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Community Engagement and Equity Expert Input

King County is committed to creating communities where all people have equitable opportunities to thrive. Our strategies are to invest upstream and where needs are greatest and in fostering community partnerships.

Our Equity and Social Justice shared values guide and shape our work. We are:

  • Inclusive and collaborative 
  • Diverse and people focused 
  • Responsive and adaptive 
  • Transparent and accountable 
  • Racially just 
  • Focused upstream and where needs are greatest

Our values drive us to seek community engagement and participation in shaping policies and programming. When community members have voice and power in the decisions that impact their communities, and express it through civic engagement and leadership, it leads to broader community and policy changes that assure racial, health, and economic equity. Our goal during the community engagement period with PSTAA is to build community-driven partnerships that allow us to gain input into how strategies and goals may impact communities of color, and other communities. This will help us to move towards greater racial, economic, and health equity that enables all people in King County to thrive and prosper.

We will also be engaging experts who are deeply involved in the fields of education and equity. Our work with these experts is designed to ensure a comprehensive equity approach is applied in the overall development and implementation of PSTAA. Equity participants will review of equity impacts of PSTAA. A minimum of 8 – 10 equity specialists will be interviewed who have experience in early learning, K-12, postsecondary education, achievement/opportunity gap issues, foster youth, homeless youth, and/or youth of color.

Potential Strategy Areas for PSTAA Investment

Subsequently, based on Motion 15029 and further discussion, King County developed a list of nine potential strategy areas to investigate further for potential funding:

  1. Increasing access and success in postsecondary, via a “promise scholarship” program with a focus on:

    a. Supportive services in high school to help students prepare for and persist in college;
    b. Advisory support, completion coaching, or other necessary services at community or technical colleges;
    c. Scholarships that target the highest-need students and programs serving low-income youth, youth of color, youth aging out of foster care, or homeless youth; and
    d. Re-engaging youth who have dropped out of high school in education and employment.

  2. Supporting career-connected education in K-12 schools, including through expansion of career academy models at the middle or high-school level to combine academic and career content from industries like technology or health care.
  3. Support elementary and middle schools in planning and launching innovative teaching methods that emphasize problem-based learning and connect classroom learning to careers.
  4. Constructing, maintaining and renovating facilities to support early learning programs.
  5. Collocating early learning centers with affordable housing, including flexible, mixed-use space to meet the multiple needs of children and youth with limited access to services.
  6. Programming or facilities to support children and youth who are homeless, in the foster care system, in the child welfare system, involved in the juvenile justice system or otherwise vulnerable or underserved.
  7. Supporting asset-building strategies for youth, including children's educational savings accounts.
  8. Identifying innovative strategies to empower students to be change agents in their schools and communities, who can identify and address social and racial injustice through advocacy and organizing.
  9. Training educators in the effects that economic status and institutional racism have on educational outcomes and economic mobility.

Questions for Discussion include: 

  • Of the current strategies, please list those with the highest priority in your community.
  • Are there possible solutions missing from the listed strategies?
  • Of the strategies most important to your community, explain how they can best address racial disparities in education?
  • On strategy #6: Programming or facilities to support children and youth who are homeless, in the foster care system, in the child welfare system, involved in the juvenile justice system or otherwise vulnerable or underserved.
    • Do you have specific recommendations about how we can improve education outcomes for these populations?
    • Have you seen a successful model that you would recommend for us to consider?
    • Are there other populations that you think are critical to call out in in this strategy?
  • What should some of the elements of the criteria be for the council for how they allocate the funds?
  • How should we allocate funds to the strategies?
  • What are your thoughts about how the strategies should be implemented equitably (locations, communities, etc.)?

