Fill Empty Bowls and support North Seattle families

Choose a hand-crafted bowl by a local student or artisan, fill it with delicious food from a selection of neighborhood restaurants, and support families in need in north Seattle.

Empty Bowls 2013

North Helpline‘s 5th annual Empty Bowls fundraiser is Sunday, May 4th, Noon – 3:00 p.m. in The Commons at Nathan Hale High School (10750 30th Ave NE). Soup, salad, bread, and dessert will be provided by a number of local restaurants including Piatti Restaurante, Got Soup?, Wedgwood Ale House, and Kaffeekaltsch. There will also be an extensive silent auction and live entertainment. Tickets are $25 purchased in advance, or $35 at the door.

The event is part of the the Empty Bowls Project, an international grassroots effort to raise both money and awareness in the fight to end hunger. The bowl you enjoy a warm meal from and take home with you becomes a tangible reminder of hunger in our community.

North Helpline (12736 33rd Ave NE) combats hunger and homelessness in greater North Seattle by providing critical human services to more than 1,700 clients each week. They operate a food bank and health care clinic in addition to offering move-in support, eviction and utility shut-off prevention, help with obtaining a driver’s license or ID, and hygiene packs.

DSC00378If you’re unable to attend the event but are still interested in supporting North Helpline, here are some other opportunities:

  • Visit the Wedgewood Ale House on Thursday, April 17th and 30% of your order will be donated to North Helpline.
  • Volunteer to sort or distribute food in their Food Bank, to pick up donations at local grocery stores, or to provide emergency services to clients.
  • Donate food or money, anytime.

 

Scramble for eggs this Saturday

[in our best monster truck voice]: SATURDAY SATURDAY SATURDAY!

Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center Spring Egg Hunt starting line in 2011.

Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center Spring Egg Hunt starting line in 2011.

This Saturday, April 19, at 10 AM SHARP, Seattle Parks and Recreation is holding Spring Egg Hunts all over the city. You can see the full, city-wide list on their website, but here are the hunting grounds closest to our area:

NORTHEAST

April 19 Spring Bunny Trail
Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center [6535 Ravenna Ave NE], 10 a.m., Ages 12 and under

April 19 Spring Egg Hunts
Nathan Hale Stadium [10750 30th Ave NE], 10 a.m., Ages 1-11
Laurelhurst Park [4554 NE 41st St], 10 a.m., Ages 12 and under

NORTHWEST
April 19 Spring Egg Scramble
Green Lake Community Center, 10 a.m., Ages 3 and under
Green Lake Community Center, 10:30 a.m., Ages 4-7
Green Lake Community Center, 11 a.m., Ages 8-10

Another option in NE Seattle is Calvary Christian Assembly’s annual Easter Egg Hunt at Cowen Park (5849 15th Ave NE). From the CCA website:

Registration begins at 11:30 am. We partner with Roosevelt Neighborhood vendors for this event that features 3 age-specific egg hunts as well as crafts, games, prizes, inflatables and more! Want to help? We will need people to donate candy and work at the event.

For all of these events, you’ll want your kids to bring baskets with which to carry their ovate loot.

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Ravenna Blog publisher posing with the largest holiday decoration in NE Seattle (outside of Candy Cane Lane).

Eckstein Band Rummage and Bake Sale this weekend

Eckstein Middle School’s Annual Rummage and Bake Sale is coming up!  On Saturday, April 5, from 9 AM – 3 PM, come for the deals, the baked goods, but especially to support Eckstein’s music program. All while accompanied by their award-winning jazz combos!

One of Eckstein Middle School’s bands performs at a concert on June 7, 2014. (From the EMS Band Facebook page)

The sale is also looking for your donations to help make the event a success. (Spring cleaning, anyone?)

Bring clothing in wearable condition, household items others could use, books and music for fresh ears and eyes to enjoy, furniture in good condition, toys, games and puzzles with all pieces and parts, and sporting equipment for a budding athlete to the Eckstein cafeteria on Friday, April 4, from 1:30 – 4 PM. Please no electronics, unassembled furniture, baby carseats, or strollers. The cafeteria’s exterior entrance faces the garden area in the back parking lot.  

Monies raised from the rummage sale go directly to the Eckstein’s music program and are used to help offset some of the cost of off-campus music performances (like performing at the Monterey Jazz Festival and bringing home LOTS of awards), repair damaged instruments, and provide scholarship to children who need assistance.

