December 12 update
The school board voted four to one to reject the superintendent’s recommendation to move the Liberty schedule to a straight six periods.
November 28 update
Superintendent Steve Rasmussen presented his Liberty schedule recommendation to the board: A straight six-period day. The school board will continue the discussion and is expected to make a decision on the schedule at its meeting on Dec. 12.
November 8 update
As tasked by the superintendent in January, the Liberty-specific schedule committee submitted its final report this week. Dr. Rasmussen is now reviewing the recommendation and will make a report to the school board at the just-scheduled Nov. 28 meeting. The school board will take his recommendation and make a final decision on the Liberty schedule at its Dec. 12 meeting.
As the school board seeks deeper understanding about the background and rationale for a schedule change at Liberty, the administration on Nov. 7 presented more information about the superintendent's mandate for at least 150 hours of teacher contact time per class.
January 25 update
Superintendent Rasmussen tonight presented the school board with his response to the High School Schedule Committee’s work. His letter to students, staff, and families announces that there will be no significant changes to the schedules at each high school for 2012-2013; however, he has required action steps to be taken at each high school between now and the beginning of the 2013-14 school year to address and rectify the problems that were affirmed, clarified, and unearthed during the committee’s work.
January 12 update
While the Committee ultimately did not present a recommendation for a common schedule to the superintendent, members compiled key findings into a final report
. The Committee gave an overview of the work and report to the superintendent and the school board on January 11. The superintendent responded with a goal to come back with subsequent action steps by the end of the month.
January 9 update
The final report of the High School Schedule Committee will be discussed at the January 11 School Board Meeting. A final copy of the report as well as the superintendent's response will be posted here afterwards.
December 16 update
The Committee concluded its work at its final meeting Wednesday, December 14. Although the Committee did not recommend a common schedule, it made a summary of its key findings and recommendations regarding an optimal high-school schedule. Those will be presented to the Superintendent in January, and he will use those to make an action plan of next steps.
In late 2008, our high-school administrators—through collaboration, focus groups, surveys, and constant monitoring and analysis—created five belief statements about what makes for an optimal high-school experience. They are in the areas of Access, Connectivity, Citizenship, Resiliency, and Expression. These belief statements have served as a filter for many decisions that have incrementally changed the landscape of our high schools—from online learning to partnering with our middle schools to provide more flexibility in fulfilling graduation requirements to rethinking summer-school enrichment opportunities.
The superintendent also asked the high-school administrators specifically to take a closer look at the use of time and scheduling. That work was intentionally delayed to allow for a more careful analysis of existing practices in our schools. However, in this current period of diminishing resources and growing academic expectations, it is now important that we return to that charge and look closely at the precious resource of time in our high schools in an effort to design a common schedule for high schools. We do not yet know what such a schedule will look like, but it should allow us to better share resources, consolidate our professional support for staff, and capitalize on our learnings from the last three years.
Now, in the fall of 2011, we are starting by engaging our staff in conversations that will be the foundation for a community process that will include a committee of principals, teachers, staff, students, and parents. There will be ample opportunities to learn together and provide feedback.
The High School Schedule Committee meetings are open to the public and will be held at 6:00-8:30 p.m. on the dates listed below. All meetings except the November 16 and December 14 meetings are in the Administration Building Board rooms. The November 16 and December 14 meetings are in Issaquah High School's library. Agendas will be posted before each meeting; mini-summaries will be available the day after a meeting; and official notes will be posted as soon as possible following a meeting. Materials will be linked when applicable. Links to each item will be activated as documents become available.