Quote of the day

"We are shut up in schools and college recitation rooms for ten or fifteen years, and come out at last with a bellyful of words and do not know a thing. "

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Valley benefactors step up to help Mt Si students

Hi Friends,

Want to let you know what is happening with our grant offer in regard to fostering diversity, tolerance and respect at Mount Si particularly among the student body. We met with Principal Taylor last Friday and suggested that he contact the Snoqualmie Valley Community Network about the idea of assessing the students to find out their issues and ideas surrounding inclusion. How do we know what the kids are thinking unless we ask? Gathering data using an effective assessment tool could be very helpful in planning future programs and assemblies based on what the students need and want.

After doing some research about what assistance might be available, we believe that the Network is an excellent community resource and can best work with the student leadership, student representatives and staff and parent representatives to determine the best approach for conducting a student assessment. The Network has also recently helped to reemploy the Natural Helpers program and are familiar with the lay of the land at Mount Si.

We are very encouraged by Principal Taylor's enthusiasm about our suggestion and are hoping that the staff will support this effort with the students as it takes shape. Principal Taylor plans to contact the Network to see if there is interest in working with the students at Mount Si. It is possible that an assessment is not the best approach but we are confident that if the Network offers its assistance, they can engage the students in developing an effective action plan.

Principal Taylor also outlined plans for working with the staff on issues of teaching controversial subjects...another good, positive idea. He was genuinely appreciative of our offering our assistance and ideas. We assured him that a grant from Dane's memorial fund is available if it would be helpful in fostering a more inclusive culture at Mount Si.

It's an awesome responsibility to be a teacher. We believe teaching is the most challenging AND rewarding of all professions. Both of us started out our adult lives as teachers at the secondary level so we know.... We deeply appreciate your good work. Contact us if there is anything else that we as patrons can do to support Mount Si other than vote in favor of the up-comingbond proposal.

Best regards,

Jerry and Charlotte Rempfer


Anonymous said...

What a great idea!

I think sensitivity training should extend to the administration in this case.

It's nice to know we have such caring neighbors in our community.

Please let me know how I can help.

Dan Ferland

Anonymous said...

In the spirit of valentines Day, I want to send my love and admiration to Kit McCormick. (And the other teachers who inspire critical thinking in our schools). I know all the children in her classroom are safe. I think she inspires the uncomfortable self-reflection that is part of growing up. We, as parents, hope our children will unquestioningly adopt our values and beliefs. But they won't go through life without being challenged. I've seen what freshmen college students do with the reigns of home being loosened: truly wild and scary behavior. Having to reflect on who they are and who they want to be now actually prepares our youth to grow and be stronger smarter college students. Thanks again! Sara Stake.

Anonymous said...

May I suggest that someone contact the Seattle chapter of the Anti-Defamation League. Rob Jacobs is very familiar with Mount Si as a result of his previous affiliation (No Place for Hate) and may be an asset in providing some additional support.