Dennis and Judy Schulte Memorial Walk & Rally (PHOTOS)

On Monday, March 25, 2013, a family crossing NE 75th Street at 33rd Avenue NE was struck by a drunk driver. Grandparents Judy and Dennis Schulte were killed instantly. New mother Karina Ulriksen-Schulte and her ten-day-old baby boy, Elias, were both critically injured.

A year later, Karina and Elias, along with other family members, community members, safe streets advocates, and local community and state representatives returned to the site together. And then continued on to a rally for more action to prevent driving while intoxicated.

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The weather seemed to echo the emotions of the walkers: Blazing bright sunlight one moment — matching the smiles of those on the walk — followed by dark skies, heavy rains, and heavy hearts.

Our goal during the walk and rally was to capture as many images as we could. For more on the story of the walk and rally, we’ve collected links below:

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The starting point of the anniversary memorial walk was the same as it was almost a year ago: Top Pot Doughnuts, on the corner of NE 70th St and 35th Ave NE.

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Before joining the main group of walkers across the street, members of the Schulte family met with some of the staff of Fire Station 40. Their engine was one of the first emergency vehicles to arrive at the collision scene a year ago.

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Dan Schulte and one of the fire fighters of Station 40.

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Back over at Top Pot, local media had some time to talk to Dan Schulte before the walk.

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Here’s the same scene from another angle.

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Per Johnson of the Wedgwood Community Council speaks to the gathered walkers. Purple shirts were given to participants to wear during the walk and rally, and also to the other events during Safe Roads Awareness Week.

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Dan Schulte with his sister, Marilyn.

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Seattle Police Department officers prepare to guide those on the memorial walk down the route to the crash.

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Dan Schulte pushes his wife, Karina Ulriksen-Schulte, at the beginning of the memorial walk. Their son, Elias, is in the stroller on Karina’s right.

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Former Mayor Mike McGinn (center, with blue cap) at the start of the walk.

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State Representative Gerry Pollet (teal jacket, in front of yellow umbrella).

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Madi Carlson, Family Ride, walks her wheels and brood down NE 35th Avenue.

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The first round of heavy rain begins as the group nears the intersection of 35th Avenue NE and NE 75th Street. State Representative Jessyn Farrell (tan trenchcoat) walks with her two children.

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The group begins to cross the intersection of 35th Avenue NE and NE 75th Street. As they walk up the hill towards 33th Avenue NE, the walkers take the same route (west up NE 75th Street) as Mark Mullan did in his large black pick-up truck one year ago.

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Dan and Karina, and family.

 

At the NW corner of where 33rd Avenue NE meets NE 75th Street, the group pauses for a few moments, in silence. (We returned to the corner a few hours later to take the video above.)

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Schulte family members moving on after a pause at the crash site.

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One woman watches the family walk on as the main group of walkers continues to linger for a quiet moment at the site of the crash.

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Main group now moving toward the site of the rally on the lawn of nearly Eckstein Middle School.

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Battalion 6 Chief Mike Milam (white shirt, black tie) speaks with Fire Station 40 staff near the crash site. Chief Milam was also at the scene a year ago.

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News crews film the crowd and the memorial site while some Eckstein students look on.

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By the time the group arrives at the rally site, the rain was coming down hard.

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Ravenna-Bryant Community Association board member Sarah Swanberg.

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Dan Schulte thanks the first responders in attendance, and the crowd applauds.

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Karina Ulkisen-Schulte (center with brown cap) listens to husband Dan speak.

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Per Johnson (green), Cathy Tuttle (teal), and the crowd.

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SDOT’s Chief Traffic Engineer, Dongho Chang, was easy to spot in the crowd.

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Lacia Lynn Bailey keeps Judy’s Truffle dry at the rally. Lacia and a much smaller Judy’s Truffle were the last to speak with Judy, Dennis, Karina and Elias before they continued down 33rd Avenue NE to cross the street. She would also be one of the first people at the collision scene moments later.

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SDOT Traffic Safety Coordinator Jim Curtin stands under his yellow umbrella during downpour number three of the event.

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Sergeant Dave Fitzgerald of the Seattle Police Department, listening to speakers at the rally.

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Mayor McGinn (in red) stands next to Cathy Tuttle, executive director of Seattle Neighborhood Greenways.

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Virginia Gunby (burgundy coat), Transportation Chair of the Ravenna-Bryant Community Association, and her husband listen to rally speaker Darrin Grondel, Director of the Washington Traffic Safety Commission.

