Seattle Public Schools, Washington

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Seattle Public Schools
Seattle, Washington
Seattle PS Logo.png
District Profile
Superintendent:Jose Banda
Graduation rate:75.8%
Number of schools:95
Budget: $691.7 million
Website:School Home Page
Board of Education
Board president:Kay Smith-Blum
Board members:7
Term length:4
Seattle Public Schools is a school district in Washington that served 49,660 students during the 2012-2013 school year.[1] This district is the largest by enrollment in the state of Washington. Seattle Public Schools was created in March 1867 with the first school opened in 1870.[2]

About the district

Seattle Public Schools is located in King County, Washington
Seattle Public Schools is located in the City of Seattle in King County, Washington. The population of Seattle was 608,660 according to the 2010 U.S. Census.[3]


Seattle outperforms state averages for higher education achievement and median income while lagging behind in poverty levels. The percentage of city residents over 25 years old with undergraduate degrees (55.8%) exceeds the state average (31.4%). The 2010 U.S. Census calculated Seattle's median income at $61,856 while the state median income was $58,890. Seattle had a poverty rate of 13.2% in the 2010 U.S. Census while the state rate was 12.5%.[3]

Racial Demographics, 2012[3]
Race Seattle (%) Washington (%)
White 69.5 77.3
Black or African American 7.9 3.6
American Indian and Alaska Native 0.8 1.5
Asian 13.8 7.2
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander 0.4 0.6
Two or More Races 5.1 4.7
Hispanic or Latino 6.6 11.2

Presidential Voting Pattern[4]
Year Democratic Vote (%) Republican Vote (%)
2012 68.7 28.3
2008 70.0 28.0
2004 65.0 33.7
2000 60.0 34.4

Note: The United States Census Bureau considers "Hispanic or Latino" to be a place of origin rather than a race. Citizens may report both their race and their place of origin, and as a result, the percentages in each column of the racial demographics table may exceed 100 percent.[5][6]


The current Superintendent of Seattle Public Schools is Jose Banda who has served in the position since July 2012. Banda previously served as Superintendent of Anaheim City School District for four years.[7]

School board

The Seattle Public Schools Board of Directors consists of seven members elected in geographic districts to four-year terms.[8] Members run within their districts during primaries and citywide during general elections. Each member can be compensated $50 per day for district matters with maximum compensation of $4,800 per year.[9]

Seattle Public Schools Map.jpg

Seattle Public Schools Board of Directors
Member District Assumed Office Term Ends
Sharon Peaslee 1 2011 2015
Sherry Carr 2 2007 2015
Harium Martin-Morris 3 2007 2015
Sue Peters 4 2013 2017
Stephan Blanford 5 2013 2017
Marty McLaren 6 2011 2015
Betty Patu 7 2009 2017

School board elections

See also: Seattle Public Schools elections (2015)

Members of the Board of Directors are elected to four-year terms on a staggered basis. Three seats on the board were up for election on November 5, 2013, and four seats are up for election on November 3, 2015.

Public participation in board meetings

The Seattle Public Schools Board of Directors maintains the following policy on public testimony during board meetings:[10]

The Board of Directors of Seattle Public Schools welcomes the public to the business meetings of the Board and dedicates time at these meetings to hear from the public on agenda items and other issues of concern.

It is important for all community members to feel welcome and safe in the Board’s business meetings. Audience members will be expected to treat all attendees with respect and civility, just as Seattle Public Schools expects of students in our schools.

General Rules
Each speaker will have up to two minutes to speak at a regular Board meeting. Speakers addressing agenda items will have preference if the list is full. For special Board meetings, public testimony will only be taken on the scheduled agenda item(s).

The time limits must be observed so that 20 people will be able to speak during the time allotted for public testimony. In order to provide opportunities to address the Board, speakers are allowed only one 2-minute time per meeting. If you are not one of the first 20, you can ask to be added to the wait list.

If you want to give your time to someone else, you must attend the Board meeting and announce this to the Board when it is your turn to speak. The person to whom you cede your time will receive the remainder of your 2 minutes and should speak to the same topic.

If you have handouts to give to the Board, please bring 10 copies and give them to Board staff ahead of the meeting. No one should approach the dais with handouts.

The Board does not take public comments on issues related to personnel or individually named staff at Board meetings; speakers will be ruled out of order by the president. The president will also rule a speaker out of order for the use of name-calling, profanity, racial slurs or threats. Persons who attempt to disrupt the meeting will be asked to leave.

