Parent Speech at Full Force Friday

Families, students, unions and neighboring teachers showed their strong support for the striking KEA teachers as they joined them on the line.


20 Responses to “Parent Speech at Full Force Friday”

  1. Kent Teacher Says:

    I, a Kent teacher, applaud the parents who have been willing to stand up for their child’s right to an education that will lead to successful learning. The District has spent your money training teachers to use “Best Practices” to improve the classroom environment but has not allowed time for teachers to implement the practice of small group teacher instruction, individual conferencing and tutoring. Having meetings to discuss trivial items and using planning time to fill out paperwork has taken away time with students who need to meet with their teachers. Even if teachers are forced back to work, I hope the parents continue to fight for teacher/student time during the school day. I love my students and have spent 23 years creating a strong learning classroom. However, during the past five years I have noticed a change in the direction of teacher time. I have more paperwork and less time to research and prepare lessons that challenge my students and tutor those who need extra help. Each year brings a new group of children with unique learning styles. Teachers need time to understand how best to help each individual succeed. Parents want their child to succeed and so do teachers; together we can be a powerful team. Parents-Kids-Teachers United!

  2. Resolute Says:

    I cannot express how touched and very blessed I feel by seeing these parents stand up for their teachers and their kids in this way. You guys are the reason I love where I am and the reason I keep fighting for what is right for the kids. Thank you, thank you and a hundred times thank you.

  3. Marvel Galvin Says:

    To Whom It May Concern,

    I am a parent in the Kent School District. I have raised one child who attended Kent schools, and have since continued to volunteer in an Elementary classroom. Since my child is now in college, it would be easy to take the position that “It’s not my concern anymore”. But I believe that educating our young people concerns us all, and that there are profound challenges which compromise the educational process that many people simply don’t see.

    I have observed what has become an all-too-common scenario in early-education classrooms. There is invariably at least one ELL student, and often more than one student who has psychological, emotional, and/or behavioral challenges. Each of these circumstances requires additional time and attention from the teacher, upsets fellow classmates, and disrupts the learning process. Over the last ten years of volunteering, I have yet to be in a classroom where there wasn’t at least one child who fits this description, with increasing occurrence over time. I have volunteered as a classroom assistant for teachers who give generously of their time and financial resources in an effort to optimize an educational experience which is compromised by these challenges, as well as many others, such as learning disabilities, hygiene problems that require intervention, lack of parental involvement or cooperation, etc..

    It is common sense that when teachers are dealing with these complex issues, the quality of education is directly correlated to class size. If we do not support our teachers by listening to what their daily experience is, we will have to accept a big part of the responsibility for a decline in not only the educational experience of our children, but a general decline in the overall standings in the Kent School District. We will continue to have great teachers leave for other school districts because of these, and other concerns. Those who can find any possible way of taking an early retirement or can find another job will do so, and many of those who stay will decide to give less of their time and concern, because they simply cannot continue to provide quality education under the increasing weight of these challenges and in an environment where they feel they are not valued

    We say we want “No Child Left Behind”. We want each child to receive the time, attention, and care required to thrive in our educational system. Yet we are saying “NO” to the most basic needs of the most vital link in this whole process. I fear that the negotiating process in the teachers’ strike is becoming a power struggle rather than an opportunity to come to basic terms where “everyones” needs are met. Our new Superintendent has an opportunity to look at what is working well in other districts and implement those practices here for the benefit of district’s students and our community. I hope he can step back, look at the whole picture, listen to the needs of his team, and take the necessary steps to address the issues on the table. The Kent School District used to be preferred by our teachers over Tahoma and Auburn.This is no longer the reality. We can change that!!

    Marvel Galvin

    • In Our School Says:

      Thank you so much.

    • Anonymous Says:

      I don’t think this could have been said any better. I think that as a parent, if you have not spent time in a classroom on a fairly regular basis, you really cannot speak to what is wrong with the teachers’ position. Infact, you would probably see what is so right about it.

  4. aggravated Says:

    I’m confused. The district just sent a postcard (two actually, one for each kid…). Granted the cost (paper, printing, 28 cent mail–) isn’t a HUGE amount… but … hm…

    The postcard is announcing that School Is Starting On Wednesday September 9. I’m not trying to be incendiary, but I thought we (KEA teachers) weren’t voting on anything until Monday. Yet… the postcard is marked 9/4.

