’t
have enough kids of color in how capable.
So hopefully this district will listen to what you know what is
it that we’ll be doing in order for us to push that forward so
we can have more students be part of the highly capable
program because we know there’s a lot of students of color
who are qualified for highly capable programs.
Also I want to say I want to thank you to my board
directors who have been there to help support me and encourage
me sometimes you know I as a board director
when you’re running for re-election you get
to the point where you’re down at times. But when you have
people that actually support you they uplift your spirits
and in my view there’s a reason why you’re on this board.
So thank you for those of you who continue to support my
candidacy and support my work and hopefully that I will
continue on to provide opportunities for all your kids.
And that looking for bigger and better things to come. Peters: Thank you. any other- Dir Geary. Geary: Just want to add a couple
comments to our bus drivers to our Whittier families
to everybody who comes with a request that impacts
our transportation. I think you all know that we did
go to the city to ask for more money to get the switch
to the two tiers we have to continue to make it work.
But it’s not easy but it’s not that we’re not thinking about it
and we’re trying to put our resources to the best work
that we can. That makes it fair without
elevating one group over another and trying to meet the needs
of all of our groups. I definitely. The bus driver situation
is an interesting one just so the public understands is that.
The way the contracts set up is that people who work part time
don’t necessarily qualify for health care.
But the reality is for our bus drivers is that because
of the way we schedule them and they can’t work during
the summer they end up working what feels like full time during
the school year and then it’s very difficult.
Then we can’t we don’t have those jobs over the summer.
So when you amortize their time over the whole year they end up
being part time workers under the rules. But you really can sympathize
that these people are working full time and when they’re
working and that they need to have the same assurances that
if they get sick that they’re going to be able to get treated
and get back on the job. So it is not that we don’t
understand this issue but it is it is very it’s very powerful
and I’m sure there are other issues that arise but that is
the one that it really speaks to me and it does not
feel equitable. And then finally I want to think both of our
students from high school came out. Now the young
man who came and made the pitch after hearing about the highly
capable pathways that their school with their debate team
really offers something to our highly capable students.
And you could tell his pride. And so I just want to say that
for our advanced learners which are everywhere we need
to make sure that we are putting the resources to them
that they are our gifts. They are the gifts to our city
every single day that we graduate them and that they take
their hope and their aspirations and we have to make sure
that we’re making giving them every opportunity to a great
education that we give to any child who finds themselves
in a highly capable program. If you look at the distribution
of Advanced Placement offerings throughout the district I think
you will see that that it would be impossible
for a student at some schools to really believe that they are
considered an advanced learner and that needs to change.
And I I won’t support anything that doesn’t make that a reality
for our kids because Mr. Vassar Fontenot deserves to be
considered highly capable because he certainly proved
that test. Thank you. Peters: Director Harris. Harris: I could use some help up
here Mr. General Counsel and assistant
superintendent McEvoy please. Mr. General Counsel
would you yell stop if I step over the line and I will create
an unfair labor practice here? Treat: Certainly. Harris: Thank you sir. My feet are small.
They both fit. When we put out the contract
for our bus services did we not meet at some length, to speak to the issues
of retention of good drivers and benefits?
And did we not give additional points during the RFP process
for that very issue? I can think of two or
three meetings. Treat: Yes I recall the same and
the RFP did speak to those matters. But
as you might recall in the end we only had one proposal so
there wasn’t a competing proposal that might have scored
better in those categories. Harris: Ok. And we had one
proposal because we have no space and no land to park buses.
And that first student has that. So they have us basically over
a barrel is that correct? Treat: That wouldn’t be a legal
term of art. But in one respect —
Harris: We can invent it. Treat: Yes in one respect there
is a challenge here because it’s it’s from my understanding
it’s difficult for other competitors to enter the market
because they need the real estate to park the buses and
that is obviously and in this economy in this city
very expensive. Harris: And can you give us
an up to date status of the vote to strike and where we are today
because I’m seeing and hearing a lot of chatter and a lot
of fear. Treat: Yes let me ask
Peggy McEvoy to provide you with that information. McEvoy: So thank
you for the opportunity to share what I do know I am on a daily
phone call with first student and am talking
with the Teamsters not on a daily basis but
on a regular basis. And what I am hearing
from the Teamsters is that in fact they did take
a strike vote that in fact they had a cooling off period
that cooling off period has expired so they can strike
at any moment. But what I have also been
assured by the Teamsters is that they are wanting to make sure
that they have completed all possible negotiations before
they do strike. And I do know that there
has been proposals requested by the Teamsters and a recently
supplied to the Teamsters from first student. Harris: My last question
it’s been suggested to some from some folks somewhat
vociferously that we are irresponsible because we don’t
have our own buses and bus drivers as our employees do we
have a price tag for that? And how long it’s been since we
had our own bus fleet and bus drivers? And how do we
juxtapose that with the McCleary
missing millions? McEvoy: Well I think between
the deputy superintendent and I we can probably answer
most of those questions. It has been decades since if at
all we’ve — Nielsen: nev- To my knowledge
and I could be wrong so we’re treading on ice here because
we’re going from memory here to my knowledge we’ve never had
a bus fleet in Seattle. And the cost of an average bus
now is about $80000 depending upon what you get sometimes up
to a hundred. And we would need about 350
buses and we would also have to buy a property and make it
into a facility and clearly we don’t have that kind
of resource. So what schools do is they have
a bus fund and they put a bus Levy out in front of the voters
in order to pay for that. And for most districts that do
so the way it’s done isn’t in one big chunk.