Ground Rules

  • One person is to speak at a time.
  • Comments should be addressed to the Board.
  • Please adhere to the time limit on testimony.
  • The focus of comments should be on issues and solutions.
  • No racial slurs, personal insults, ridicule, or threats will be allowed.
  • All signs brought to meetings are subject to these ground rules.

How to Sign Up for Public Testimony
The order of public testimony will be determined as follows: agenda action items, agenda introduction items, and then items of general interest. The order of agenda items will be alternated between those speaking in favor of a topic and those against the same topic, if possible.

The Board agenda is posted by close of business the Friday before Board meetings. The School Board Office will take sign-ups for the public testimony list starting at 8:00am on the Monday before regular Board meetings and continue until 12:00 noon Tuesday before the meeting. The final list of public testimony will be posted on the Board agenda web site by close of business the day before the regular Board meeting.

To sign up for public testimony, members of the public should e-mail or call (206) 252-0040 and give their legal name, telephone number, e-mail address, and the topic they would like to address. (Since Seattle Public Schools is a public agency, this information will fall into the public domain.) If complete information is not provided, you will not be included on the list. Please note, only the person who will be providing testimony may request the spot.

The School Board Office is not able to contact every person who requests to speak at the meeting. Each person should check the website on Tuesday after 5:00pm to see where they are on the testimony list or whether they are on the waitlist.[11]


The table below displays the budget for Seattle Public Schools:[12]

Expenditures by Category
School Year Staff Expenses Student Services Operational Expenses Debt Service Other Budget Total
Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget
2012-2013 $472,011,410 59.8% $122,364,899 15.5% $110,484,437 14% $84,198,325 10.7% $577,783 0.1% $789,636,854
2013-2014 $353,845,134 51.2% $78,940,315 11.4% $161,364,194 23.3% $46,003,675 6.7% $51,548,479 7.5% $691,701,797
Averages: $412,928,272 56% $100,652,607 14% $135,924,315.5 18% $65,101,000 9% $26,063,131 4% $740,669,325.5

Teacher salaries

Seattle Public Schools employed 2,738 K-12 teachers during the 2012-2013 school year. Teacher salaries are categorized based on higher education achievement, professional development and years of service. A teacher with a Bachelor's degree can earn higher salaries by pursuing graduate courses with raises at 22.5, 45, 90, 135 and 155 quarter credits. The salary schedule also accounts for graduate degrees by providing higher starting salaries and greater potential salaries. The following table details the salary schedule negotiated between the district and the Seattle Education Association for 2012-2013:[13]

Salary structure
Degree level Minimum salary ($) Maximum salary ($)
B.A. 33,401 33,469
B.A. 22.5 33,538 34,767
B.A. 45 + MA 33,538 46,054
B.A. 90 33,538 55,506
B.A. 90 + MA 40,208 57,245
B.A. 135 33,538 57,770
B.A. 135 + MA 40,208 59,508
B.A. 155 + MA 40,208 62,984
Ph.D./Dr. 40,257 64,510


Teachers in Seattle Public Schools are represented by the Seattle Education Association (SEA). The SEA is currently led by Jonathan Knapp. The SEA website has salary schedules and collective bargaining agreements posted along with action and priorities on education issues including: advanced learning, closing the achievement gap, commercialism in schools and No Child Left Behind.[14]

Schools in Seattle Public Schools


The district served 49,660 K-12 students during the 2012-2013 school year. The district experienced a 9.5% increase in enrollment between 2008 and 2012. The following chart details enrollment in the district between 2008 and 2012:[1]

Total enrollment
Year Enrollment Year-to-year change (%)
2008 45,338 -
2009 45,740 0.9
2010 46,810 2.3
2011 48,199 3.0
2012 49,660 3.0

District schools

Seattle Public Schools operates 95 schools listed below in alphabetical order:[15]

