A letter from a concerned citizen about Proposition 1B and a City of Seattle Department of Education


“For the fourth year in a row, the state auditor’s office has slammed the Seattle’s Human Services Department over its management of grant funds.”

I receive information, opinions and concerns from people around the country. Some people want to remain anonymous and I respect the request.

This letter came to me from a concerned citizen who lives in Seattle:

A letter from a concerned citizen

As you know, I’ve been concerned about the city’s pre-K Initiative 1B.

The City of Seattle will form a Department of Education. If the city’s pre-K Initiative 1B passes, pre-K programs will be overseen by the City of Seattle Department of Education. The city plans on staffing the Department of Education. by utilizing employees from Seattle’s Human Services Department. From the City of Seattle website:

“For the last several months, the Murray Administration has been working to shape the new department responsible for supporting early learning, K-12 and higher education in Seattle. Most of the positions in the new department would be filled by existing city employees moving from Seattle’s Human Services Department, Office for Education and other organizations.”

The new department would house 38 employees and manage a budget of $48.5 million, including $30 million each year from the voter-approved Families and Education Levy.

It is further troubling that the city has continual audit findings with the Department of Health and Human Services. See: State audit slams Seattle Human Services Department

“For the fourth year in a row, the state auditor’s office has slammed the Seattle’s Human Services Department over its management of grant funds.”

Also, according to Burgess, the system won’t be ready for a year or two so what happens between now and 2016 with preschoolers if Proposition 1B passes? When will this program really begin?

-Concerned Citizen

I would like to add my own questions:

Did the good people of Seattle understand the plans that were already congealing to roll out a city Department of Education when they voted for the levy? Did they know they would be paying for another overlay of bureaucracy filled in by existing city employees with no experience in education?

I don’t think so. I had not heard of this when I was voting, did you? In fact, shouldn’t this have been decided by the people and not just the Mayor, a politician, and Councilmember Burgess who came out of Law Enforcement and not Education?

Dora Taylor





  1. This is very concerning news.

    I remain disturbed the the city’s proposed administrative and administrative salary structure. There is a proposal to hire 42 administrators for every 50 students. There are many administrative salaries $150K and beyond.

    For administrative structure- please see Exhibit D- p.4. For salary structure, please see Attachment E- page 24.


    The city has not released further documentation regarding this issue.

    Clearly, the city needs to clean their own house.

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