You replace the buses and over time. So we would have
to approach that cost in a one shot opportunity which would be
quite expensive. That is why we have never done
the work before. We’ve chosen to spend our money
in a manner that tries to honor our transportation
and the requirements and to your point earlier
I would like to add that yes we have taken time to make it clear
to our vendor that we care deeply about their drivers
and their working conditions. McEvoy: And I would add
that most larger urban districts do not own their own fleet and
that they are in fact contracted out. Peters: Any other comments
and then I guess I’ll close it out with my comments
and thank you all for coming out tonight and bringing
with you all the different issues that we need to be
aware of. Special thanks to our two chief
Sealth students who are here eloquently representing their
school and the various programs that their school offers. See a couple of things I do have
a community meeting coming up and I see that the time
is incorrect. I think I might have misstated
it before it’s going to be. On Sunday the 29th of October
from 3 until 4:30 at the Magnolia library.
And I apologize for not being able to do it on a Saturday with
the libraries in my area were booked on those days. Our internal auditor
Andrew Madina is going to be presenting a white paper at
the Council of Great City Schools conference.
So we’re pretty excited about that and to be a sort
of national leader on this sort of thing and we’re going to ask
Andrew to make a presentation to us afterwards so hopefully we
can do that at a board meeting and everybody can see what we’re
what we’re doing. All right. Regarding that see the advanced
learning and HCC there were some really good ideas tonight
and I know we’ve already received a lot of ideas
from the equity team on this. So talking to staff the other
day and I know we used to have an advisory committee that’s
currently called the HCC advisory committee.
It was before that it was APP advisory committee and I notices
a lot of openings on that committee.
And what was good about it was it had representatives from our
HCC schools district wide. And so I would like to encourage
those who are in the community who would want to be part
of the community to to take a look at being a part
of the advisory committee because we have some big
decisions we have to make in the next couple of years
regarding how we address advanced learning both
logistically pedagogically and then from an equity
standpoint and it be great to hear from voices throughout
the district, on this on these topics. Regarding testing at
the schools, that’s that’s a good idea.
My understanding from staff is we have some capacity issues
that it’s just hard to find the space during the school day
but it’s definitely worth looking into creating more
of an HCC presence in the schools I think that
would be good. There’s a lot of people don’t
even know about the programs you know and don’t know
what it takes. There’s always you know there’s
always some bureaucracy attached to anything that you apply to.
And we have to help more families navigate that. I’d like to encourage all of you
who care about these issues to pay attention to the board
calendar because we recently just had a work session
on advanced learning and a program evaluation and we
great to have you know folks show up for those meetings and
it’s fun where you sit in the audience and you get
to hear what we’re doing but we’re just hashing out some
things right there. And it can be very
very informative. So please pay attention
to the calendar. For those sorts of meetings
and then regarding testing kids in title one my understanding
is we’re not just testing title one kids in title one schools
we’re going beyond that because we know we’ve got kids
throughout our schools and we also have kids who qualify
for title one services who aren’t necessarily
in a title 1 designated school. So we have already heard that
that would be too narrow a focus and what we are focusing
beyond that. And then I think that’s about it. I also want
to say as you all may have heard that we are launching our
superintendent search that director Nyland’s contract
is completed at the end of June of next year. And we’re very
excited about the prospect of being able to reach out to
the community for the first time in six years and ask what it is.
it you would like in leadership here in the Seattle
School District. So I encourage people to start
thinking about that and start giving us feedback on what sort
of Superintendent we should be looking for.
I understand that in the past there have been some people have
not been super happy with the process and possibly
even the results this is in the past and we want
to do things a lot differently. We want to find somebody
who really is tuned in and who can take us forward
and build on the work that Dr. and Nyland and staff
and the board is currently doing.
And so it’s an exciting time and we’re trying to do things in
an organized planned manner so we don’t have to choose
a district leader in a time of crisis and duress
which is too often has been the case in recent years.
So thank you all in advance for your input on that very
important topic. And at this point I’d like to
have the board take a recess for 15 minutes and then we’ll
resume at. Looks like about five minutes
to seven for the next portion of our agenda. Thank you.