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The Issaquah Press
Issaquah, Washington
February 11, 2009     The Issaquah Press
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February 11, 2009
 

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A6 WEDNESDAY FEBRUARY 11, 2009 THE ISSAQUAH PRESS Sch001b0ard endorses public education reform bills Teachers rally against plan BY CHAhTTELLE LUSEBRINK Issaquah School Board members unanimously voted to endorse two bills supporting education reform, House Bill 1410 and Senate Bill 5444, at a special board meeting Feb. 5. But not everyone is happy with the two bills or their endorsement. Issaquah Education Association union members asked the school board to vote against endorsing the bills,' said Neva Luke, president of the Issaquah Education Association. The reality is very different from the promise," she said, adding that the two bills are like previous legislation in Washington  Providing equity for histori- state regarding education reform, cally disadvantaged children "The fear is that we would enact through early learning and at-risk legislation, that we, as practition- programming. ers, feel is misguided."  Correcting arbitrary funding The two bills stem from studies, disparities among districts in the ideas and recommendations made  current education funding syste by the Joint Task Force on Basic including levy lids and grandfa' Education Finance committee in thered teacher salary schedules. 2007, and the Washington Learns  Moving teachers from a se  Steering Committee in 2005. The two bills seek to implement several of those recommendations into law from each bipartisan com- mittee. So far, changes include: Implementing Core 24 grad- uation requirements, boosting the credit requirements of students from 20 to 24, and providing state resources to meet the require- ments. Recognizing the need for con- tinued professional development opportunities for teachers. iority-based compensation syst to a performance-and-evaluation- based compensation system. Continuing local control to administer school district affa but implementing new accounta- bility systems to ensure local offi- cials are accountable to parents, taxpayers and the Legislature. Phasing in educational plans and changes, including resources to fund them. By endorsing the two bills the resolution says, board members believe "these changes will demon- strably improve P-12 education in our community and throughout Washington state and ensure that graduates of the Issaquah School District are able to compete in a global market." "It breaks my heart that this bill makes teachers feel that we re say- ing, 'You're doing it wrong.' That is not what I'm saying at all," said Kelly Munn, a parent active in edu- cation legislation and a PTSA member. "What I'm saying is that we, as a community and a state, have abrogated our responsibility, we have not funded education and we have not dreamed. That is why I like this bill. It gives me the potential to dream." In a letter to local teachers two days before the special board meeting, Luke called for teachers to "no longer sit back and just watch the action," and to get involved, as much of "the profes- sion as we know it is at stake." The bills "dramatically alters all aspects of K-12 public education, including certification, compensa- tion and collective bargaining," Luke wrote. She said nearly 70 teachers showed up to the meeting. The association has also sent out a peti- tion in opposition to the two bills. Roughly 500 signatures have been collected. While they are supposed to address the basic flaws in the educational finance system, many of those changes haven't been decided or are going to be left up to future committees, the letter said. "It would be as if the state trans- portation committee envisioned a new 520 bridge to be put across the water and it was a dream plan," Luke said. "But they don't have a financial impact statement, they haven,t planned for all the unintended consequences and they are ignoring the advice of the prac- titioners that have to build the bridge. "We would never allow trans- portation to do that," she said. Put that in context, with the fact there is potentially more than an $8 billion shortfall in the state's budget, and it isn't a good idea, she said. "They've come up with a bill that is a dream education system that costs billions on top of what we, have," Luke said. "Right now, we re looking at laying off large numbers of teachers in the state and larger class sizes. Where's the discussion on how to rebuild from that?" Reach Reporter Chantelle