Issaquah teachers are critical of ‘unsustainable workloads’

November 26, 2013

New standards, longer work days are top complaints

Members of the Issaquah Education Association met with the Issaquah School Board for an hour last week, and much of the discussion centered on what the IEA president termed “unsustainable workloads” for teachers.

During a study session prior to the school board’s Nov. 13 meeting, the IEA — a union of more than 1,000 certificated teachers — spoke about the results of a bargaining survey conducted this fall. More than 70 percent of Issaquah’s teachers responded, and a few common complaints emerged.

Washington’s adoption of the Common Core State Standards, along with a new evaluation system for teachers and principals, have led to increased workloads and a general sense of overwhelming stress among educators, IEA officials said.

Read more

School board candidates give opposing views for district’s future

October 22, 2013

Policy and training divided the two Issaquah School District school board candidates at an Oct. 17 candidate forum.

Appointed board member Allison Meryweather is attempting to win her first election for the position against Lisa Callan, who also applied for the board appointment earlier this year.

By Greg Farrar Alison Meryweather (left) listens as Lisa Callan answers a question during their Issaquah School District board candidate forum Oct. 17 with a full Issaquah City Council chamber and city cable television viewers in attendance.

By Greg Farrar
Alison Meryweather (left) listens as Lisa Callan answers a question during their Issaquah School District board candidate forum Oct. 17 with a full Issaquah City Council chamber and city cable television viewers in attendance.

“I discovered first hand the lack of funding our state provides our schools,” Meryweather said about her time on the board and volunteering in classrooms. “It’s not just about funding. It’s also about how we strategically invest those dollars.”

Callan said she believed her leadership roles in The Boeing Co. and a long history involved in the educational system qualifies her for the board position.

Read more

State adopts new science standards for schools

October 14, 2013

NEW — 6 a.m. Oct. 14, 2013

Washington has adopted a new set of standards aimed at providing consistent science education for students in all grade levels.

The adoption of the Next Generation Science Standards — which emphasize skills in engineering and technology — was announced Oct. 4 by State Superintendent of Public Instruction Randy Dorn and Gov. Jay Inslee at a press conference at Cascade Middle School in Highline.

The standards spell out what students at each grade level should know in four domains: physical science; life science; earth and space science; and engineering, technology and science application.

Read more

State Legislature restores some funding to schools

July 23, 2013

While some education backers are critical of the budget cobbled together by state lawmakers in late June, numbers show public schools will receive more money in the coming year.

Whether it’s enough money for the state to fully fund basic education needs is a question that hasn’t yet been answered.

The Washington Education Association issued a news release that says the state Legislature’s 2013-15 budget “falls far short” of meeting basic education requirements. In the McCleary vs. Washington case, the state Supreme Court ruled the Legislature must increase education spending and fully fund basic education by 2018.

Read more