Ann Dornfeld

Reporter

Ann Dornfeld is a reporter at KUOW. She should have realized radio was in her future when, growing up in Seattle, she went to KUBE 93 after school one day to interview DJ Chet Buchanan. She claimed it was for a school assignment. She was actually just curious.

Ann went on to spin hip-hop records and host a public affairs show at her college radio station. On a month-long trip to Anchorage, she volunteered at Alaska Public Radio Network. She expected to be put to work filing papers. Instead, APRN gave her a mic and told her to file stories. She stayed all summer and learned the art of radio reporting. An official internship at APRN followed, and another at KUOW. She then worked at KLCC Public Radio in Eugene, Oregon as the Morning Edition host and reporter.

Ann returned to Seattle and worked as a roving freelance reporter, focusing on environmental issues for KUOW and national shows including Morning Edition, All Things Considered, The Environment Report and Marketplace. She has reported on a rare bioluminescent bay in Puerto Rico, penguin habitat loss in South Africa, mangrove destruction in the US Virgin Islands, coral reef conservation in Bonaire and invasive lionfish in the Bahamas. She covered a major earthquake in Sumatra, Indonesia, for NPR News and The World.

Ann has won awards for her reporting from the Associated Press and Public Radio News Directors Incorporated. She received an Investigative Reporting award from the Education Writers Association for her 2010 KUOW story about recess inequalities for poor children in Seattle Public Schools.

In her spare time, Ann enjoys underwater photography while diving balmy Puget Sound. Her favorite marine invertebrate is a nudibranch. Her favorite nudibranch is a Cockerell's dorid (Laila cockerelli).

Pages

Crime
5:11 pm
Mon June 3, 2013

Seattle Police Advise Vigilance After Three Apparent Child-Snatching Attempts in 24 Hours

Seattle Police are warning parents to keep their young children within sight after a rash of apparent kidnapping attempts involving 3- and 4-year-old boys.

The latest incident happened Monday morning outside Coe Elementary School in Seattle’s Queen Anne neighborhood. Seattle Police spokeswoman Renee Witt says a woman told police she had left her 4-year-old son inside her parked car while she walked her daughter to the school.

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Financial Oversight
5:48 pm
Tue May 28, 2013

State Audit Finds District Misspent Dropout-Prevention Money

A state audit released today found that Seattle Public Schools misspent $483,862 in federal grant money meant to improve graduation rates. District officials agree with the finding, but say the money did go to useful dropout prevention programs.

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Education Funding
10:23 pm
Thu May 23, 2013

Highline District Offers Free Full-Day Kindergarten To All Students

A local kindergartener hard at work.
Ann Dornfeld KUOW

Highline School District plans to offer free, full-day kindergarten to all students next school year.

Currently, half-day kindergarten is the norm: two and a half hours a day. Most Washington parents have to pay tuition if they want their kids in full-day kindergarten.

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Financial Oversight
6:20 pm
Wed May 22, 2013

State Auditors Find Seattle Schools Still Needs Tighter Internal Controls

After years of sloppy bookkeeping and at times lax financial oversight, Seattle Public Schools has improved its internal financial controls, but needs to strengthen them further, auditors from the Washington State Auditor's Office told the school board in a special meeting Wednesday.

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School Board Race
5:12 pm
Mon May 20, 2013

Two Seattle School Board Seats Up For Grabs In Primary

The current Seattle School Board
Seattle Public Schools

Six candidates are vying for two Seattle School Board seats in the August 6 primary election.

In Director District 5, which includes Capitol Hill, the Central Area, Beacon Hill and downtown, Kay Smith-Blum is stepping down from her board seat after one term.

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Native American Education
9:01 am
Thu May 16, 2013

District Plan To Move Indian Heritage School Angers Native Community

A standing-room only crowd at the May 15 Seattle School Board meeting protested the proposed move of the Indian Heritage program to Northgate Mall.
KUOW photo/Ann Dornfeld

The latest Seattle School District plan to move the American Indian Heritage program to Northgate Mall has angered many in the Native American community.

