This week is midwinter break for Seattle Public Schools – no classes, remote or otherwise. By early next week, the district has promised an update on the plan to offer in-person learning again for preschoolers through 1st graders, as well as special-education students on “intensive pathways.” The district has also finally released full results of its survey of families whose students are eligible to return to school buildings. They’re published here. The survey was open January 5th-19th; the district reports that of the 10,742 eligible students, 46.8 percent of families said they want their student to return to in-person learning, 40.9 percent preferred to continue remote learning, and 12.3 percent did not respond. Breaking the results into demographic groups, SPS says white families had the highest support for in-person learning, 56 percent, while Asian families had the highest support for continuing remote learning, also 56 percent. The district also surveyed staff and says 30 percent want to continue working remotely. The district says the responses from families and staff “were used to develop proposed instructional models and create sample illustrative schedules that have been proposed to Seattle Education Association in the ongoing negotiations.” A separate district update says those negotiations are continuing this week and that the district has requested a mediator’s help. (Here’s the union’s own latest update.) Once an agreement is reached, the district says, it will survey families again.
West Seattle, Washington