Update: APP is to move to Lincoln for 2011-2012.
I Posted the information below last week as a response to some of the information on the Mayor’s visit.
For copies of the presentation referenced below and the spreadsheet go to:
http://district.seattleschools.org/modules/cms/pages.phtml?sThis is the school board page, scroll down, click on 2010-2011 agendas, then go to the June 29, 2011 work session, open the agenda, and from the agenda you can access the documents.
I was hoping to get picture to go with this. But, I am sure that there will further opportunities for more informational articles with pictures. Also by commenting here I feel less responsible to ensure that there won’t be questions about what I mean. Ask away.This post will mainly address the Central Area elementary issues with a brief summary of how other areas look. Nova has been told that it is 85% certain that they will return to Mann in 2012. I asked the facilities people about the lease there, and they indicated that it wouldn’t be a problem. I also inquired about the TT Minor Lease. So far the information I have received indicates a large penalty was written into that lease if the District were to reclaim it before 2015. Yes, they can get it back earlier than 2017, or even before 2015, but there is penalty if it is before 2015. (Help on getting the exact details would be greatly appreciated.) I asked about a penalty regarding reopening Sand Point, and maybe they paid a penalty there too, but could the people there could not remember how much it was. Getting the facts on these could prove time consuming. However, I am going to try to get some clarity on the meaning of the state RCW.
By 2015-16 the area is projected to have 530 more elementary age students than the current available space would accommodate in the area. This does not account for APP changes at Lowell (a long discussion here: http://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=28765366&postID=7911). Madrona K-8 is projected to be under enrolled in both the K-5 and 6-8 areas while all the other schools such as Leschi and McGilvra are projected to be more than 120% over enrolled. Stevens is projected at capacity until 2014 and still not over 120%. Functional capacity seems to change from time to time. The preliminary current capacity estimates are on a spreadsheet that was handed out at the Capacity Management work session but not available electronically. Gatzert is projected to be over enrolled by 146% by 2015.
Kay recommended that the staff begin engaging with “the group of parents in area 4, that group that is between Union and Cherry and is clearly south of Madison.” Madrona would probably be a more logical school to capture the some of the too-many students from McGilvra and Leschi. Many students there live closer to Madrona and those two schools have a greater and more immediate problem with projected over enrollment. McGilvra’s problem begins in 2012 and climbs quickly to more than 120%. Still should families and communities have to readjust so often?
The only areas without similar issues (The spreadsheet listed schools by middle school service areas.) are: McClure with a projected enrollment of -65, Hamilton with +46, and Whitman with +97. The other areas are projected to be over enrolled as follows: Madison at 393, Mercer at 683, Washington 530, Eckstein 236, Denny 879, Aki Kurose 456. The preliminary spreadsheet that was handed out has more detail and the updated material from the agenda give some ideas have some ideas.
Thanks to McGinn for putting Seattle Weekly in its place. Many of us have complained about the Seattle Weekly promoting prostitution. The mayor’s voice is one step at pointing attention to the Seattle Weekly’s huge profit from illicit activity. So many of the knee jerk pro debachery seattlites will put down this thread and put down the Mayor’s effort, however, the ball has moved forward and SW cannot deny their pimpery for much longer.
that if the neighborhood school plan is really so important to the district, why did so many kids, in the Madrona reference area, get assigned to McGilvra? Makes no sense. Madrona is underenrolled. Fill it with neighbor kids. What the district will do now is fill it with kids from all over the city. This does not make a good, strong neighborhood school. Once again, it seems SPS has a different mission than what they are telling everyone. Why on earth wouldnt every single kid, in the Madrona ref. area, get assigned Madrona, especially considering the overcrowding in these other schools.
This is so ridiculous and maddening. I have a kindergartner starting in Fall 2012 and I hate that I have to tell him “I don’t know,” when he asks me which school he is going to be going to. Right now we’re (barely) in the Stevens area, but if “Area 4” gets bumped around again, then what? Of course the school closest to us (T.T. Minor) is closed.
Our other option, APP at Lowell, if Stevens was too crowded and/or Madrona wasn’t performing as we’d wish when he starts school, is now moving to Wallingford, so that idea is out too. I’m frustrated and wish I had more faith in SPS, but at this point I just don’t.
For a city with such a highly educated and progressive population, the state of our schools is incomprehensible to me. Why is this so tough? We have better performing schools and alternatives in some of the roughest Northeast cities. But here in the coddled NW we can’t get an inner city school to teach kids the basics. Guess that is why we are the most childless city in the nation. Looks like I’ll be joining the ranks of the “moved to the suburbs for the schools” pretty soon too. Never lived nor ever expected to live in the suburbs before, so wish me luck.
I truly appreciate that you are involved and keeping us updated.
School Board member Kay Smith-Blum will be hosting a Community Meeting on Saturday, August 27 from 10:00-11:30am at the Douglass Truth Library, 2300 E. Yesler St. This is from her invitation: “I look forward to meeting you and hearing about your concerns for the upcoming school year. All are welcome!”
As for Area 4 parents, I would advise that you advocate for your current assignment to Stevens if you like it, at least until 2015. If there is more room at Lowell it will pretty much accommodate any over crowding at Stevens until that time. Lowell is very convenient to the immediate area around Stevens. There are more immediate issues in McGilvra and Leschi assignment areas. Supposedly, the soonest they can get TT Minor back without paying a penalty (They can get it back sooner.) is 2015, which is part of one of the future proposals. In the meantime, Area 4 finds Stevens to be at least as convenient, if not more so, than Lowell. Room in the Madrona assignment area will be needed for Leschi and McGilvra soon. And, then there is the issue of making sure that all these programs are desirable for all families and that families embrace their neighborhood school assignment.
Thanks, Joanna. I hope to make it and see you there.