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Highly Capable and Racial Equity Services Advisory

ALTF 2018-19

Advanced Learning Task Force (ALTF)

Final Report and Recommendations

The primary responsibility of the ALTF was to provide Seattle Public Schools with parental and community perspectives on advanced learning programs and highly capable services.

During their 18-month term, the ALTF embarked on a journey that would include a re-examination and re-envisioning of how Seattle Public Schools serves students who bring the aptitude, potential, and ability for above and well above performance against state standards. This work was anchored in, and built upon, our commitments as set forth in state law and Board policy.

Additionally, our Strategic Plan: Seattle Excellence, provided key priorities to which the work of the task force and subsequent outcomes and recommendations would need to align.

Read the ALTF Final Report 2018-2019

The superintendent of Seattle Public Schools established the Advanced Learning Task Force (ALTF) in September 2018 to review and make recommendations to the Superintendent and School Board related to the policies, procedures, and practices of advanced learning programs and highly capable services. This task force will support the district’s work on equitable access to advanced learning as directed in School Board Resolution No. 2017/18-10.

The task force’s work was to prioritize our district Commitments to Ensuring Educational and Racial Equity (School Board Policy 0030, Seattle Public Schools) to equitable access and to ensuring a barrier-free environment for all students to experience high quality instruction that results in growth and achievement for the highly capable, advanced and potentially advanced learner. The significance of this work and the subsequent recommendations put forward by this Task Force will provide our Superintendent and School Board information and guidance for decisions that will impact policy and procedures governing every elementary, middle and high school across Seattle Public Schools.

The role of the task force was to review state laws, district policies and commitments, examine research and current best instructional practices befitting the advanced and highly capable learners, consider new and innovative approaches to identification, testing, assessment and eligibility and make recommendations for necessary steps toward establishing highly effective practices befitting students and their families. Our goal is to rethink and re-examine our practices to ensure all students receive the high-quality instruction necessary to grow and achieve, across all of our schools. This Task Force will focus on the identification, support, services, operational systems and practices necessary to meet the academic, social, emotional and behavioral needs of highly capable and advanced learners.

The task force carried out four phases of work

  1. Adopting a Mission and Vision for Advanced Learning in Seattle Schools: The task force will review existing policy and laws and draft a clarifying mission and vision statement to be proposed to the school board for approval and inclusion in policy 2190. This statement will guide clarification, improvement, and future development of Advanced Learning programs and Highly Capable services and practices.
  2. Defining and/or re-developing Advanced Learning Programs and Highly Capable services: The task force will review high quality research and best practices about specific program elements and student services, which include clear expectations and guidelines, that will be provided within neighborhood schools and/or within a Highly Capable Cohort setting.
  3. Ensuring Equitable Identification and Access: The task force will review the district’s existing identification, testing, assessment and eligibility procedures, current research, and best practices and outcomes from peer districts. Policy, procedure, and practice recommendations will be developed to align district systems and ensure equitable access to high-quality instruction for advanced learners.
  4. Districtwide Implementation: Considering the outcomes from Work Areas 1-3, the task force will provide recommendations regarding implementation across the district, including specific feedback on community engagement messages and outreach methods, potential areas of risk, professional development, resource and central office support needs, and schedule milestones.

The goal is to be selective of applicants to ensure there is a balance of perspectives and backgrounds. This task force was to be representative of our Seattle Public Schools, students and families. The task force was comprised of teachers, principals, parents/guardians, community members, and staff members from various departments at our central office.

Family/Community Representation

Seattle Public Schools is committed to a high-quality education for all children. We are dedicated to providing a learning environment that inspires and supports all of our students. We know that the meaningful involvement of parents and supportive community agencies is a very important part of attaining that level of excellence. Stakeholder input may be gathered prior to, during, and following decisions and activities.

Our goal is for the task force to include parent/guardian, family, and community members who represent the diversity of Seattle Public Schools and who can provide valuable insight and perspective regarding the future of services, testing and eligibility practices for advanced learners in Seattle Public Schools.

The family and community members on the committee should bring an open mind, a passion for student learning, and a willingness to engage in inquiry, meaningful dialogue, and collaboration throughout the task force process. We are especially interested in people who have not had a chance to participate in past task force or committees sponsored by Seattle Public Schools.