Seattle Public Schools
Aki Kurose
APP at Lincoln
Arbor Heights
Bailey Gatzert
Beacon Hill
B.F. Day
Cascade Parent Partnership Program
Catharine Blaine
Center School
Chief Sealth International
Cleveland STEM
Concord International School
Daniel Bagley
Dearborn Park
Denny International
Frantz Coe
Graham Hill
Green Lake
Hamilton International School
Highland Park
Jane Addams
Interagency Academy
John Hay
John Muir
John Rogers
John Stanford International School
K-5 Stem at Boren
Loyal Heights
Martin Luther King Jr.
McDonald International School
Middle College
Nathan Hale
North Beach
Olympic Hills
Olympic View
Pinehurst K-8
Queen Anne
Rainier Beach
Rainier View
Salmon Bay
Sand Point
Schmitz Park
Seattle World School
Skills Center
South Shore
Thornton Creek
Thurgood Marshall
Van Asselt
View Ridge
West Seattle
West Seattle
West Woodland
Wing Luke

Academic performance

The Washington Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction published a state report card for 2011-2012 assessing subject proficiency levels and year-to-year progress for each district. This report card relies on data from the Measurements of Student Progress (MSP) and High School Proficiency Exam (HSPE) to determine if each district meets Annual Yearly Progress (AYP) goals in reading and math. The goal for each district is to meet proficiency goals at all grade levels and student demographics by the 2013-2014 school year.

Seattle Public Schools met the state goal of 95% participation across all grade levels. The district did not meet AYP goals for reading at the elementary or middle school levels.[16]

MSP/HSPE Proficiency

Student Proficiency Levels, 2011-2012
Grade Reading (%) Math (%)
3 78.6 67.1
4 72.0 64.6
5 70.9 65.2
6 76.6 65.8
7 62.6 65.6
8 72.8 61.6
10 80.3 -

Adequate Yearly Progress

AYP Achievement, 2011-2012
Grade Meet Reading AYP? Meet Math AYP?
Elementary School No Yes
Middle School No Yes
High School Yes Yes


Contract negotiations

Members of the Seattle Education Association (SEA) rejected a contract offer from the district during an August 26, 2013 meeting. Teachers were concerned about limited salary growth, crowded classrooms and new evaluation methods in the new contract.[17] District officials and the SEA avoided a potential strike on September 3 as teachers voted to approve a new two-year contract that increased pay by 2% and included test scores in teacher evaluations.[18]

Growing classroom sizes

In August 2013, district officials and the Board of Directors proposed increasing the maximum number of students per classroom to anticipate continued growth in enrollment. The proposal would have increased enrollment limits by two students per middle school teacher and ten students per high school teacher. The SEA criticized the proposal as problematic for the student experience, which could complicate ongoing contract negotiations with the district.[19] On August 22, the Board of Directors voted to remove this proposal from negotiations with the SEA.[20]

Sexual abuse claims

Six current and former students at Seattle Public Schools are seeking damages totaling $29 million due to instances of sexual abuse in the district. Five students are pursuing $25 million to settle abuse claims against former teacher Phil McGee. McGee was convicted in 2008 of abusing four children and claimants argue that the district did not react quickly enough to stop these instances. A sixth student is seeking $4 million from the district after sexual abuse claims against a fellow student.[21]

School shutdown

In response to the cuts to education in the FY2012 state budget, the district planned a one-day shut down on Aug. 31, 2011, prior to the start of the school year, and closed early on another day when school was in session. Employees took the time as furlough days.[22]

Superintendent firing

Former Superintendent Maria Goodloe-Johnson was fired without cause in March of 2011 after nearly four years as superintendent after a state audit found that the district spent $1.5 million on services with questionable purpose and $280,000 on services it never received and gave benefit to a private company.[23]

Contact information

Seattle PS Logo.png
Seattle School District
Attention: Board of Directors
MS 11-010
PO Box 34165
Seattle, WA 98124-1165
Phone: (206) 252-0040

Website evaluation

Elected Officials
Administrative Officials
Public Records
Background Checks

School district websitesGuide.png
Transparency grading process
Main article: Evaluation of Washington school district websites

Last rated on Jan. 2, 2013.

