Archive for October, 2013

SVP Fast Pitch Final Showdown

By Rebecca Bittner

Since 2011, Social Venture Partners’ annual Fast Pitch competition has helped socially-minded innovators make a positive impact in Puget Sound. This year, over 100 applicants entered the competition, but only 20 semifinalists remain—3 of whom are pioneering new solutions to ensure that all students receive a quality education. The semifinalists will face the judges tomorrow, October 29. From there, only fourteen will move on as finalists to the SVP Final Showdown on November 13 at Seattle Center’s McCaw Hall. (more…)

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Call for Volunteers for College Application Completion Events

Road Map to College is kicking off the next round of its campaign: College Application Completion Events. These events run through early December at locations across the region, provide one-on-one support to students researching colleges, filling out applications and drafting personal statements.

Road Map to College is looking for volunteers for these events. Volunteers will have an opportunity to work directly with students and help them reach their postsecondary dreams. Currently, the following events need the most volunteer support:

12.03 Rainier Beach High School
11.07 Roosevelt High School
11.12 Ingraham High School
11.06 Cleveland High School

South King County
11.06 Lindbergh High School
11.19 Hazen High School
11.07 Auburn Riverside High School
11.12 Kentridge High School
12.04 Kentwood High School

To volunteer, please sign up on the Road Map to College website.

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Public charter school trailblazer to visit Seattle October 22

Ember Reichgott JungeRetired Minnesota State Senator Ember Reichgott Junge, author of the country’s first public charter school law, will speak at free evening event.

The League of Education Voters will welcome retired Minnesota State Senator Ember Reichgott Junge, author of the country’s first public charter school law on Thursday, October 22. The free event will take place 7:00–8:30 p.m. at the downtown Seattle Public Library.

Senator Reichgott Junge will read portions of her book, Zero Chance of Passage, which describes her experience creating policy to support innovative high-quality public charter schools in Minnesota. Complimentary copies of Zero Chance of Passage will be distributed at the event.

October 22 will be an important day for public charter school implementation in Washington state. It is the first deadline for a school or nonprofit organization planning to open a charter school to submit a letter of intent to a charter authorizer. The full charter school application is due to a charter authorizer on November 22, 2013.

Charter schools are independent public schools that are allowed to be more innovative and are held accountable for improved student achievement.

What: Free Speaker Series with Retired Minnesota State Senator Ember Reichgott Junge
When: Thursday, October 22, 7-8:30 p.m.
Where: Downtown Seattle Public Library

This event is co-hosted by Democrats for Education Reform and the Washington State Charter Schools Association.

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The lasting impacts of good primary school teachers

Your child’s primary school teacher can have a much bigger impact on them than you might realize—the quality of their teaching can impact everything from your child’s college attendance rate to their savings rate, reported the Wall Street Journal recently.

Researchers from the National Bureau of Economic Research found that students with high “value-added” teachers—i.e., teachers who had large impacts on their students’ test scores—in grades 4–8 were “more likely to attend college, earn higher salaries, live in higher socioeconomic status neighborhoods and have higher savings rates.” The same students were also less likely to become parents as teenagers. In addition, when low “value-added” teachers were replaced by average teachers, student lifetime earnings increased by about $250,000 per classroom.

The entire article is published on the Wall Street Journal website.

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Chris Korsmo speaking at UW Law conference, Forces of Change: Law, Policy and Equity in Washington State Education

Chris Korsmo, CEO of the League of Education VotersLeague of Education Voters (LEV) CEO Chris Korsmo will be speaking at the University of Washington School of Law tomorrow, October 11, 2013, to give a keynote address at the conference, Forces of Change: Law, Policy and Equity in Washington State Education. Her talk, “Zero tolerance for inequity: Creating the schools our kids deserve,” will provide an overview of the state of public education in Washington today—what we’ve achieved, what needs work, and how LEV is working to improve public education in Washington state for each and every kid.

The conference will feature a day of lively discussions, debate, and learning about school reform in Washington state with policy makers, educators, public education lawyers, and scholars participating in panel discussions and lightning talks.

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Infographic: America’s school dropout epidemic by the numbers

The League of Education Voters is a member of the Dignity in Schools Campaign, which has organized the Fourth Annual National Week of Action on School Pushout, taking place September 28–October 5, 2013.

Higher rates of suspensions and expulsions lead to higher dropout rates, and students of color, low-income students, and special education students are disciplined at higher rates than other students, adding to our nation’s dropout epidemic. (more…)

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Parent finds plan disproportionately affects Title 1 schools

This post was written by Fiona Cohen and originally posted on the Our Schools Coalition website on October 1, 2013.

An elementary parent took a close look at the impacts of the proposed border changes on walkability, and found that as they are written now, the changed borders disproportionately affect children living in poverty.

Julie Van Arcken spoke at a community meeting on growth boundaries held in the old Meany middle school on Monday night. A Beacon Hill resident, her address would be moved from Maple Elementary, which is an easy walk, to Van Asselt, which would require a bus ride.

She took a look at which schools would be losing parts of their walk zones if the new boundaries went into effect. Found that 8 percent of Seattle schools would lose part of their walk zones. But when she looked at Title 1 schools—that is, schools with large numbers of low income kids—she found that 28 percent of those had boundary changes that would mean that kids could no longer walk to school. (more…)

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