Responsibilities of Task Force Members

  • Attend all scheduled meetings
  • Assist in reviewing materials
  • Contribute to the group’s work

Advanced Learning Task Force Members

  • Andrew Siegel Parent of a Seattle Schools Student, identified Advanced Learner
  • Christine Tang Community Organization
  • Colin Pierce Staff, Teacher at Rainier Beach High School
  • Devin Bruckner Parent of a Seattle Schools Student identified HC
  • Dominique Daba Community Organization
  • Ji-Young Um Parent of a Seattle Schools Student identified HC
  • Joanna Noonan Parent of a Seattle Schools Student, identified Highly Capable (HC)
  • Jonathan Carroll-Madden HC Student in Seattle Schools
  • Joy Sebe Parent of a Seattle Schools Student, identified Highly Capable (HC)
  • Julie van Arcken Parent of a Seattle Schools Student identified HC
  • Kari O’Driscoll Community Organization
  • Laurie Bohm Parent of a Seattle Schools Student
  • Mary Kunce Parent of Seattle Schools Student, identified Advanced Learner
  • Dr. Nancy Hertzog Subject Matter Expert: Professor, University of Washington
  • Richard David Bash1 Parent of a Seattle Schools Student identified HC
  • Rina Geoghagan StaffPrincipal Decatur Elementary
  • Stacia Hawkinson Staff, Indian Education Services, Seattle Schools
  • Theresa Yeh Parent of a Seattle Schools Student identified HC
  • Ursula White-Oliver Parent of a Seattle Schools Student identified HC
  • Valeri Makam Parent of a Seattle Schools Student identified HC
  • Vanessa Meraki Staff, Teacher at Emerson Elementary
  • Central Staff:
  • Kari Hanson Director, Student Support Services, Seattle Schools
  • Stephen Martin Supervisor, Department of Advanced Learning, Seattle Schools, Retired
  • Deborah Northern Coordinator, Department of Racial Equity Advancement, Seattle Schools
  • Faizah Bradford, Coordinator, Department of Racial Equity Advancement, Seattle Schools
  • Wyeth Jessee Chief, Student Support Services, Seattle Schools

Honorable mention: Names in italics indicate ALTF member or participant no longer attending. We are grateful for their contribution to this work

I. Charge

The Superintendent of Seattle Public Schools will establish an Advanced Learning Task Force (ALTF) to review and make recommendations to the Superintendent and School Board related to the policies, procedures, and practices of advanced learning programs and highly capable services. This task force will support the district?s work on equitable access to advanced learning as directed in School Board Resolution No. 2017/18-10.

II. Scope of Work

The Advanced Learning Task Force (ALTF or task force) provides a District-recognized forum for the parent community and agencies that support the learning needs of the Advanced Learner, including Highly Capable. The primary responsibility of the ALTF is to provide Seattle Public Schools with parental and community perspectives on Advanced Learning programs and Highly Capable services, including shared goals, mission and vision, understanding of historical and current operation, and future plans regarding programs and services, identification, testing and eligibility.

The work of the ALTF will serve to re-examine and re-envision how Seattle Public Schools serves students who bring the aptitude, potential, and ability for above and well above performance on state standards. This work will be anchored in and build on our commitments as set forth in state law and Board policy. The task force will consider and develop recommendations based on historical and current practices, student data, and will evaluate innovative and creative approaches to meet the academic, social, emotional and behavioral needs of students for the future. In addition, ALTF recommendations will inform Seattle Public Schools guiding documents, including our Formula for Success, Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) Whole Child Framework, and Student Assignment Plan.

Task force working processes are intended to be public, dynamic, incorporating expertise from task force members, anchor documents such as State Law, District policy and guidance, work product from prior advisory committees, SPS Research and Evaluation Department, and additional outreach as-needed and determined by the task force, to develop high quality and equitable recommendations. Student voice shall be incorporated into the discussion through some combination of surveys and in-person engagement with students. Additional parent, community and stakeholder group input may be gathered prior to, during, and following programmatic decisions and activities.

The task force will review and make recommendations in four (4) specific areas:

1) Adopting a Mission and Vision for Advanced Learning in Seattle Schools : The task force will review existing policy and laws and draft a clarifying mission and vision statement to be proposed to the school board for approval and inclusion in Policy 2190 and accompanying Supt. Procedures. This statement will guide clarification, improvement, and future development of Advanced Learning programs and Highly Capable services and practices.

2) Defining and/or re-developing Advanced Learning Programs and Highly Capable services : The task force will review high quality research and best practices about specific program elements and student services, which include clear expectations and guidelines, that will be provided within neighborhood schools and/or within a Highly Capable Cohort setting.

3) Promote Equitable Identification and Access: The task force will review the district?s existing identification, testing, assessment and eligibility procedures, current research, and best practices and outcomes from peer districts. Policy, procedure, and practice recommendations will be developed to align district systems and ensure equitable access to high-quality instruction for advanced learners.

4) Districtwide Implementation : Considering the outcomes from Work Areas 1-3, the task force will provide recommendations regarding implementation recommendations across the district, including specific feedback on community engagement messages and outreach methods, potential areas of risk, professional development, resource and central office support needs, capacity needs, and schedule milestones.