They rallied at Wednesday night's school board meeting to protest the move, calling it just the district's latest step toward dismantling Indian Heritage.

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Standardized Testing
6:00 pm
Mon May 13, 2013

Seattle Schools Chief Scales Back Controversial MAP Test

COCOEN daily photos Flickr

The standardized test that inspired boycotts by teachers across Seattle School District will be scaled back next school year.

In a letter to district staff today, Superintendent Jose Banda announced that the Measures of Academic Progress test will still be required in kindergarten though eighth grade, but it will be optional at the high school level.

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Violent Crime
6:34 pm
Mon April 22, 2013

Police: Domestic Violence Started Mass Shooting In Federal Way

Federal Way Chief of Police Brian J. Wilson speaks to reporters at a news conference on Monday, Apr. 22, 2013.
KUOW Photo/Ann Dornfeld

Police say a quadruple murder in Federal Way Sunday night started as a domestic violence incident.

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High School Exit Exams
12:16 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

New Wash. Math Requirement May Delay Graduation For 3,730 High School Seniors

Math is the only state standard standing in the way of graduation for 3,730 high school seniors.
Lou FCD Flickr

Two months before high school commencement, 9,083 seniors still haven’t passed Washington state’s new math graduation requirement.

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Schools Financial Scandal
3:01 pm
Mon April 8, 2013

Former Seattle Schools Official Silas Potter Pleads Guilty To Theft

Silas Potter and his attorney Seth Conant in King County Superior Court December 7, 2012.
KUOW Photo/Ann Dornfeld

After his re-arrest on Saturday, former Seattle Public Schools official Silas Potter pleaded guilty Monday to 36 counts of theft for directing $168,275 in school district funds to a dummy company he controlled.

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Creative Accounting
6:00 am
Thu April 4, 2013

Many Wash. Districts Have Been Exaggerating Graduation Rates

Graduation rate calculations, long based on districts' subjective determinations, will now be standardized nationwide.
Flickr/draggin

In 2011, the Washington Association of School Administrators named Mary Alice Heuschel Superintendent of the Year. In a promotional video for the award, Heuschel described how she helped transform the Renton School District in her five years as superintendent.

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Early Learning
4:54 pm
Wed April 3, 2013

Two Seattle Head Start Programs Deemed Low-Quality, Lose Funding

The United Indians of All Tribes Foundation Head Start program, one of two Washington programs to lose federal funding, is located at the Daybreak Star Indian Cultural Center in Seattle's Discovery Park.
brewbooks Flickr

  Two Seattle Head Start programs have lost their federal funding after they failed to meet quality standards. It's the first round of contract terminations in the new push by the Obama administration to improve the early learning programs for low-income kids.

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Education Reform
7:35 am
Wed April 3, 2013

12 Wash. Districts File To Become Charter School Authorizers

derekbruff Flickr

Twelve Washington school districts have formally announced they’ll apply to become charter school authorizers. Bellevue, Highline, Kent, Tacoma, Spokane and Port Townsend are among the districts seeking the power to approve charter school applications in their regions. Those districts met the State Board of Education's April 1 deadline for notices of intent to apply for authorizer status.

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Theft Trial
5:11 pm
Fri March 29, 2013

Arrest Warrant Issued For Former Seattle Schools Official Silas Potter

David A. Johnson stands between defense attorneys at a pretrial hearing where co-defendant Silas Potter failed to appear.
Ann Dornfeld

Former Seattle Public Schools official Silas Potter has disappeared, just weeks before his trial was to begin for his alleged theft of a quarter-million dollars from the district.

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Standardized Testing
4:58 pm
Fri March 29, 2013

District Says Teachers Who Boycotted Test Won’t Be Punished

The superintendent of Seattle Public Schools said no teachers will be disciplined for refusing to give students the district-wide Measures of Academic Progress test. The district got international attention after dozens of teachers at several schools boycotted the test this winter, calling it a waste of time and money.

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