It has been nearly 10 years since our youngest daughter graduated from the International Baccalaureate program at Foss High School, and nearly that long since I worked in the Tacoma School District. I did some exploring on the district’s website to see just what the district has done in the past decade.
I was impressed by the innovation happening in the district’s schools: the School of the Arts has grown to 645 students in grades 9 through 12, with its students showing reading and writing scores above the 80th percentile in the past three years; the staff at Baker Middle School is striving to get all its teachers National Board certified; and Lincoln Center offers an extended-day program, rigorous classes and the support students need to prepare for college.
These are three examples of educators coming together to envision a different type of learning environment, or teaching method, aimed at increasing their students’ academic level. As an educator, I appreciate the time commitment it takes to prepare for classes and grade papers and, for some teachers, to work full-time while going to school.
Rather that point to shortcomings, strengths should be acknowledged and supported. Yes, Tacoma, I support Proposition 1. Keep up the innovation.