Thursday, October 6, 2011

Seattle education events

The Alliance has recently begun curating an events page as part of our new website.  We aim to develop this as a valuable resource that houses information on events from the Alliance, Seattle Public Schools, and the wider community.

Please let us know if you have any ideas for additions to this page!  Leave a comment on this blog or email me:

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Common Core Standards: what are they and how do they effect our students?

The Common Core State Standards Initiative, which advocates for the adoption of a set of education standards by all U.S. states, articulates the mission of Common Core Standards as: 
"provid[ing] a consistent, clear understanding of what students are expected to learn, so teachers and parents know what they need to do to help them. The standards are designed to be robust and relevant to the real world, reflecting the knowledge and skills that our young people need for success in college and careers. With American students fully prepared for the future, our communities will be best positioned to compete successfully in the global economy." 
What are the implications of these standards?  Watch this video for a good summary of the context and  implications of Common Core. With Washington State having recently adopted the Common Core Standards, and with Washington chosen as one of 20 states that will help develop new national science standards, this is highly relevant to us in Seattle public education.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Public school parents: classroom materials funding available!

On Oct 5th, all Starbucks stores in King County will be giving out free $10 DonorsChoose gift cards that parents and citizens can use to make a donation toward a classroom project posted on the DonorsChoose website. Right now there are nearly 300 Seattle classroom projects listed from which to choose. Through a generous gift of the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation, $500,000 will be made available through these gift cards, and anyone can make additional personal donations if they so choose.

Please consider taking advantage of this great opportunity to support your teachers and your schools. All you need to do is:
  1. Stop by a King County Starbucks on October 5th and pick up a free $10 Donors Choose gift card. 
  2. Go to
  3. Enter your gift code. 
  4. Choose a classroom project at a local public school. 
Important: Gift cards will be applied to projects on a first-come, first-served basis until the grant is spent, so be sure to apply yours soon!

About is a nonprofit that empowers teachers to request and receive needed classroom materials and student learning experiences.

The average teacher project request made of DonorsChoose is for just over $400 in student materials. 70% of these are funded each year by citizens, corporations, and foundations. This school year, DonorsChoose aims to bring $40 million dollars in innovative classroom project requests to life.