Seattle School Board Primary Candidate Platforms

Six candidates are competing for two Seattle School Board seats in the August 6 primary. Current board members in Districts 4 and 5 are stepping down. In District 7, incumbent School Board Member Betty Patu is running unopposed for a second term.

In the Seattle School District primary, registered voters may only vote for candidates running in their districts. The top two candidates in each race will advance to the general election and appear on ballots citywide.

KUOW's Ann Dornfeld talked with each candidate in the contested races.

Bellevue running back Isaiah Gilchrist, left, leaps to avoid a tackle attempt by Eastside Catholic's Noah Failauga during the first half of the Class 3A high school football championship Friday, Dec. 4, 2015.
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

Bill Radke talks with investigator and former federal prosecutor Carl Blackstone and Bellevue Wolverines Booster Club president John Connors about the recent investigation into Bellevue High School's football program.

Students on the 7th floor of Koerner Library, University of British Columbia.
Flickr Photo/UBC Library (CC BY NC ND 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/7x9qat

Bill Radke speaks with Vancouver Sun columnist Vaughn Palmer about a new rule being considered by the University of British Columbia. The university is considering a ban on all professor-student romantic relationships. The University of Washington allows professors to date students if there's no conflict of interest. 

The latest results of the test known as the Nation's Report Card are in. They cover high school seniors, who took the test in math and reading last year. The numbers are unlikely to give fodder either to educational cheerleaders or alarmists: The average score in both subjects was just one point lower in 2015 compared with the last time the test was given, in 2013. This tiny downtick was statistically significant in mathematics, but not for the reading test.

But even though the changes are small, chances are you're going to be hearing about them in a lot of places.

Seattle Public Utilities says its dams are about three-quarters full.
Flickr photo/Konstantin Stepanov (CC BY 2.0)

Recent, routine tests in Seattle Public Schools found that 49 schools had at least one faucet with lead levels above the district’s acceptable limit.

The district’s lead threshhold is stricter than federal standards: 10 parts per billion, compared to 20.

This winter, Jameria Miller would often run to her high school Spanish class, though not to get a good seat.

She wanted a good blanket.

"The cold is definitely a distraction," Jameria says of her classroom's uninsulated, metal walls.

Her teacher provided the blankets. First come, first served. Such is life in the William Penn School District in an inner-ring suburb of Philadelphia.

The hardest part for Jameria, though, isn't the cold. It's knowing that other schools aren't like this.

Flickr Photo/Mark Ahlness/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 http://bit.ly/245Cn9a

This school year, Seattle Public Schools agreed to teachers' union demands for a minimum amount of recess: 30 minutes a day. 

In public radio's mythical Lake Wobegon, "all the women are strong, all the men are good-looking, and all the children are above average."

The first two conditions are merely unlikely. The third one is a mathematical absurdity. However, a new survey suggests that almost all parents believe it to be true.

In a recent survey of public school parents, 90 percent stated that their children were performing on or above grade level in both math and reading. Parents held fast to this sunny belief no matter their own income, education level, race or ethnicity.

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Larry Downing/Reuters

It’s been eight years since DJ Patil — then the data and analytics lead at LinkedIn — helped coin the term “data scientist,” and the profession has already become one of the most popular in the country.

Bellevue running back Isaiah Gilchrist, left, leaps to avoid a tackle attempt by Eastside Catholic's Noah Failauga during the first half of the Class 3A high school football championship Friday, Dec. 4, 2015.
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

Supporters of the Bellevue High School football team are hitting back after an independent investigation found facts about the program breaking recruiting rules. 

news release issued last week indicated that the investigators have found the football program's boosters club paid for football players to attend an alternative private school and that false addresses were used to make out-of-district players eligible for the team. 

Before we can even be seated in the Midtown cafe where we meet, Lily Eskelsen Garcia has begun her barrage of plainspoken, provocative opinions. A Democratic superdelegate, she's just come from a spot on a morning news show, where, she declared, "Hillary is winning no matter how you look at it."

Preschool teacher Cindy Bly opens class at Quinsigamond School in Worcester, Massachusetts.  Many of the pupils in the school come from economically stressed families. Achievement here is ranked in the bottom fifth of the state.
KUOW Photo/Carolyn Adolph

In Washington state, we look at Massachusetts with envy.

Massachusetts has a top-ranked education system, whereas Washington is in the lower middle.

Let's begin with a choice.

Say there's a check in the mail. It's meant to help you run your household. You can use it to keep the lights on, the water running and food on the table. Would you rather that check be for $9,794 or $28,639?

It's not a trick question. It's the story of America's schools in two numbers.

Attention, Students: Put Your Laptops Away

Apr 17, 2016

As laptops become smaller and more ubiquitous, and with the advent of tablets, the idea of taking notes by hand just seems old-fashioned to many students today. Typing your notes is faster — which comes in handy when there's a lot of information to take down. But it turns out there are still advantages to doing things the old-fashioned way.

Carl Wieman is a top physicist at Stanford University who won the Nobel Prize in physics 2001. Now he’s set aside his groundbreaking research for a very different mission: He wants to revolutionize teaching and learning in higher education.

Wieman says the tools to do that are inexpensive and accessible. But it’s not clear everyone in higher education wants to hear him.

Eric Westervelt has our story, as part of the NPR education team’s 50 Great Teachers series.

Teacher Reid Sundbad teaches P.E. at Chinook Middle School. He also meets with a group of Latino boys three times a week for a class called Advisory.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

It’s the last day in Reid Sundblad’s P.E. class near Sea-Tac Airport, and a few kids are really bummed.

“Oh, don’t cry,” Sundblad says. “It’s been a pleasure and I love you all.”

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