Lusebrink at 392-6434, ext. 241, or clusebrink@iss- press, corn. C ONTHIBgTUED VOLUNTEER FLOOD RELIEF Nearly three dozen men, women and teenage members of the Tiger M'oun- rain Ward of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints banded to- gether to help residents after the Snoqualmie River flooded nearby homes. Drew Kenyon and Ryan Howard (above) load a tractor bucket with debris from a flooded home. Ward Bishop Scott Gordon and church member Don Adams (right} discuss garage cleanup with homeowner Patrick Thomas. FEB 14 NEW WINTER SEASONAL MENU Our Classic Italian Menu with a New Section  featurln g =Steak and Chops" MBAR I' neiKhbothood ira[lea 695 NW' Gilman Blvd., lssaquah, WA 425 391-9097 www.LombardisItalian.com - NAULT ....... Town & Country Square !i 1175 NW Gilman Blvd. v q Suite B-4, Issaquah (425) 391-9270 % Illegal FIOM PAGE A1 " few eggs were left are now proba- bly gone. He said he asked the neighbors what they were doing, since most work in the creek is usually done in August or September, when it has the least impact on the salmon. He said the people he talked to were concerned that there may be a structural problem with the bridge. "I told them that was fine," he said, adding he is not a civil engi- neer, but the bridge didn't appear to him to be in imminent danger. "But if there is a structural prob- lem with the bridge, they need to do it the right way, a way that doesn't hurt the kokanee or other Lewis Creek fish." When the neighbors didn't appear to listen to him or stop the work, he said he called the police since it was a Saturday. When police arrived, the resi- dents had no permits granted or on site for the work, Monahan said. The case has been forwarded to Michele Forkner, the city's code enforcement officer, for review with regard to the city's critical areas ordinance and its clearing and grading codes. The case is still under review and no citations have been issued. "Our main goal now is to work KNOW THE lAW Call the city's PublicWorks Department at 837-3400 to know what permits you might need before beginning your next project. with the homeowner to make sure the bridge is properly improved, but we also want to make sure the creek is protected," Monahan said. "Lewis Creek is one of the remain- ing kokanee spawning beds for Lake Sammamish. Although this type of incident doesn't happen very often, she said, work without the proper per- mits or research can have a wide range of effects on the city's salmon bearing creeks. Among those are destruction of fertile salmon beds and loss of habitat. "Any work that involves the city's waterways, the citizen needs to call the city's Public Works office early," Monahan said. "Before they hire a contractor or design their project, they should know what permits they need from the city, and also with the Department of Fish and Wildlife, at the state level. "We're here to work with resi- dents to make sure their work is properly mitigated and properly done in the creeks," she added. Reach Reporter Chantelle Lusebrink at 392-6434, ext. 241, or chsebrink@iss- press.com. Comment on this story at www. issaquahpress, com. Highlands opens new sports medicine, orthopedics clinic Proliance Orthopedics and Sports Medicine opened a new clinic Jan. 26 in the Issaquah Highlands to replace its 23-year- old clinic on Gilman Boulevard. The new facility, at 510 Eighth Ave. N.E, Suite 200, is three stories and will now include an outpatient surgical center, MRI, X-ray and physical therapy along with sur- geon's offices. The expanded building also now supports more surgeons, 14 as opposed to two at the old location. The Gilman clinic is being converted into a business office. The clinic offers orthopedic treatment along with the preven- tion of ffiture health concerns. Orthopedic surgery includes work on the musculoskeletal system, which is made up of the bodys bones, muscles, cartilage, tendons, ligaments and joints. veroe Oeeds a ittle elp ow aad @'Jel... Stress Depression Life Transitions Loss and Grief Relationship Problems Patty Groves, M.A. Issaquah Creek Counseling Center 545 Rainier Blvd. N., Issaquah www.issaquahcreekcounseling.com 425 898-1700 KEEP YOUR RETIREMENT ON SOLID GROUND EVEN IF THINGS AT WORK ARE UP IN THE AIR. lkw things are as stressful as worrying about work. Because it's easy to feel like things are out of control, it's essential to nsider any financial decision carefully. This is especially true when it comes to your retirement savings. Edward Jones can help. We'ti start |ff getting to know your goals. 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