Garfield High School

Gabriel Spitzer

Seattle public high schools will be able to opt out of the controversial Measures of Academic Progress, or MAP tests, starting next year.

The policy change comes after teachers at Seattle’s Garfield High School staged a boycott of the MAP tests in January, blasting the tests for giving unreliable data and for sucking up classroom resources. A half-dozen more Seattle schools have since signed on, and the protest has drawn national and international attention.  

Gabriel Spitzer / KPLU

The standoff over a series of tests mandated by Seattle Public Schools heated up Wednesday, as another high school joined a growing boycott of the tests and district leaders threatened protesters with suspension.

Teachers say the Measures of Academic Progress, or MAP tests, assess material not covered in class, give poor results and swallow up teaching time. Four schools have rebelled against the tests, with Chief Sealth High the latest to join. Superintendent Jose Banda made clear Wednesday what the consequences of that boycott could be: up to 10 days' suspension without pay.

Katie Kennedy

Hundreds of high school students are rallying at the University of Washington in protest of cuts to education. They walked out of their classrooms this afternoon and marched or rode buses to the University District. 

Students from at least five high schools, including Ingraham and Nathan Hale - and even a few students from Tacoma - have banded together for the protest. 

Nick of Time Foundation

A local mom whose teenage son died from sudden cardiac arrest is pushing to make sure the tragedy doesn’t happen to other families. She's part of an effort to check young people across the state for undetected heart conditions. Its largest screening to date is this Wednesday, June 1st, at Garfield High School in Seattle. 

By U.S. Information Agency / Wikimedia Commons

Many of us are happy to have a day off, whenever and wherever we can get it. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is no exception. But besides sleeping in and catching up on chores, there is an opportunity to spend part of the day celebrating the life and values of King, honored for his nonviolent activism in the civil rights movement.

Many of the celebrations take place over three days. And many of them are opportunities to participate in service activities such as EarthCorps' event to remove invasive plants. 

Seattle Office for Education

Now that Seattle schoolchildren have settled in to the new student assignment plan, some changes are on the way.  The effort to place kids at neighborhood schools this year has hit a few bumps. 

Seattle Jazz Ed Advanced Ensemble
Charla Bear

Seattle public schools have some of the best jazz programs in the country.  Student ensembles dominate at national competitions and perform all over the world.  But many kids don’t get to participate because the bands only exist in a few schools.  Now a new program aims to give every middle and high school student in the area an opportunity to learn from renowned jazz teachers.