Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Tag: Tacoma Public Schools

April
10th

TACOMA: Rethink idea for McCarver library

Re: “Rebuilt school might include community library” (TNT, 4-8).

I was amazed at the arrogance of Tacoma Public Schools Operations Chief Stephen Murakami as he ignores the concerns of teachers and librarians to “define what the library of the future will be.”

McCarver Elementary is first a school, despite the admittedly admirable goal of integrating the community in the library.

In the 1970s, Henry Foss High School was built as an “open-concept” school without walls, including any dividing of the library from the rest of the school. It didn’t take long for walls to be added to the library

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Sep.
29th

TACOMA: Charter schools will drain away dollars

High praises for the Tacoma School Board in questioning the decisions of the Charter School Commission to open three charter schools next fall in Tacoma (TNT, 9-27). The board was also correct in voting not to support the initiative to establish charter schools.

In a time when the state, according to the McCleary Supreme Court decision, is not making school funding the priority that our state constitution mandates, any drain of funds to establish new schools makes no sense. The voters rejected charter schools at least four times before the law was barely approved.

Tacoma has made great strides to

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Dec.
20th

TACOMA: Roosevelt is working for improvement

Re: “8 Pierce County schools make state list of low-performing schools” (TNT, 12-20).

Roosevelt Elementary School may be in its debut on the list of low-achieving schools in Tacoma, but the issues impacting student achievement at Roosevelt have been looked at in great depth by school staff and district administrators.

The administration has supported Roosevelt with additional staffing and instructional initiatives that put the right tools in the hands of the right teachers to address the needs of Roosevelt’s students.

Results? In December, the district administered a math assessment aligned with state standards to all students in grades 1-5,

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Sep.
22nd

STRIKE: Teaching most demanding job in existence?

Re: “Why teachers are on strike” (letter, 9-15).

My issue is not about whether the strike is right or wrong. My issue is with a comment made by the letter writer: ”It’s not about classroom size. It’s about fair assessment of one of the most difficult and demanding jobs in existence.”

Teaching is an important job and a necessary one, however, to even hint that it is one of the “most difficult and demanding jobs in existence” is a slap in the face to every man and woman in the Armed Forces of this great nation. Not to mention fire fighters,

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Sep.
22nd

STRIKE: Hungry students? TNT claim ridiculous

Throughout the recent Tacoma teachers strike, we read continuously that the ongoing school closure was cutting off students from receiving school breakfasts and lunches, leaving them hungry.

I acknowledge that the strike has caused great inconvenience for affected families and that various organizations stepped up to feed and care for kids. But to say that parents would not be able to feed their children is ridiculous. A breakfast of cereal and milk or a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and fruit for lunch is not expensive, and most people would agree.

I was disappointed in The News Tribune for using

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Sep.
21st

STRIKE: TNT unsupportive of Tacoma teachers

We are very disappointed with the lack of support The News Tribune has given to the Tacoma teachers. On two occasions, close to 90 percent of them voted for a strike. The last strike: 1978 or thereabouts, 33 years ago. Does that sound like a strike-happy bunch?

The TNT has crucified Dale Washam over the past year as an incompetent despot, alienating his co-workers and employees. Superintendent Art Jarvis approaches the Tacoma teachers in a similar autocratic manner and this is not considered worthy of a more in-depth report?

We have had four children in Tacoma schools, two now in college,

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Sep.
21st

STRIKE: System failing students

Our system is broken from the inside out. Having the ability to shut down schools and impede the learning of 28,000 students is an awful lot of power.

I keep hearing the message thrown around that we are doing this in the best interest of our students. I seriously call that in to question. The system is set up so that students are the ones who are losing. While both sides are attempting to negotiate a deal that they can live with most students are at home wanting to return to school.

Let’s not romanticize the strike. Both sides have

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Sep.
21st

STRIKE: What it means to be a teacher

Being a teacher means bearing college debt that far exceeds my salary. Some days I work more than double the hours I am paid to work. I invest hundreds of my own dollars to buy supplies/materials for my students each year.

I feed my students. I counsel them when they are suffering and in need of guidance. I instill values and respect in them. I try to help them meet standard in all areas, despite the fact that I am working against 11 to 13 years of unimaginable issues they walk in with.

I try to replace their own ideas

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