    As a community member and parent, I am appalled at the posturing and political games being played by everyone at this point. I am a union member and a supporter, but this is about children and our education system. It’s not supposed to be about political nonsense. The Monday vote, coupled with this faux-“announcement,” is toying with the lives of the community. I don’t see how the union can “back down” now. But school needs to start. Support staff need to work. The district needs to fall on its sword. Get on with it.

    I beg everyone involved in the negotiations: please remember you’re servants of these children and THIS community. You work FOR the schools– you’re not students in them.

    • A concerned parent Says:

      The K.S.D. probably sent out the postcards after the judge ruled that the teachers needed to go back to work on Tuesday. They are assuming the teachers are going to do what the judge ruled so as to set a good example to our children. It would be irresponsible to do what the court just ruled as illegal.

      • I wrote Vargas Says:

        I wrote Vargas and said this was a petty and divisive ploy to aggravate parents and teachers. His response was that parents must be informed.

        He knows darn well that court orders like these are ignored all the time. He should have said, regarding the court order school may open 9/9, the teacher’s vote on Monday. This probably would have won some support.

        And why send out two?

  5. teacher Says:

    Thank you Kent parents, students, and community for your support!

    With Heartfelt Thanks and Appreciation,

    A Kent Teacher

  6. ksdteachermom Says:

    As a parent and as a teacher I was proud to stand with both groups yesterday. I just hope someone is listening!
    I am also very concerned about the district stating that we WILL have school next week. The vote has not occurred yet! I am receiving double copies of all KSD mailings- How much is that costing the district?

  7. Julie Says:

    Wow! Thank you so much, Parents! It means so much to watch this video, and to know the support is there. Thank you.

  8. Cici Says:

    Lots of waste in KSD –

    Nothing has been decided – why send out messages at this point –

    I was told by a principal to not expect anything to be settled by 9/14 at earliest.

    So much propaganda going on – grow up both sides and get back to work!

  9. Parent and Staff Says:

    One of the reasons we moved to Kent was to become part of the school district which, at that time, had an excellent reputation. Over the years, I have spent much time as a classroom volunteer and now as an employee of the district, and can empathize with all concerned. I am perplexed by the waste of resources by the district in postal mailings and telephone messages, however.

    It is wonderful to know there are so many concerned parents showing their support!

  10. In Our School Says:

    The union has been cooperating and bargaining in good faith. Please, parents and supporters, you must read our website to get the latest news and to fully understand what our union is up against. The District makes our union bargainers wait at the table for an answer. So who is really dragging their feet?

    Go here:

  11. Disappointed Says:

    It is so sad to see that young children were brought out to the picket lines! This is not their fight. some of the children shown could barely hold the sign, let alone understand what is going on!!

  12. question Says:

    I only have one kid in the district, and got two postcards (28 cents each) and two letters (44 cents each), that all say school starts wednesday (as though that is decided). I figure w/ our school population, they sent out 10,000+ of these, more if they are erroneously doubled, and just spent about a half a teachers annual salary. KSD Guys, we have news that can communicate specifics of when school starts. This was a total waste of money.

    • Resolute Says:

      My husband and I also each receive district mailings as we are both teachers in the district. This is also true for other teachers at my school who are both employees and parents. One gal gets one for her husband and three for herself.

  13. Teacher / Parent Says:

    In reply to the “waste” argument . . . if the teachers were not striking, the district wouldn’t even have to notify parents of the change in the start date of school. I am very disappointed in the union choosing to instigate a strike, especially at this time given the state of the economy, recent budget concerns, and laying off then rehiring several teachers at the end of last school year. A teacher strike is illegal . . . period. Find another way to fight for what you think is right. I have been a teacher in the Kent School District for about 11 years and there is a lot of things to be happy about and also to gripe about. BUT, I feel that the union is misusing their power.

    • A concerned parent Says:

      Amen to that. You are blessed to have good jobs, doing what you love. You live in a beautiful area. Please just go back to work and things will work out.

  14. wanting this over Says:

    I was in support of the teachers fighting for smaller classes, but when they’re going to dishonor a Judge and break the law, I have a problem with that and the message it sends my children.

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