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State Senator David Frockt speaking at the rally. Courtney Popp, an attorney who volunteers with MADD, also spoke.

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Elias, having a snack.

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During a shift between pouring rain and pouring sunlight, we did get a rainbow near the crash site.

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Marilyn Schulte addresses the crowd, thanking neighborhood residents for their support of her family.

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After the rally concluded, Senator Frockt and a staffer (facing the camera) listened to Lacia Bailey describe the events of a year ago. Frockt’s own grandparents were killed in a collision by a suspected intoxicated driver in Tennessee.

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Natural flowers at the rally site.

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Hand-made flowers on Lacia’s fence across from the crash site.

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The afternoon before the walk and rally, Lacia invited the community to come paint her fence, just across the street from the crash site, with bright flowers and positive messages to “DRIVE SOBER.” Judy’s Truffle was on hand, offering suggestions and reprising her position last year of comfort goat to those who needed a nuzzle.

Spring and Summer Parks & Rec brochures are now available

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Spring classes, and summer camps and classes, special events and pool schedules all await you the latest Seattle Parks and Recreation brochure. Hard copies are available in local community centers, but you can also download an e-edition right here (5.1 MB PDF).

Registration for summer camps has already begun, but registration for other types of classes starts on Tuesday, March 11.

 

Soup Swap 2014 set to simmer on January 25

Seemingly endless days of drizzle and 45°F temperatures are best fought with good neighbors and hot soup. Soup Swap 2014 is being held on Saturday, January 25 from 3-5 PM at the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center (6535 Ravenna Avenue NE). Participants bring labeled quarts of frozen homemade soup and leave with a different set to enjoy at home.

Ravenna Blog's Soup Swap haul at the 2013 event -- brought four quarts of Pasta e Fagioli, came home with an assortment of yum.

Ravenna Blog’s Soup Swap haul at the 2013 event — brought four quarts of Pasta e Fagioli, came home with an assortment of yum.

Here are the details:

1. MAKE a BIG batch of soup.

2. FREEZE your soup in QUART sized containers.

3. BRING your frozen soup to the RECC on January 25, and swap ‘em for others!

A+ labeling job on this batch of Curried Lentil and Squash Soup

A+ labeling job on this batch of Curried Lentil and Squash Soup

We’ve created a Soup Swap 2014 Facebook event page for those that would like to RSVP and/or chat about the event.

For more how-to Soup Swap info, check out this page at the National Soup Swap site.  Our post on Soup Swap 2013 includes a video of a group who have been swapping for quite some time.

Loaves of Ravenna and Wedgwood bread from Grateful Bread, waiting to be given away in a contest.

Loaves of Ravenna and Wedgwood bread from Grateful Bread, waiting to be given away in a contest.

And what is a soup meal without a little bread on the side? We’ll be bringing a few loaves of Grateful Bread’s Ravenna and Wedgwood breads to give away at the event.

The Soup Swap 2013 spread (complete with kale bouquet) waiting to be divvied up by participants.

The Soup Swap 2013 spread (complete with kale bouquet) waiting to be divvied up by participants.

You need not be from Ravenna or even Northeast Seattle to participate! Soup Wizards from across the Puget Sound region are welcome to attend.

Latest Northeast Branch renovations nearly complete!

The meeting room of the Northeast Library (6801 35th Avenue NE) still has some children’s area materials stashed in it, but the remainder of our local branch of the Seattle Public Library is nearly done with its recent renovations.

Ravenna Blog Intern #2 samples the selection in the newly renovated Children's area of the Northeast Branch of the Seattle Public Library.

Ravenna Blog Intern #2 samples the selection in the newly renovated Children’s Area of the Northeast Branch of the Seattle Public Library.

After an open house held in October, the library saw some reduced hours (including Friday closures) in November and December as construction rotated through the branch. Changes for the staff included the obvious during construction…

…as well as a new layout: The reference desk area is now where the public computers are located, and all staff service desks and self-checkout area are along the west wall (or the top of the picture below).

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Bird’s-eye, roof-off view of the renovated portions of the Northeast Branch. NE 68th Avenue entrance is on the left (click to enlarge).

All the new pieces of the Jodi Green and Mike Halperin Children’s Area — seating, tables, even the shelves in the center of the area — are mobile.

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A slightly out-of-focus Delavan at the October 2013 open house gave the plans a thumbs-up.

Folks with small kids, you’ll like this: Story Times are starting up again soon! Here’s the schedule, which starts up again on January 14:

Toddler Story Time (ages 1-3): Thursdays at 10:15 AM and 11:15 AM.

