Sunday, March 31, 2024

Minutes from 3/5/24 Meeting

HiCap Parents Council

March Meeting

District Office

3/5/2024 - 10 AM - 12 Noon


In Person Attendance: Carson S, Ashley W., Austina, Liz P, Jen C., Terra, Amity, Liz P.

Zoom Meeting Attendance: Veronica W, Faustina, Julienne, Angie H, Elizabeth W., Sean Q., Kungpern W., Vanita D.,

Zoom Meeting Late Arrivals: Imen, Elisa, Holly M, Karen S., Nikhat

Secretary: Liz P.

NEXT MEETING: Tuesday, April 16th



     None this month.

     If you have recommendations, please send to Carson.

     Next month may look at middle school HiCap courses and value of having HiCap students in differentiated classrooms.

Amity Updates

     Regional meetings are complete.

-       Amity feels they went well and were a good use of time.

-       There were no surprising questions.

-       Zoom meeting will be posted. Amity will let us know when it is posted.

-       Maywood and Wellington were pushing to start Hicap services next academic year. This will not happen due to items that need to be completed (construction, planning related, etc.). (Note: New CFO and new fiscal process requires changes like these to begin in December at the latest.)

     Professional Development

     Recent Session for ELA

     One teachers from each school where integrated program is; about 15 educators

     These educators were not EAP teachers in the past

     A positive session where teachers reported rich conversations in the classroom and being impressed by what the students are contributing to discussion (high level than anticipated)

     When the teachers can work together as a grade level team, they seem to function best

     There is no one way that schools are approaching this (in regards to if teachers are partnering, working as a grade level team, etc.). It depends on number of kids that need to be served, how many classrooms are in the grade in general, etc.

     Lockwood ex. from Jenn C: teachers are reporting that they love the rollout. Second grade team is considering dividing into quartiles (so additional differentiation beyond just EAP & Gen Ed; 4 levels).

     Amity notes that individual school differences are ok, SO LONG as HiCap students continue to receive the services they need to to prepare them for middle school. (Amity is working with Lockwood.)

     Rolling PD over the next several years. All new integrated schools will get 4 sessions of professional development. Schools that received PD this year will get 2 sessions next year.

     Different schools are requesting different topics for PD.

     Currently, the PD focus has been digging into curriculums that NSD already has so they can be used fully and HiCap kids can be better served.

     Final Testing Thoughts/Feedback

     Spacing out the testing sessions continues to be an issue in some cases.

     Would be good for schools to have backup IPads that are charged.

     School needs to provide at least 30 minutes buffer before the end of the test and the end of the school day. (Ex. Kokanee was giving proctor pressure to get students back to the classroom to pack up and get final notes from teacher, etc.)

     Riverside could be installed on all IPads

     Angie: Riverside reports that the browser version on Chrome & IPads is actually more stable than the app version. (Note: We could create a QR Code).

     We have Riverside for at least 1 more year.

     Test proctoring is a paid position. Office starts getting proctors ready in the fall.

     Process for training could be better. Even when proctor is placed with a mentor proctor, they are often assigned to different rooms.

     Multidisciplinary Selection Team (MST)

     Coming up on the 13th.

     45 appeals that will be reviewed this year

     To appeal, student must have passed screening test (and they did not meet standards on IOWA)

     Vast majority will not get decision overturned

     Best items to submit for review would be a letter about an extenuating circumstance (ex. Grandparent died on day of test) or test scores that show extreme anomaly.

     Results should be available to families by the 22nd

     Middle School Services

     For at least ten years, conversations have been happening at middle schools regarding wanting different service delivery for HiCap students

     Does the Hicap Council have a position about middle school AAP classes?

     No, not officially. But something related from the past would be

     Alternative view available from

     Skyview Middle School (feeds into North Creek)

     Already have some differences about their service delivery. Generally, they are advocates for having a spectrum of learners in each classroom.

     Out in front for wanting to change service delivery in ‘24 - ‘25 academic year. Met with District Officials and were told No. Came back and still wanted to make a change. They were instructed by Superintendent Tolley to write a briefing paper.

     Proposals: 1 - HiCap students would be clustered in integrated classrooms; 2 - Do away with AAP for science and social studies

     Goal for educators to have balanced classrooms

     Amity suggests caution with further changes in middle schools as there have been many changes at this level for years.

     HiCapCouncil may want to start learning more so we can ultimately take a position on this. Sean, Skyview MS rep, is interested. Ashley and Liz P. have offered to have discussion with interested parents. Asked that Amity supply info for April Discussion question/article.

Council Questions/Updates

     “It feels like there is a lot of pressure for 8th grade students in the highest math track to retake Algebra II/Trig when whey get to high school (unless, as stated to one class “they have a high A and the teacher’s recommendation to move on.) They were also told that College in the High School classes are equivalent to AP courses and that they should not take an AP class and a CHS class concurrently during their freshman year. (So they shouldn’t take Precalc 1 & 2 along with something like AP Physics 1 or AP World History.) Doing so requires students and parents to sign something equivalent to an acknowledgement of going against medical advice.”

     “Concerns that some families/staff are having more challenges with the adjustment to PreAlgebra 1 & 2.”

     There have been big changes to the program/curriculum and elementary educators and families could be facing new challenges.

     It is essentially required for teachers to be teaching math every single day.

     Hicap Council’s position has always been communicating to parents that if your child qualifies for a spot in HiCap, you should strongly consider accepting it. But this should ve revisited given the math leap. It may not be best to recommend students who qualify in fifth grade to join the accelerated math (2 ½ year jump, essentially), particularly without working outside of the classroom to catch up.