School talks: Less mystery
A Seattle Public Schools negotiator tells Publicola that the district has dropped its proposal to cut a weekly hour of paid planning time for elementary school teachers. Clover Codd, a district executive in charge of strategic planning, said the extra time for collaboration will pay dividends in educational quality. She also explained that the district's general pay increase is 4 percent over the proposed two-year contract, with 2 percent coming each year. Seattle Education Association President Jonathan Knapp expressed surprise that Codd talked about any details. Isn't it good for the district to let the public know more about what's up? It's certainly good reporting by Publicola.
One out of every six households in Seattle now is shared by people who are unrelated. The Seattle Times' super-neat FYI Guy column notes that the number of shared househioled in Seattle ranks third in the nation — right behind San Franciso and Boston. FYI Guy Gene Balk writes that "roommate living arrangements are becoming increasingly common as folks try to cope with Seattle’s soaring rents. There are now about 47,000 households shared by two or more unrelated people in Seattle — a jump of more than 2,300 in the past three years, according to market data firm Experian." Soaring rents, indeed ... and maybe stagnating wages?
Snohomish jail adds a doc
The Snohomish County Jail, which has been plagued by eight inmate deaths since 2010, is hiring a doctor to improve medical treatment there, according to The Herald. Sheriff Ty Trenary told the paper that he had sought advice from Pierce County, which he said has dealt with similar challenges. Trenary said the doctor will start right after Labor Day weekend and work three days a week. He hopes to make the position full time next year. The doctor will advise the county on how many more nurses to hire. Trenary said the county will also be more cautious about accepting inmates with serious health issues from other jurisdictions.
Sea-Tac: Welcome to America. Now, wait.
Seattle-Tacoma International Airpport has seen a nice uptick in international flight arrivals, but there's a downside: The News Tribune reports that the extra flights are creating issues with gate assignments, baggage handling and capacity on the underground tram that circulates among terminals. The port of Seattle, the airport's operator, is taking some coping measures, including hiring additional baggage handlers. But the preferred solution is a new international arrivals facility with a price tag of $300 to $400 million. As reporter John Gillie notes, the port''s worried about losing traffic to other cities. Makes sense. But, while they're throwing around numbers like $400 million, why don't port officials make wages for all workers comparable to those at other large airports on the West Coast?
Elephant talks: Getting tense
Friends of Woodland Park Zoo led a small demonstration this afternoon before a zoo task force met to determine the future of its three elephants. Alyne Fortgang of the Friends group expressed concern that the task force's membership and choice of people to hear from is heavily tilted toward keeping the elephants rather than sending them to a sanctuary, as animal rights groups and the Seattle Times editorial board prefer. A zoo spokesperson referred us to an outside public affairs representative for comment, but the rep was not immediately available.
Troll: the movie!
Seattlepi.com has been covering the troll — the real one, so to speak, in Fremont — and the about-to-debut movie on its construction: "Hall of Giants: The Story of Fremont and the Troll." On Tuesday, the news site posted a nice photo gallery (very flattering, in our opinion) and a trailer for the film, which will be shown at the SIFF Cinema Uptown on Sept. 12. Details and ticket information are here.
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