Work from the Advanced Learning Task Force (ALTF) will be presented its findings, recommendations, and opinions to the Superintendent and School Board by means of communication from the Chief of Student Support Services, throughout the period of time the Task Force convenes and will publish Agendas and Minutes on the website. A final report will include a review of all projects and activities, as well as all recommendations of the task force. The Advanced Learning Task Force will not serve for the purpose of decision-making. Decisions regarding policy and procedures will remain with the superintendent and School Board.

III. Policy Considerations and Guidance

Guiding policy documents include (links):

IV. Membership

A. Number

The task force will be a minimum of 20 members appointed by the Superintendent or his / designee. One third to one-half of the members will be parents of children currently designated as Advanced Learner (AL) or Highly Capable (HC) the balance of the council will include: parents of non-identified Advanced Learners and non-identified Highly Capable children, students, staff representatives, agency personnel, civic groups, and college or university personnel who have an interest in advanced learning and highly capable services for students in Seattle Public Schools. The selection committee will work intentionally to balance this task force to ensure we have enough expertise to address the questions facing us.

B. Qualifications and Selection Criteria

The goal is to be selective of applicants to ensure there is a balance of perspectives and backgrounds. This task force will be representative of our Seattle Public Schools, students and families. The task force will be comprised of teachers, principals, parents/guardians, community members, and staff members from various departments at our central office.

Parent/Family Members

Parent/family members who have a student currently attending Seattle Public Schools.

Staff Representatives

Staff representatives may include, but not be limited to: certificated teachers, building administrators, Educational Staff Associates and central office staff/administrators.

Community Organization Representatives

Community representatives may hold positions in educational, service, government or not-for-profit organizations/associations with an interest in and knowledge of Advanced Learning. A representative of the organization should be nominated by the executive director or senior manager of the organization.

Appointments to the task force will be made so that collectively the group will represent the diverse population of Seattle Public Schools in terms of ethnicity, language, race, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, type of family (two parent, single-parent, foster care/kinship, etc.), geographic location within the city, and school level (pK-12).

C. Selection Process

1. Nominations due.

2. Nominations reviewed by the review committee.

3. Members of the review committee are appointed by the Associate Superintendent of Teaching and Learning with intention to invite and include:

* Parent and Community Representative(s)

  • Member(s) from the current Highly Capable Advisory Team;
  • School-based Race and Equity Team participant(s);
  • Seattle Parent Teacher Student Association (SPTSA) President or designee;
  • Families of students served through Special Education or a representative of Seattle Advocacy and Advisory Committee (SEAAC)
  • Community Based Organization Representative (Rainier Scholars, UW,);
  • School Board Member

Central Office Staff:

  • Chief of Student Support Services
  • Director of Student Support Services
  • Advanced Learning Supervisor
  • Student Support Services Consulting Teacher/Program Specialist
  • Representative from the Strategy and Partnership division

4. Review committee will work in accordance with a specific rubric to recommend appointees and alternates to the Superintendent

5. Invited appointees notified by email, no later than Friday, June 1, 2018 with the first meeting scheduled to occur on Thursday, June 28, 2018.

6. Further meetings will be scheduled in collaboration with the task force members.

7. Invited appointees to accept or decline a seat on the task force by Friday, June 8, 2018.

8. Remaining seats will be filled by alternates

9. Membership will be posted on the District website

No one may serve on the task force who has a financial interest in the outcome of the recommendations made by the task force.

D. Manner of Notification ? Notice of Nomination Process

The District shall provide public notice to individuals and organizations that may reasonably be interested in serving on the Advanced Learning Task Force. Notice shall include the following activities:

1. District Website;

2. Publishing in the Principal Communicator with direction to share with BLTs and PTSAs;

3. Direct written notice to active community organizations which may have an interest in participation;

4. Direct written notice to all Parent Teacher Student Associations (PTSAs) at all school sites;

5. Known subject matter experts; and,

6. News release to news outlets, including community and ethnic newspapers

E. Discussion of Consideration and Efforts

Members will be selected and appointed in accordance with School Board Policy 4110: Family & Community Advisory and Oversight Committees, and the accompanying Procedure 4110SP.

F. Duration of Task Force and Terms of Office

1. ALTF is established as a task force to run for one full year and may extend due to needs and progress of the work.

2. Initial term of office is set at one calendar year (June 2018 to June 2019).

V. Operations

A. Staffing

1. The Advanced Learning Task Force (ALTF) will operate fully on the work of its members and volunteers.

2. School District resources may be used for the following activities at the discretion of the Associate Superintendent of Teaching and Learning

* Scheduling meetings;

* Distributing agendas, handouts and posting on website; and,

* Preparing and distributing minutes and posting on website.

