This resolution is a shortened version of other legislative district resolutions but it does show support for the Nathan Hale teachers who choose not to administer the SBAC.

I have a feeling that the 46th will have wished they passed something stronger after the reaction of parents whose students go through the SBAC testing begin to surface.

At least Representative Gerry Pollett took a stab at it. One must give him credit because he was one of the state legislators who voted for the original Common Core Standards bill that was approved before the Common Core Standards had even been released.

Kudos to the 46th District voters who understood and appreciated the seriousness of what is happening in our schools. All but one member voted for the resolution. The person who voted against the resolution was Lisa Macfarlane of DFER. No surprise there.

And for the record, School Board Director Stephan Blanford, who lives in the 37th District, spoke rather in-eloquently against the resolution with some rather unbelievable mis-information. Not surprising given his financial backers. See the Post Script for more on his mis-representations.

To follow is the resolution:

Resolution in Support of Nathan Hale HS Educators’ Decision Not to Require Students to Take 11th Grade Smarter Balance Assessments

Whereas the educators at Nathan Hale High School, via their Senate, have decided not to give the 11th grade Smarter Balance Assessment (SBAC) tests because of the lengthy disruption to teaching and learning; and

Whereas the Washington Education Association (WEA) has passed a resolution supporting educators’ right to inform their students of the option of opting out of SBA and other high-stakes tests,

Therefore be it resolved that the 46th District Democrats voice their support for the informed choice of the educators, parents and students at Nathan Hale HS not to give (or take) the 11th grade SBA test; and

Therefore be it also resolved that we urge the Seattle School District and the Seattle School Board to support educators in their schools who choose not to administer tests.
Submitted by Rep. Gerry Pollet, State Committeewoman Sarajane Siegfriedt and King County Alternate Elizabeth Hanson March 3, 2015

Amended and passed by the 46th District Democrats March 19, 2015.


This post was submitted by Dora Taylor


Post Script:

Gems out of the mouth of School Board Director Stephan Blanford:

The Seattle Public Schools will lose $40M in Federal funding if students opt out of the SBAC.

This statement is so sad on many levels.

The amount that keeps getting repeated by those who have the most to lose politically and financially is $40M, but that’s statewide. $40M for Washington State is a drop in the bucket. There is a shortfall of billions of dollars in our state for adequate school funding. An operating budget for one school in Seattle is between $7-10M.

$40M might barely cover the cost that the school districts in our state have had to pay to prepare for the SBAC testing in terms of upgrading technological capabilities in school buildings to allow students to take the SBAC on the computer along with the cost of the new computers, books, materials used by the teacher and students and hours that staff have spent to set up the computers and monitor the testing. We won’t go into lost hours of instruction time and library availability due to these tests.

Blanford then tried to link the $40M to special education funding.

He lost me completely there.

And then Director Blanford said that if 11th graders do not take the SBAC, it denies students access to alternative routes to graduation.

There is nothing anywhere that refers to 11th graders taking the SBAC and alternative routes to graduation.

It seems that Blanford was provided talking points by his Democrats for Education Reform (DFER) and League of Education Voters (LEV) buds and couldn’t even keep that straight.