Preschool Story Time (ages 3-5): Tuesdays at 10:30 AM.

Pajamas and Puppets (all ages): Wednesday, January 29 at 7 PM.

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City Librarian Marcellus Turner, Library Board members, representatives from Miller Hayashi Architects, and Children’s Services Librarian Erica Delavan at the open house in October 2013.

The Northeast Branch doubled in size after a major expansion in 2004. It was renovated most recently in 2009. Seattle architect Paul Thiry designed the building, which opened June 3, 1954 and was designated a landmark by Seattle’s Landmarks Preservation Board in January 2001.

Take the PLUNGE on New Years Day at Matthews Beach (UPDATE)

UPDATE (January 1, 2014): Jordan Stead, a photojournalist with the Seattle P-I, was at the PLUNGE this afternoon. Now we can enjoy the action while staying DRY:

One year ago, one of the Ravenna Blog interns (whose birthday happens to be New Year’s Day) really really really wanted to do the Polar Bear Plunge at Matthews Beach please mom please.

So we went. He got his five-year-old toes wet, and I was proud of him.

The 2014 Polar Bear Plunge is coming up on Wednesday, January 1, at Matthews Beach (9300 51st Ave NE). People dressed in swimsuits and wooden Viking helmets and costumes will run into the cold, cold waters of winter Lake Washington to celebrate the coming of a new year…and win a Patch of Courage for submersing themselves up to their necks.

Participants may start registering on-site at 11 AM, with plunging to take place at noon.

More information follows, as well as pictures from the 2013 Polar Bear Plunge.

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It’s cold out, but it’s a festive atmosphere.

The history of the Polar Bear Plunge (from the Seattle Parks and Recreation’s PBP event website):

The Polar Bear Plunge was the first official event of its kind in the Seattle area. Janet Wilson, Aquatic Center Coordinator at Meadowbrook Pool, started the event off on January 1, 2003. About 300 people participated in the first Polar Bear Plunge; since then the attendance has reached nearly 1,000 brave bears. The plunge has inspired other, similar events in the Seattle Area. At this family event, wear a costume, enjoy warm beverages, and receive a Patch of Courage if you immerse yourself.

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Not even Waldo himself could stay in hiding from this event.

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Why, YES, even children can participate. Kids (as well as folks who might need to take things a little more slowly and/or carefully) enter the water before the rest of the huddled, shivering masses. Above is as far as the birthday boy got, which I still found impressive.

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After the Polar Cub Club has had a turn, the cold, shivering masses line up along the shore from one end of the park (looking south, here)…

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…to the other (north view). Lifeguards are on duty.

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The event is rather popular for local photographers/media folks, too. (Though they tend to be dressed to stay dry.) In the foreground here is Josh Trujillo (Seattle P-I).

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And at noon, everyone not simply spectating heads into the lake!

Some hints and safety tips for Plungers (adapted from the PBP website):

1. Come early/Carpool/Take the bus: Parking is limited! Plan your trip with the Metro Trip Planner.
2. If you have heart problems, consult your health care provider BEFORE taking the plunge.
3. Don’t drink! Alcohol does NOT warm you up, and actually accelerates hypothermia.
4. Do not stay in the water longer than 15 minutes. Body heat is lost 25 times faster in water than in air.
5. Do NOT remove your warm clothing until swim time, and DO remove wet clothing before getting back into dry clothes.

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I’m not sure if the woman on the left was a zombie BEFORE she went in, or just after.

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After the plunge, participants are treated to the Official Polar Bear Plunge Beverage: HOT TANG. Sounds gross, but is actually quite tasty. Think Hot Apple Cider, but with faux orange flavor instead.

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The Burke-Gilman Trail cuts through Matthews Beach Park, and is another excellent way to get to the park without a car. Great way to get warm after the plunge, too, by cycling or hoofing it home on the trail.

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Ravenna Blog Intern #1 enjoying his HOT TANG.

The Polar Bear Plunge has a Facebook page if you’d like to learn more about the event, or see more of last year’s crazy people participants. The number of people willing to jump into 46°F water in January while barely clothed is impressive.

For those who might appreciate more of a warm-up before plunging into winter lake water, there is a Resolution Run 5K and Polar Bear Dive down at Magnuson Park, also on January 1. Registration is limited to 2,500 crazy people.

Seattle Parks & Recreation winter registration is open!

The weather outside is frightfully cold, at the moment. But your local community centers are nice and warm!