The good

  • Budget
    • The most current budget is listed.
    • Budgets are archived back to 2007-2008.[24]
  • Administrative Officials
    • Department heads are listed for each department.[25]
    • Contact information for administrative officials is provided including a mailing address, phone number, and personalized email.
  • Elected Officials
    • Elected officials are listed with a mailing address, phone number and personalized email.[26]
  • Meetings
    • Meeting minutes are archived for 8 years.
    • Meeting agendas are archived for 8 years.[27]
    • A meeting calendar is available and names the times and locations of public meetings.[28]
    • Meeting videos are available.[29]
  • Audits
    • The most recent audit is posted.
    • Audits dating back to 2005 are available.[30]
  • Contracts
    • Collective bargaining agreements are posted.[31]
    • Bids and RFPs are posted online.[32]
    • Approved contract statements are provided for vendors.[33]
  • Public Records
    • The public information officer is identified and maintained by the public records officer. This person provides a mailing address, phone number and personalized email.
    • A public records form is provided.
    • A fee schedule for documents is provided.[34]
  • Taxes
    • Tax revenues are broken down by federal, state, and local funding in the budget.
    • Local taxes, like property taxes, are available online.[35]
  • Academics
    • Academic performance reports for the school are posted online.[36]
  • Background Checks
    • The criminal background check policy and teacher certification requirements are posted online.[37]

The bad

  • Budget
    • Budgets are not archived for the past three years.

See also

External links

Suggest a link


  1. 1.0 1.1 Washington Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, "Student Enrollment Cohort Projections, 2012" accessed August 1, 2013
  2. Seattle Public Schools, "Early History of Seattle Public Schools," accessed August 1, 2013
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 U.S. Census, "Quick Facts: Seattle," accessed August 1, 2013
  4. King County Elections, "Election Archive," accessed August 1, 2013
  5. United States Census Bureau, "Frequently Asked Questions," accessed April 21, 2014
  6. Each column will add up to 100 percent after removing the "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin percentages, although rounding by the Census Bureau may make the total one- or two-tenths off from being exactly 100 percent. This Ballotpedia page provides a more detailed explanation of how the Census Bureau handles race and ethnicity in its surveys.
  7. Seattle Public Schools, "Jose L. Banda," accessed August 1, 2013
  8. Seattle Public Schools, "School Board," accessed August 1, 2013
  9. Seattle Public Schools, "Board Member Compensation & Expenses," June 1, 2011
  10. Seattle Public Schools, "Public Testimony," accessed October 18, 2013
  11. Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
  12. Seattle Public Schools, "Budget Office," June 20, 2012
  13. Seattle Education Association, "Salary Schedule 2011-12," accessed August 1, 2013
  14. Seattle Education Association, "Actions & Priorities," accessed August 1, 2013
  15. Seattle Public Schools, "School Directory," accessed August 1, 2013
  16. Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, "Washington State Report Card," accessed August 1, 2013
  17. KOMO News, "Seattle, South Kitsap school districts vote to reject contracts," August 26, 2013
  18. Capitol Hill Seattle Blog, "Teachers ratify contract, Seattle Public Schools start new year Wednesday," September 3, 2013
  19. KPLU, "Teachers Slam Seattle Schools' Proposal to Increase Class Size," August 14, 2013
  20. The Seattle Times, " Seattle schools drop proposal to increase class sizes," August 22, 2013
  21. KUOW, "Seattle School District Faces $29 Million In Sex Abuse Liability," July 22, 2013
  22. The Seattle Times "Seattle schools plan one-day shutdown to help absorb state budget cuts" July 21, 2011
  23. Seattle Weekly, "Maria Goodloe-Johnson's Firing Is Two Years Late; Will School Board Please Fire Itself, too?," accessed June 19, 2012
  24. Budgets, Accessed: Jan. 2, 2012
  25. Seattle Public Schools, Staff Directory, Accessed: December 24, 2012
  26. Seattle Public Schools, Elected Officials, Accessed: December 24, 2012
  27. Seattle Public Schools, Meeting Minutes and Agendas, Accessed: December 24, 2012
  28. Seattle Public Schools, Meeting Calendar, Accessed: December 24, 2012
  29. Seattle Public Schools, Meeting Video, Accessed: December 24, 2012
  30. Seattle Public Schools, Audits, Accessed: December 24, 2012
  31. Seattle Public Schools, Collective Bargaining Agreements, Accessed: December 24, 2012
  32. Seattle Public Schools, Bids, Accessed: December 24, 2012
  33. Seattle Public Schools, Awarded Bids, Accessed: December 24, 2012
  34. Seattle Public Schools, Public Records, Accessed: December 24, 2012
  35. Seattle Public Schools, Tax Levy, Accessed: December 24, 2012
  36. Seattle Public Schools, District Scorecards, Accessed: December 24, 2012
  37. Seattle Public Schools, Background Checks, Accessed: December 24, 2012