Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Support looks and sounds like . . .

At last night's board meeting, we saw what support looks and sounds like with over one hundred people in the room and hallway to support our instrumental music program.  My sense is that the number is probably higher because not all had a chance to get into the room to sign in.  Four parents and two former students spoke on behalf of those in attendance to thank the Board for support over the last two years and to request that the support continues as they work to build the program.

The Tahoma Band Boosters organization understands our current reality and has a vision of what can be given the time and resources to close the gap.  They are being driven by the creative tension generated by the gap and the desire to ensure that the heart and energy behind the band's recent growth and accomplishments continues the positive journey.  It was wonderful to have the energy in the room and the passion these people feel for what our music program is doing for our young people.

Unfortunately, all but a handful left the meeting after their comments with two important agenda items still to be discussed.  Both of the items are related to our over crowded conditions and the need for creating additional housing capacity in our system.  The first item was a presentation focused on a process to provide input to the board from registered voters on a possible November bond measure.  The process would include focus groups followed by a phone survey to give the board feedback and statistical information as they make decisions on what to include on the measure and the timing for the vote.  

The second related item focused on a recommendation to once again make some adjustments to elementary attendance areas.  With changing demographic patterns we are recommending that we shift students from the Lake Wilderness and Rock Creek attendance areas to the Shadow Lake and Glacier Park attendance areas. The number of students in a potential shift is not large compared to some we have done, but if you are one of the families it can create anxiety, stress, and anger.  

Both of these items reflect our current reality of over crowded schools with continued growth in enrollment projections.  We have a vision for a preferred future that is emerging leaving us with the question of how to close the gap.  Where and how do we create the passion we witnessed last night for a vision of the band program around our need for new housing capacity in this system?   How do we fill the board rooms and larger venues with passionate people to support this system need?  It takes a community and thus far, in this area of our work, we have not found answers to close the gap.

1 comment:

John said...

What an amazing world we'd live in if there was always a crowd like that at every school board meeting. The schools should be a gathering point of every community. It was truly awe-inspiring to see the devotion of the Tahoma music community in action last Tuesday. The whole program should be very proud of itself.