Mayor Durkan is defunding and discontinuing crucial K-12 public education equity programs by not including them in the upcoming Seattle Families and Education Levy.
Examples of programs that have received notices that they’ve been cut from the Families and Education Levy are:
(1) SPS’s Family Support Program– Family Support Workers ensure that students and their families have access to basic needs; i.e. clothing, food and housing resources, provide emotional and behavioral support, serve as a link for parents to engage in the school community and assist them with referrals to community agencies, and
(2) a middle school close-the-gap equity program. I’ve heard from parents at Hawthorne Elementary and Eckstein Middle School about the notices that the schools received about these programs being cut from the Families and Education Levy, which completely defunds these programs.
It appears that Mayor Durkan is redirecting the Families and Education Levy to preschool and 2-years free college at the expense of K-12 public school wrap-around services.
Defunding K-12 equity programs is unacceptable! We need to mobilize parents, students, and school communities to take action and demand that the City of Seattle stop defunding K-12 public school programs.
The Seattle City Council can and should be taking action on this and insisting that Mayor Durkan cease these cuts.
The City Council needs to hear from parents on this.
A recent poll on the upcoming levy that floated the idea that the Families and Education Levy may be $650 Million over 7 years. It’s astonishing to me that the city would consider a levy for such a sum–all while defunding and discontinuing necessary educational programs and wrap-around services, such as Family Support Workers.
Family Support Workers mainly serve families of color, immigrant and low income families.