Head inside your local community center or pool to pick up a copy of the Winter 2014 course brochure for Northeast Seattle, or download it here (3.04 MB PDF).

Seattle Parks and Recreation 2014 Winter Brochure for Northeast Seattle (click to download; 3.04 MB PDF)

Seattle Parks and Recreation 2014 Winter Brochure for Northeast Seattle (click to download; 3.04 MB PDF)

The Northeast Seattle Parks and Recreation facilities covered in the above brochure are:

Community Centers:

  • Laurelhurst (4554 NE 41st St)
  • Magnuson (7110 62nd Ave NE)
  • Meadowbrook (10517 35th Ave NE)
  • Northgate (10510 5th Ave NE)
  • Ravenna-Eckstein (6535 Ravenna Ave NE)

Pools:

  • Helen Madison (13420 Meridian Ave N)
  • Meadowbrook (10515 35th Ave NE)

Course registration began on Tuesday, December 3, so hurry up and register today before “Hip Hop Tots” fills up!

Changes to Eckstein attendance area to be introduced at tonight’s School Board meeting (UPDATE)

Changes to Eckstein Middle School’s attendance area and yet another shuffling of APP students and schools — changes made public only five days ago — will be introduced to the Seattle School Board this evening, to be voted on at the following regular meeting of the School Board on November 20…

unless

In a reply to emails voicing concerns about the new Growth Boundary maps released on Friday, November 1, School Board Director Harium Martin-Morris sent the following response:

I am writing in response to your email regarding the November 1st version on the Growth Boundary Plan.  As written, I do not support the plan and along with Director De Bell will be offer an amendment that will go back to the previous version of the plan with the following changes:

*   Assign NE APP students to the new James Addams Middle School starting in 2014
*   Have a maximum of 3 classes per grade level at James Addams Middle School
*   Assign others APP to Hamilton until Wilson Pacific  Middle School is online.  At that point Hamilton would also go to the 3 classroom per grade and all others go to Wilson Pacific

That would mean that the middle school and elementary attendance areas in the NE would go back to  October 16th revision with some minor changes basis on community input.

Regards,

Harium Martin-Morris

At this time, we have heard that only two Directors are openly in support of the amendment: Martin-Morris and DeBell. In order for the amendment to pass, it needs support from four of the seven members of the board.

If you are in support of the previous plan, Wedgwood Elementary PTA President Terri Green recommends that you “keep sending e-mails to the entire School Board [...] voicing your concerns about the plan released last Friday and attend the meeting at the John Stanford Center (2445 3rd Avenue South) this afternoon at 4:15 pm. We need to turn out in force so the School Board can see how many folks are dissatisfied with the November 1 boundary proposal.”

Contact info for all seven Seattle School Board Directors can be found in this latest issue of the Wedgwood Weekly (upper right hand corner)

On Sunday, November 3, the SNAPP (North Seattle Accelerated Progress Program) PTA said on its website it “maintains its position that splitting the APP Middle School and co-housing with attendance area schools is not in the best interest of our community or helpful with the overcrowding in the north end. Although many APP MS students come from the Whitman and Eckstein reference area, putting APP in these schools would only serve to further crowd them and keep reference area kids out.”

On Monday at a Call to Action meeting at Wedgwood Elementary that over 200 parents attended, many voiced surprise over the revisions made to the previous Growth Boundary maps (released on October 16), as well as bewilderment over why the November revisions were made in the first place. And no explanation for the changes — released last Friday at 7 PM ahead of a Wednesday meeting — were given by the School Board.

Eckstein Middle School PTSA President Tobi Bet, speaking at Monday’s meeting said, “No rhyme or reason to this. None.”

On Tuesday, the Wedgwood Community Council issued a “formal letter of concern” about the boundary changes, which they said “did not allow critical stakeholders adequate time to review and consider the changes relative to potential alternatives.”

And this morning, Ravenna-Bryant Community Association released a letter of their own, which urges the School Board to reconsider the latest boundary changes (via email):

Dear Board of Directors:

On behalf of the Ravenna Bryant Community Association Board of Directors, I ask that the school boundaries proposed on Friday November 1st not be adopted because they do not meet three of the four core values for Seattle’s Comprehensive Plan.

