As families have seen on various outlets, including the email sent today by Janine – SPS enrollment was low and many schools are being impacted in losing teachers and reorganizing classes. QAE is one of the many schools being impacted. We would have had to say good-bye to Ms. Bonnie as our newest 2nd grade teacher and it would have impacted all of our classrooms through a reconfiguration of 2nd grade (would have need to created many split grades that would have had a cascading effect from K to 5th).
The impact to our student community seemed too great. The PTSA started exploring options with school staff. The team dived into all options ranging from doing nothing to revising the entire PTSA budget to do something. It is with great gratitude to Bonnie, Megan and Helene for volunteering a creative solution of job sharing and personal sacrifice that allowed us to arrive at today’s solution. We are impacting the least amount of students, a class gets to have 2 great teachers, we lose no teachers from our QAE family and PTSA helps bridge a gap to continue to support our students.
But this action is also met with the knowledge that many other schools are in a worse situation. Schools do not always have the resources or ability to have so many pieces come together. During the fundraising season, the PTSA may come to you with asks fo money but today we are asking for your time: please lend your voice to the other schools in our community that need our help.
This is absolutely unacceptable and we need our collective voices to be heard on how this impacts our communities. Please consider editing and sending a version of the note below and spreading the word to all of your friends within SPS to write them. Any letters can be sent to email@example.com. We need to galvanize and flood them with letters to show them how displeased we are.
See the SPS summary of the staffing adjustment as well as their FAQ about the process.
Another way to advocate is to attend one of the upcoming Superintendent listening tours. The closest to our area is Ballard High School on October 4th.
Sample Letter to Send to the SPS Board
This is just an example, please write your own or edit as you see fit. Note the underlined sections that should definitely be edited.
Subject: Unacceptable displacement of teaching staff
Dear Superintendent, School Board and senior SPS staff,
I am parent of two SPS students - a second and fourth grader at Queen Anne Elementary. I am incredibly frustrated to see that SPS is displacing staff from approximately twenty different schools and majorly disrupting the lives of teachers, families and communities as a result. The impact on students at Nova and Interagency is even greater given the disproportionate impact on them.
I understand that there is a correlation in number of students and revenue and with the 1.4% enrollment decrease, you need to find ways to cut cost. Is there a reduction in staff or other major cost cutting efforts happening at the JSCEE? Why are schools bearing all the reductions in revenue? This is absolutely unacceptable.
Also, you are already in violation of the McCleary ruling on classroom sizes which as you know should be a maximum of 17 students for K-3 and 25 students for 4th grade and up. At my kids' schools, they have more kids in their classrooms already so combining classrooms will only put SPS further away from appropriate class sizes.
You need to do better for teachers, families and communities. How will you retain top talent when teachers can easily go to neighboring districts that are more effectively managed where they can make more money? How can you shuffle kids around after school has started which is hard for all of them but especially for neuro-atypical children in our system?
At work, if I were to consistently miss projections and disrupt hundreds or thousands of customers regularly, I would have been fired long ago. Please take us off this annual enrollment projection roller coaster and find ways to keep communities intact.
[ Your name ]
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