B. Orientation

An orientation session will be held to begin the work of the newly-appointed members. Implicit Bias Training (review of Video) is a requirement.

C. Responsibilities

Task Force members will be expected to attend monthly meetings (dates and times to be decided) and an initial orientation training. Missing three consecutive meetings ? automatic opt-out of committee participation.

The Advanced Learning Task Force (ALTF) convened from August 2018 through December 2019.

Advanced Learning Task Force (ALTF) Fact Pack

December 10, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
December 10, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

December 3, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
December 3, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

November 19, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
November 19, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

October 22, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
October 22, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

September 17, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
September 17, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

August 20, 2019 ALTF Retreat Agenda
August 20, 2019 ALTF Retreat Minutes

August 13, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
August 13, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

July 20, 2019 ALTF Retreat Minutes

July 9, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
July 9, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

June 11, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
June 11, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

May 21, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
May 21, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

May 7, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
May 7, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

April 16, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
April 16, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

March 19, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
March 19, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

March 5, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
March 5, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

February 26, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
February 26, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

January 22, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
January 22, 2019 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

December 18, 2018 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
December 18, 2018 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

November 20, 2018 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
November 20, 2018 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

October 16, 2018 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
October 16, 2018 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

September 18, 2018 ALTF General Meeting Agenda
September 18, 2018 ALTF General Meeting Minutes

August 10, 2018 ALTF Retreat Agenda
August 10, 2018 ALTF Retreat Minutes

June 28, 2018 ALTF Orientation Agenda
June 28, 2018 ALTF Orientation Minutes

Please check our meeting materials webpage for additional documents.

Orientation: Thurs, June 28, 2018

Retreat:

  • Fri, Aug 10, 2018
  • Sat, Jul 20, 2019
  • Tues, Aug 20, 2019

Regular Meetings:

  • Tues, Sept 18, 2018
  • Tues, Oct 16, 2018
  • Tues, Nov 20, 2018
  • Tues, Dec 18, 2018
  • Tues, Jan 22, 2019
  • Tues, Feb 26, 2019
  • Tues, Mar 5, 2019
  • Tues, Mar 19, 2019
  • Tues, April 16, 2019
  • Tues, May 7, 2019
  • Tues, May 21, 2019
  • Tues, June 11, 2019
  • Tues, July 9, 2019
  • Tues, Aug 13, 2019
  • Tues, Sep 17, 2019
  • Tues, Oct 22, 2019
  • Tues, Nov 19, 2019
  • Tues, Dec 3, 2019
  • Tues, Dec 10, 2019

00 Binder Index

Intro

  1. Intro ALTF Work Session
  2. ALTF Work Plan Summary 9/12/19

Appendix A

  1. 2014 HC Task Force Results Report

Appendix B

  1. Policy 0030
  2. ALTF Final Report (August 2014)

Appendix C

  1. 2019-24 Approved Strategic Plan

Appendix D

  1. ALTF 2018 Description and Charge

Appendix E

  1. Advanced Learning Mission, Vision, and Commitments 7/9/19
  2. AL Dept. MVC

Appendix F

  1. ALTF Foundational Recommendations

Appendix G

  1. ALTF Secondary Schools Summary August 2019
  2. Course Guidance for SPS HS HC Pathways
  3. Final – HC FAQs and HS Course Rec
  4. AP Courses Exams General Info
  5. Honors Definition and Description – DRAFT Recommendations
  6. Advanced Learning Master Presentation (secondary) 2018-2019
  7. AP Changes Flyer
  8. AP Changes Flyer Spanish

Appendix H

  1. ALTF Student Voice Interviews June 2019

Appendix I

  1. When Schools Cause Trauma – Teaching Tolerance

Appendix J

  1. Providing Opportunities for Students with Exceptional Mathematical Promise

Appendix K (under construction)

  1. OSPI Guiding Document – Addressing Under Representation of Student Populations in Gifted Programs
  2. ALTF 2e Special Populations Research Review
  3. Profiles HC Services Outliers
  4. Common Characteristics of Gifted Individuals – NAGC
  5. Gifted Education Strategies – NAGC
  6. Chapter 392-170 WAC
  7. Eligibility Comparison Document for ALTF 7/9/19

Appendix L

  1. HC Service Model Comparison WA Districts
  2. HC Gifted Program Comparison Districts Outside WA
  3. HCP pg 14-15
  4. ALTF Model Comparisons 9/5/19

Appendix M

  1. Fakequity – Let’s Not Confuse “Access and Inclusion” with Racial Equity

Appendix N

  1. ALTF Fact Pack
  2. ALTF Norms