The four core values of Seattle’s Comprehensive Plan are:

  • Community - developing strong connections between a diverse range of people and places
  • Environmental Stewardship - protect and improve the quality of our global and local natural environment
  • Economic Opportunity and Security - a strong economy and a pathway to employment is fundamental to maintaining our quality of life
  • Social Equity - limited resources and opportunities must be shared; and the inclusion of under-represented communities in decision-making processes is necessary

Our neighborhood schools create a strong sense of Community because families can walk to school, for the school day as well as extracurricular activities.  The new boundary proposal would erode this sense of community by forcing kids to attend a school miles away, instead of blocks.

Our neighborhood schools allow families to walk, bike, or carpool to school which not only creates community but also helps meet the City’s Environmental Stewardship goals.  Eckstein has a successful walk and bike to school program that would be destroyed by these new boundaries.

The last minute release of the proposed boundaries, given at the late hour of 7 p.m. on a Friday night for a Wednesday meeting, does not adhere to the City’s Core Value of Social Equity.  Our community is left scrambling at the last minute to provide alternatives and organize ourselves.

The Ravenna Bryant Community Association urges the School Board to reject these new boundaries, and demands that the Seattle School District create new boundaries that honor the core principals put forth in the City of Seattle’s Comprehensive Plan.  Please consider moving the boundaries for Eckstein further north, at least to NE 95th, and find room for the APP at Hamilton in the south wing of Lincoln High School.

Sincerely,

Tony Provine

RBCA President

 

Tonight’s regular meeting of the Seattle School Board starts at 4:15 PM at the John Stanford Center for Educational Excellence (2445 3rd Avenue S).

The agenda for tonight’s meeting is available here (PDF). Public testimony is scheduled to start at 5 PM for those 25 speakers who were pre-selected; an additional 63 on the wait list), with the Action Items and Introduction Items portion scheduled to start at 6 PM.

School Board meetings are streamed live online (though not for iOS users, it seems) and broadcast on Channel 26 (Seattle Public School TV).

We will have live coverage of tonight’s meeting below, if we can. We’ll be watching along at home, and taking notes.

UPDATE (2:29 PM): It is our understanding from a Keep Wedgwood Neighborhood Kids at Eckstein Facebook page post by Wedgwood Elementary School PTA President Terri Green that the newest version of the Growth Boundaries map AND Director Harium Martin-Morris’ amendment will BOTH be introduced at the meeting tonight, and voting will take place on both at the next School Board meeting on November 20. In case there was confusion on the order of things.

Also, hot out of the Ravenna Blog Email Inbox, a letter on the recent boundary plan changes by Representative Gerry Pollet:

Dear Board members and Superintendent Banda,

As with many of my neighbors, I was also shocked by this last minute change to the assignment plan proposals, which had never been presented at a public meeting. The proposal would dramatically undermine much of the benefits achieved by the District in adopting a neighborhood assignment plan. It is unacceptable that students immediately north of 75th – within sight of Eckstein – would be assigned to Addams.

When I heard from neighbors about this change to the Plan, I reviewed the materials prepared for the Board’s meeting and was dismayed that they do not disclose this impact in plain language. One has to first review the detailed map and wade through the bureaucratic lingo to piece together that this dramatic change to our community would be put in place in September.

Students in the Wedgwood Elementary assignment zone between NE 75th (where Eckstein is) and NE 95th, would be walking to school where there are no sidewalks and a very dangerous arterial on a steep hill to cross. Ironically, our community has been working with the City to improve the crosswalks, signals and speed on NE 75thto allow students to safely cross to and from Eckstein. We can reduce transportation costs and increase safety by amending this plan to resume having Wedgwood Elementary feed Eckstein.

I am all too well aware of the incredible overcapacity problem at Eckstein, coupled with ancient portables and other capacity issues. This latest proposal is not a solution for that problem. As you know, along with my colleagues, I have worked to bring significant funding and resources to reopen and renovate schools to address the overcrowding across NE and N Seattle. We will continue to work with the District to procure funds – and hope that the District will work with the City and your legislative delegation to obtain new properties near the core of our overcrowding problems, e.g., Roosevelt Reservoir and Lake City Pierre properties.

The community south of NE 50th Street had to petition and organize to be kept together with their neighborhood assignment to Bryant Elementary in the last set of decisions. It is disheartening that this effort and commitment to that community would be ignored again in the latest boundary change proposal – again without having provided the community a chance to comment at the meetings. The repeated need to organize communities to have the same discussion about integrity of neighborhoods and stability in assignments undermines the excellent progress made by the District in the School Assignment Plan.

Representative Gerry Pollet

46th District (Northeast and North Seattle, Lake Forest Park and Kenmore)