At the just-finished Seattle School Board workshop releasing the proposed maps for the new assignment plan (see a description here), it was clear that board members are thinking about how they're going to explain one aspect of the plan to the public: the proposal to create new schools by reopening five buildings. Yup, you read that right. Having just finished the second of two painful rounds of closing schools, the district has now realized that it doesn't have enough capacity for a projected uptick in enrollment. (You can thank the economy, which has sucked students out of private schools.)
Undoubtedly sensing the cognitive dissonance among the public, several board members asked for data with which to arm themselves in discussions. And while some wondered whether we might need even more schools given the projected growth, board member Peter Maier sounded a cautious note. "Reopening five buildings is a big deal," he said. "It's something we do not do lightly." One would hope not, because the last thing the district needs is to set itself up for more closures.