Community Meeting Schedule

The following community listening sessions were held in the Spring of 2019 to help identify problems facing communities and to find out how we can better improve education equity in your community. Thank you to everyone who engaged in this process, it helps inform our work yet to come on this issue. A summary of the community engagement is available here

Seattle Listening Session

Monday, March 4, 2019
3:00 pm - 4:30 pm

Community listening session hosted by West African Community Council
6322 44th Ave S.
Seattle, WA 98118

Renton Listening Session

Monday, March 18, 2019
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Community listening session hosted by African Community Housing & Development and Somali Parents Education Board
Renton Public Library
100 Mill Ave S.
Renton, WA 98057

Bellevue Listening Session

Tuesday, March 19, 2019
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Community listening session hosted by Muslim Community and Neighborhood Association, India Association of Western WA and Eastside Immigrant and Refugee Coalition
Bellevue Family YMCA
14230 Bel-Red Rd
Bellevue, WA

Bellevue Listening Session

Thursday, April 4, 2019
1:00 pm - 2:30 pm

Community listening session hosted by India Association of Western Washington
North Bellevue Community Center, Room A
4063 148th Ave NE
Bellevue, WA

Renton Listening Session

Friday, April 5, 2019
11:00 am - 12:30 pm

Community listening session hosted by Puget Sound College & Career Network Team
800 Oakesdale Ave SW
Renton, WA

PSTAA listening session with Washington Bus and Vera Project

Friday, April 12, 2019
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

Community listening session for youth
Seattle Center, Vera Project - 305 Harrison St
Seattle, WA

Seattle Listening Session

Monday, April 15, 2019
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Community listening session hosted by Treehouse, Mockingbird Society, Seattle YMCA
2100 24th Ave S, Suite 200
Seattle, WA

White Center Listening Session

Tuesday, April 16, 2019
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Community listening session hosted by White Center CDA and YES Foundation
Technology Access Foundation, Bethaday Community Learning Space
605 SW 108th Street
Seattle, WA 98146

Listening Session Washington Bus, South Seattle College & White Center Development Association

Wednesday, April 17, 2019
1:00 pm - 2:30 pm

Community listening session hosted by South Seattle College and White Center Development Association for youth and students
South Seattle College - Room CAH 102
6000 16th Avenue SW
Seattle, WA


Listening Session in Spanish

Thursday, April 18, 2019
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Community listening session hosted by Padres Activos Al Futuro
NAVOS Mental Health Solutions
1210 SW 136th St
Burien, WA 98166


Listening Session in Federal Way

Monday, April 22, 2019
5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Federal Way Community Center - Forest Lounge
876 S. 333rd Street
Federal Way, WA 98003

Listening Session with ACRS, City of Kent, King County, and WA State Office of Refugee & Immigrant Assistance

Wednesday, April 24, 2019
5:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Kent Commons Community Center - Olympic Room 525 4th Ave N,
Kent, WA 98032
This session is for members of the immigrant community: parents, youth, education advocates.

Listening Session with Southpark Information and Resource Center

Thursday, April 25, 2019
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm

8201 10th Ave S
Seattle, WA 98108

Listening Session in Spanish with Para Los Ninos

Friday, April 26, 2019
7:30 pm - 8:30 pm

425 SW 144th St,
Burien, WA 98166

Auburn PSTAA community listening session

Wednesday, April 29, 2019
5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Green River College, Student Union Bldg, River Room

Listening Session with Glover Empower Mentoring Program - this session is for Youth only

Wednesday, May 1, 2019
5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Kent Commons Community Center (on the campus of Kent Phoenix Academy)
11000 SE 264th St
Kent, WA 98030

PSTAA listening session: Open Doors for Multicultural Families

Friday, May 3, 2019
5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

24437 Russell Rd. #110
Kent WA 98032

PSTAA listening session with Northshore School District

Thursday, May 9, 2019
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Northshore School District, Board room
3330 Monte Villa Parkway
Bothell, WA 98021

PSTAA listening session at North Seattle College (this session is intended for students, youth, young adults)

Monday, May 13, 2019
1:00 pm - 2:30 pm

North Seattle College
College Center Building, Room 1360
9600 College Way N
Seattle, WA 98103

PSTAA listening session with Friends of Youth

Tuesday, May 14, 2019
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

16225 NE 87th Street, Suite A1
Redmond, WA 98052

PSTAA listening session with Meeker Middle School 2019 (this session is for Youth only)

Tuesday, May 14, 2019
4:30 pm - 5:30 pm

Meeker Middle School
12600 SE 192nd Street
Renton, WA 98058

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