Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Well, That's Just Dumb

Two Seattle girls, twins in fact, were assigned to different elementary schools.
Annika and Nicole Jewett are twins who live in the same house, their beds just two feet apart. Their mother never dreamed they'd be assigned to different schools for kindergarten this fall.
Stephanie Jewett listed the same three schools in the same order on each girl's application. Made a note that the girls are twins, and told the enrollment staff the same thing.

When Annika was assigned to Bryant Elementary, and Nicole to Wedgwood, Jewett initially thought it was a mistake.

It wasn't.

In one of the stranger quirks in the Seattle School District's convoluted student-assignment system, twins can be assigned to different schools, despite the district's policy to keep siblings together.

Turns out the sibling-preference policy applies only when one child in a family already attends a school. In that case, a younger sibling is almost always a shoo-in if seeking the same school (and applying for an entry grade, such as kindergarten).

Twins do receive something called "sibling linkage," a step down from sibling preference. The Jewetts didn't even get that — but more on that later.

The district has offered the twins a chance to attend a third school: John Rogers Elementary, according to Jewett. It's one of the schools that still has space after the district placed everyone else who applied on time. But Rogers wasn't one of the family's choices.

To Jewett and others, the whole situation makes no sense.

Why would twins be treated differently from siblings of different ages?

"It looks like there's a glitch in the program," said Lisa Bond, a longtime parent activist who's worked with parent-teacher organizations at the state and local level.

School Board member Harium Martin-Morris called it a flaw that needs fixing.

"When you think about it, it's not right," he said.
Gee, you think!!!???

Like the headline said, that's just fraking dumb!!! There are stronger words to be used, but I try to keep things clean here.

Hat Tip: Darren.

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