4/5/22 – PTSA Meeting Summary

Principal Tarance Hart is envisioning a Garfield that focuses on equity as it becomes more precise in how it supports students, more oriented toward improving instruction, and more … fun!

Dr. Hart told last night’s PTSA General Meeting via Zoom that “bold and intentional conversations” will lead to changes that will ensure the school is best able to meet each student’s needs.

He described three areas of focus:

  1. Strengthened structures – the systems, structures and processes that make Garfield work. COVID has already changed some of the supports that students need, Dr. Hart said, so it is a good time to adjust how the school handles areas such as behavioral expectations and management (including discipline) and how support staff are deployed. He also noted that progress is continuing on a new partnership with the City of Seattle, the Seattle Community Safety Initiative, that will add volunteers and others to monito the campus during lunch and after hours.
  2. Instructional and student support – a new position, House Administrator, will be created next year to handle some behavioral and discipline issues in order to free up the three Assistant Principals to spend more time on instructional and student support.
  3. Joy! – Dr. Hart noted how hard the year has been for students, in particular. He hopes Garfield can provide a more joyous experience through an increase in awards banquets and other celebrations, rewards for positive behavior, and various activities to be determined.

Dr. Hart also hopes to revitalize Garfield’s tradition of volunteerism, by providing a clearer path to becoming involved. He expects the school by 2022-23 will post a full list of opportunities and offer an orientation. He expects that roles will include mentoring, event support, career exploration, extra-curricular support, student safety support, and more.

Also discussed last night:

  • Dr. Hart said the District is expecting to introduce a set of virtual courses next year, aimed at improving diversity in curriculum. (An example: Latinx literature.) This may result in changes to the GHS schedule, because participating high schools would need to synchronize bell times.
  • These are the final days to donate items for the PTSA Spring Soiree’s silent auction. Most wanted: Special experiences and opportunities to support community businesses. See www.garfieldptsa.org for details on the May 7 evening event. Note: Bidding on silent auction will start about 2 weeks before the event, and bidders don’t need to be present. Want to help with this event? Data entry awaits – contact ghsspringfundraiser@gmail.com
  • PTSA will help ensure that all seniors can get a “graduation” yard sign, regardless of financial barriers. Parent Jean Bryant is leading the effort, and will collect donations. More information soon.
  • Help appreciate our staff May 2-6 with food, flowers and more. If you are interesting in volunteering, contact communications@garfieldptsa.org.