Public Schools

To Concerned Community Members -

Now that we have had nearly two weeks to digest the School Board's vote to discontinue the Cooper Program we are all trying to figure out what is next. Law suit? Help with the transition? Stay in denial that the Seattle School Board could vote yes for such a blatantly racist and classist recommendation?

I am personally choosing to focus on putting pressure on the district to provide for the kids who's lives they are disrupting. We need to anticipate that these kids are going to be going through the grieving process of loosing their school and being separated from their friends. With this in mind we need to demand from the district that they provide us with extra counseling support for our students. They have created this mess now they better be ready to supply us with extra resources to be able to continue to teach, parent and have the kids learning to the best of their ability through these trying times.

02/13/2009

I have been a subscriber to the West Seattle Herald for the last year. I also read The West Seattle Blog.

Your points offered me food for thought - what is the difference between a local paper and a local blog? The answer is clear: a blog
posts news in real time, whereas a paper posts (less) news a week later.

Unfortunately, your paper is at a huge disadvantage. Certainly, some blogs (my personal blog included) are primarily nonsense and
ramblings, but this is not the case of the West Seattle Blog. On the WSB I find real time news on relevant topics. I was grateful for the
school reporting that you disdain, and read it with interest.

I appreciate the opportunity to learn more, to research the links given...or to ingnore and keep reading another topic when I am no
longer interested.

I also appreciate the fact that I don't throw anything away (or recycle it) when I'm done reading the blog, unlike your paper.

The only thing missing from the West Seattle Blog is columns written on topics like bicycling. Still, a small column is not worth paying
for.

02/13/2009

West Seattle and Chief Sealth high schools represented West Seattle Feb. 6 night in the Metro League Championships, placing in the medals three times and sending two gymnasts on to the District competition held at Sammamish High School on Valentine's Day.

West Seattle and Sealth, along with Center School, combined to form one team representing all three schools under the coaching of Echo Balliett-Legge and Cheryl Lee.

While each school was scored separately the gymnasts supported and encouraged each other within the team as if there was no inter-competition. Following a similar mind- set, West Seattle Captain Lisa Broadstone said "I thought our team did very well in the meet today..." The show of camaraderie and team effort in the representation of the West Seattle area was exhilarating- two schools that are for all intents and purposes set rivals came together to represent the community they share.

02/13/2009

Students at Loyal Heights Elementary in Ballard are performing the opera "Siegfried and the Ring of Fire" Feb. 13 in collaboration with staff, singers and musicians from the Seattle Opera.

The fourth and fifth-grade performers worked with the Seattle Opera as part of an Artist in Residence program for the week leading up to the performance but had been practicing their parts for nearly a month.

"Siegfried and the Ring of Fire" was written by Jon Dean, Seattle Opera's education artistic administrator.

02/12/2009
Loyal Heights Opera Photo 9.JPG
Photo credit: 
Michael Harthorne

OPERA FOR A NEW GENERATION: Fourth and fifth-graders at Loyal Heights Elementary participate in "Siegfried and the Ring of Fire" with artists and staff from the Seattle Opera.

West Seattle is now home to two newly certified international education programs at Concord Elementary School and Denny Middle School.

Beginning in September 2009, the current curriculum at Denny will be expanded to include a dual-language program. Existing courses will also be altered to include a global perspective.

“It will be a great fit for all of our kids,” said Jeff Clark, principal at Denny Middle School. “Every child can benefit from a global perspective.”

Spanish will be Denny’s target language which they will teach in three ways: one format for students new to the language, another for native speakers that may not be able to read and write in Spanish and a third for bilingual students. The school will also continue to offer Mandarin language classes and may offer Arabic in the future.

Concord Elementary already has a successful dual immersion Spanish program for Kindergarten and first grade. Dr. Norma Zavala, a native Spanish speaker was appointed as Concord principal for the fall of 2009 and will expand Scott’s popular program.

02/12/2009
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Photo credit: 
Rose Egge

A student studies math at Concord Elementary in the school’s Spanish language immersion program.

The West Seattle Wildcats’ Senior Night was one to be proud of, they came into the game fired up and ready to go, having already lost to the Bainbridge Spartans once this year, they refused to let it happen again.

The Wildcats came out of the gates at full force, maintaining their lead throughout the game. For the first three quarters the Wildcats slowly pulled ahead; widening the gap with a steady relentlessness. Until the fourth quarter when they seemed to lose their focus, giving the Spartans a chance to comeback, to make it an; out of your seat, scream and shout, end to the game. But, in the end the Wildcats pulled through to win it over Bainbridge.

02/12/2009

Ernie Seevers has been appointed Sanislo Elementary School's new principlal for the 2009-2010 school year.

Seevers, an educator with 25 years experience, is currently in his fifth year as principal at AS #1, an alternative K-8 in Pinehurst.

Having worked with Seattle Public Schools for 15 years, Seevers has also been an educator in the Lake Washington and Tacoma school districts, teaching middle and high school math and science.

Seevers has a bachelor of science in middle school education with a concentration in math from North Georgia State College and a master's degree from Antioch University.

The principal announcements, which include nine others and were made by Superintendent Maria L. Goodloe-Johnson and Chief Academic Officer Carla Santorno, are a direct or indirect result of the capacity management process, according to the district.

On Jan. 29, the Seattle School Board approved the final recommendations for capacity management, which closed several schools, including the Cooper Elementary program here.

The principal appointments will become effective July 1, 2009 and additional appointments will be announced in the coming months.

02/11/2009

Along with 300 others, I was bewitched last Friday night by a small woman with a giant presence in the unlikely setting of the Adams Elementary School cafeteria. The author Julia Alvarez can work as much magic in person as her beloved character Tia Lola. For unrushed hours she was Tia Julia to all.

I cannot imagine another author, especially one as celebrated as Julia Alvarez, talking to cafeteria crowded with all ages, admiring each piece of artwork inspired by their work and then interacting with an hour long line of children clutching a paperback edition of her work to be signed with a personal message. Julia Alvarez clearly loves people, especially children. A purple Mexican head dress woven into her dark hair the Latina writer engaged with everyone in the packed room and seemingly endless line.

02/11/2009
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Photo credit: 
Peggy Sturdivant

Author Julia Alvarez and Aidan Jereczek, Adams Elementary 2nd grader. Aidan offered is parrot pinata to Ms. Alvarez, inspired by the parrot in her book.

The message to Alki Elementary School children at Bar-S Playfield Wednesday morni