Seattle Hall Pass Podcast

Seattle Hall Pass Podcast

A podcast by Jane Tunks Demel & Christie Robertson. News and conversation about Seattle Public Schools.

Episodes

February 23, 2024 37 mins

See our Show Notes. Send errata and other notes to hello@seattlehallpass.org In Episode 27 of Seattle Hall Pass, Christie and Jane talk to Seattle School Board Director Brandon Hersey about monitoring the progress of SPS students toward the goals of 3rd Grade Reading, 7th Grade Writing, and College and Career Readiness. We hope to have a Q&A session with Director Hersey in the future. Send a short voice memo or typed questio...

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Please see our Show Notes. Please send errata or other feedback to hello@seattlehallpass.org Christie and Jane discuss the February 7, 2024 Seattle School Board meeting, focusing on the process to fill vacancies following the resignations of two board directors, district efforts related to Continuous School Improvement Plans, and an update on the legislative session.

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February 6, 2024 27 mins

In Episode 25 of Seattle Hall Pass, Christie and Jane interview Lisa Rivera, who served on the board for four years before she resigned on January 30, 2024. Check out the Show Notes.

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February 4, 2024 21 mins

In this Seattle Hall Pass episode, Christie and Jane interview Liza Rankin, discussing her roles as School Board President and Legislative Liaison. The conversation delves into legislative priorities, with President Rankin providing insights into the legislative process and the importance of community advocacy.

CONTENT WARNING: There is NO discussion of board director resignations or vacancies in this episode, as it was recorded in...

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Episode 23 of Seattle Hall Pass discusses the sudden resignations of School Board directors Vivian Song and Lisa Rivera. The episode delves into the factors leading to their departure, and touches on the significant impact of their exit. The episode provides insights from various stakeholders, reflecting on the directors' contributions and the broader implications for governance and representation in the Seattle Public Schools syst...

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In this episode of Seattle Hall Pass, Christie and Jane delve into developments shaping K-12 education in the 2024 Washington State Legislative Session. Tune in for a breakdown of these legislative developments and a preview of what to expect in the coming week. Topics covered include special education, school lunch, and more. See our show notes for links to the committees, bills, and more. 

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January 16, 2024 42 mins

The Washington State legislative session started on Monday, January 8th. Jane and Christie talk through some of what is happening in Olympia that pertains to education. Some topics include: the governor's budget, district funding bills, student mental health, restraint and isolation, special education, and gun responsibility. Show notes

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Part III in our three-part series of on-the-ground stories from the "October shuffles" at SPS elementary schools, where teachers are moved between classes and buildings to match enrollment and class ratio requirements. In this episode, we interviewed: 

  • Jessica Warner-Grant, a parent at Olympic Hills Elementary in Lake City
  • Tyler Dupuis, a teacher at Orca K-8 in Columbia City 
  • Kevin Litwack, a parent at Leschi Elementary in the ...
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In this episode of Seattle Hall Pass, we feature the second of a three-part series on the October shuffles at SPS elementary schools. Here, we interviewed parents at Sarah Nau at Cedar Park Elementary in Lake City and Cortny Helmink Adams Elementary in Ballard about how the upheaval affected their communities. Part I - Dunlap See our show notes.

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January 2, 2024 37 mins

In this episode of Seattle Hall Pass, we feature the first of a three-part series on the October shuffles at SPS elementary schools. We interview two parents (Nasirah Salaymane Craig and Alex Wakeman Rouse) and one teacher (Wil Depusoy) from  Dunlap Elementary school in Southeast Seattle about how the upheaval affected their community. See our show notes

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In this episode of Seattle Hall Pass, Christie and Jane bring you a conversation with the President of the Edmonds School Board, Nancy Katims, and the President of the Edmonds Teachers Union, Andi Nofziger-Meadows. They organized a Multi-District Letter to State Legislators requesting that 44 percent of the $1.2 billion state budget surplus for 2024 be distributed to PK-12 education. The letter was co-signed by union leaders and sc...

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December 17, 2023 30 mins

This week we’re reporting on the first meeting of the newly elected School Board, on December 13, 2023. The Board elected a new President, Vice President, and Member at Large.  Also, the board voted on the Budget Resolution, in which they authorize the superintendent on the cost-saving measures he can “consider and research” to close the $105 million budget gap. See our show notes

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This episode of Seattle Hall Pass covers the Budget Resolution that will be voted on by the School Board on December 13. It provides a broad outline of mechanisms the district may explore to address the $105 million budget deficit for the 2024-25 school year. Jane and Christie touch briefly on the swearing in of the four School Board Directors who were elected on November 7. 

See our show notes.

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Christie and Jane interview outgoing Seattle School Board Director Chandra Hampson at the end of her four-year term. The focus of our conversation is the Financial Policy, co-authored by Hampson, that the Seattle School Board recently passed. We also talk about PTA funding, the belief gap, community engagement, special education spending, and a potential financial audit. See our show notes.

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November 19, 2023 27 mins

In our latest Seattle Hall Pass episode, we're confronting a critical issue: the focus on kids furthest from educational justice is so far not bearing fruit. More kids than ever are falling below proficiency for math and reading - goals set by the Seattle School Board as part of Student Outcomes Focused Governance. Despite the concerning trends, there's a silver lining: the district and the school board are addressing these challen...

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This episode of Seattle Hall Pass has some breaking news — we have a preview of the fiscal stabilization plan to be presented at the School Board Meeting on Wednesday, November 15, that was sent to us by an anonymous source. This plan maps how the superintendent is advising that the district should address the structural budget deficit for future years. 

DRAFT Fiscal Stabilization Plan - "Direction for 2024-25 & 2025-26 Fiscal ...

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This episode of Seattle Hall Pass covers the Financial Policy that will be voted on at the November 15, 2023, school board meeting. In the first part of this episode, Christie and Jane will give a high level summary of the Financial Policy. And then School Board Director Vivian Song joins us for a great discussion about her proposed amendment to the policy. 

See our show notes 

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November 9, 2023 26 mins

Jane and Christie cover the Seattle Public Schools board meeting on October 25th.

  • The community engagement committee is sunsetting after 13 meetings. They completed some "one pagers" about board-community engagement but did not finish a full plan or toolkit.
  • The legislative agenda for the upcoming state legislative session was introduced. Priorities include special education funding, transportation funding, supports for student...
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October 27, 2023 35 mins

Jane and Christie interview Ron Davis, a candidate for Seattle City Council, District 4

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October 21, 2023 34 mins

This episode of Seattle Hall Pass covers the October 17 Budget Work Session, the second in a set of 10 meetings that will span the entire school year. Some of the topics covered are:

  • Why Seattle Public Schools needs to cut $105 million
  • Cost-saving ideas being tossed around
  • Potential criteria for school closures and consolidations
  • The budget-planning timeline, and how the election will play into that
  • An initial report on the ke...
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