Amendment To Student Assignment Plan (SAP) sign now

AMENDMENT TO STUDENT ASSIGNMENT PLAN (SAP)
REGARDING BOUNDARIES FOR JOHN STANFORD INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL


We, the undersigned, submit the following amendment to the proposed Student Assignment Plan (SAP) attendance area boundary for John Stanford International School (JSIS):

Set the north and west boundaries at their traditional lines along North 50th Street and Wallingford Avenue North, respectively.

The boundaries, as currently drawn in the SAP, haphazardly dissects a geographically and historically congruous area along the northern boundary of Wallingford, does not promote safe walk zones by forcing families to walk along and across N. 50th Street, and negatively impacts a large number of families with incoming JSIS siblings in the next several years.

We recognize that changing the JSIS boundaries would affect the boundaries of McDonald School as well. We propose that, in conjunction with changing the JSIS northern boundary back to 50th street, the McDonald boundary should be changed to 50th street at the south end and 60th street to the north. This is where McDonald's northern boundary was originally and helps preserve safe walk zones.

We believe the following reasons support our amendment:

1. North 50th Street is a busy and DANGEROUS street. There are few controlled crosswalks and in many places no buffer between the travel lanes and the sidewalk. The average daily traffic load is 28,500 vehicles (per Seattle Dept. of Transportation, 2006), compared with about 24,100 vehicles on North 45th Street. Traffic also moves at a faster speed than on 45th. Just last week there was a hit and run accident while a family was crossing 50th at Keystone (one of the few light-controlled crosswalks).
2. Splitting our neighborhood at the 47th/46th street is wrong. There is a very strong sense of community here that will be divided. The community feeling radiates to the south- meaning we feel a stronger tie to those businesses and homes to the south rather than the north. If Seattle schools hope to foster a sense of community schools this will only undermine that objective.
3. With the current proposed boundary at North 47th/46th Street, the school district will create two separate busing areas within a small geographic area. One bus traveling to JSIS, one to McDonald. This would create a greater transportation expense, counter to the districts goal of reducing transportation costs.
4. Many more siblings will be allowed to attend JSIS if the northern border is North 50th Street. With the currently proposed boundaries, 24 siblings of JSIS students are placed into the McDonald assignment area. If the border moves to 50th, 17 of these siblings would be allowed to attend JSIS with their older siblings. This would support the communities interest in keeping families together, while also supporting the districts goal of creating neighborhood schools.
5. Expanding JSIS borders west to Stone Way pulls in families who have historically been part of the BF Day reference area, and many have sibling interests in BF Day. It seems to make sense to maintain those school connections as attendance projections do not indicate the need to reduce the BF Day attendance area.
6. With the addition of a third kindergarten class this year all reference area families under the old boundary lines were accommodated at JSIS. This would indicate that the current reference area can accommodate the student demand.

We formally introduce this amendment and request that you vote on and approve this amendment to the Student Assignment Plan at the November 18, 2009 Seattle School Board Meeting.

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