A Plug for Public School Teachers: Race and Music Class at Washington Middle School

Comments

2
White privilege = knowing how to wear a condom?
3
Dear Kelly and Beth, if you are reading these comments: See what I mean?
4
Omigosh, I love what they're doing! This is great, great coverage, Jen - thank you. I raise my glass of nasty office coffee to them right friggin' now.
5
A lot more diversity was drawn to the program when Mr. Knatt ran the band and jazz band...i miss him. He scared the fuck out of me when i was in the middle school band, but it was tough love :D
6
washington middle also has the APP/neighborhood school division happening. they had a huge influx of "neighborhood" kids this year when the APP program was split and half of their kids went to hamilton. the AP program, we all know, is heavily white and privileged (which is an entirely separate situation from the arts/music issue) and those kids are way more likely to have prior musical experience, private teachers, and the support of their families to pursue music or the arts in general.

it's wonderful what the teachers are doing, encouraging kids who they can be pretty sure wouldn't seek out orchestra on their own. but it's certainly going to be a process, and it is important to keep in mind that the school did undergo a huge change this past year. those ladies are wonderful teachers and really care about their kids, keep it up. :)
7
Great news! Now the kids can learn to find words that rthyme with 'bitch'.
8
"the AP program, we all know, is heavily white and privileged"

actually it's also very Asian. What's their excuse?
10
My son went to Washington last year (he's in APP and went to Hamilton with the split.) I am a single mom and at the time was marginally employed. I felt shamed for not paying for private lessons and the instructor singled my son out for being a "troublemaker." The final straw was when I couldn't afford to buy dress shoes for my son for the concert. They said that he would not be able to perform without dress shoes. The email correspondence was infuriating. They told me I should have asked for charity. The program is elitist. I contacted the Superintendent at the end of the school year and complained. This is what I believe is her solution.
11
Back in Iowa, you could take music lessons, during school time, starting in elementary school.

I'm pretty sure it was free - if there was a charge, it would have had to have been almost nothing for my dad to pay it. I know the instrument rental was cheap. I think it was $2.50 per semester.

They probably still do that. Iowa funds its schools extremely well.

12
" The program is elitist"

Outrageous! We can't have standards that don't allow failure to mimic success!
13
Maybe if you fight "white privilege" enough, then Seattle can be a diverse paradise like Detroit or Gary Indiana or Zimbabwe.
14
Funny how so many Asians can emigrate to this country and within one generation be better educated and employed than so-called 'people of color', with no affirmative action, no quotas, and far lower rates of welfare.

Maybe it has something to do with better values?
16
Whoops wrong thread haw haw
17
Racist idiots - If you tell someone you hate them because of their skin color and culture without even trying to know them, you are the one destroying our society. You are doing this actively. You are the problem. Go look in a mirror. Admit you have a problem.
18
It's not their skin color, it's their culture. How else do you think Obama got elected?
19
@17 go live in Zimbabwe where you will be in a diverse paradise with your pet "people of color".
20
@17 & @18 - I refuse to live my life in fear and hate. I know you can't currently control it, and I do feel sympathy for you, as you must be so very unhappy all of the time. Someone forgot to tell you that you are actually suppose to suppress those unfortunate human instincts, as they are animalistic and unproductive. If we are to evolve as a species, we have to grow up, and that means not prejudging anyone. Let us know when you two are ready to do that.
21
"as you must be so very unhappy all of the time."

Not at all...I live in North Seattle. The only black people I meet are doctors, lawyers and other professionals which is how I like it. Do you think all these white folk live north of the ship canal for the 'diversity'?
23
Seattle gets far better than we deserve from our public school teachers, particularly in the arts. The first-cut, oft-maligned, considered-expendable arts program teachers put up with a lot of marginalizing, and yet continue to send Roosevelt and Garfield bands off to win national awards, and produce actors, singers, artists of all kinds who go on to make great contributions to the world of art.

Those Roosevelt and Garfield kids come from somewhere - it is feeder schools like Washington that keep those programs alive.

But don't ask the general public to either be gracious about praising them nor generous in funding them. We'd rather accuse the teachers of bias (as if segregation in Seattle is their fault), malfeasance, cheating test scores, and organizational incompetence. Teachers cheating standardized tests? Front page. Teachers getting legitimate, hard-earned gains in test scores? Back page... if at all.

I'm glad The Stranger is willing to correct the record and give these hard-working teachers credit!
24
"those unfortunate human instincts, as they are animalistic and unproductive"

when our kids start murdering each other, joining gangs, dealing dope, having babies all over the place with multiple partners, have explosive rates of STDs and generally becoming menaces to society, feel free to come up to Wallingford and chastise our kids.
25
According to the Seattle pi's year-end homicide tally articles, black males ages 14 to 55 (less than 3% of Seattle) committed 14 of the 28 homicides in Seattle in 2008 and 12 of the 21 homicides in Seattle in 2009. 2010 isn't going to turn out any better. Celebrate divershittty!