STEMbyTAF Model at Washington Middle School
The STEMbyTAF Model will not be offered at Washington Middle School after the 2022-23 school year.
On June 7, 2023, Seattle Public Schools (SPS) and the Technology Access Foundation (TAF) formally ended the partnership to bring the STEMbyTAF Model to Washington Middle School.
A key component of the partnership has been SPS’s commitment to providing the additional teachers needed for the smaller class sizes that are integral to the STEMbyTAF Model at WMS. With the recent district budget cuts, SPS is no longer able to fund these additional teachers. Because of this, TAF and SPS have jointly agreed that continuing the STEMbyTAF Model at WMS is no longer feasible and have jointly agreed to terminate the Joint Operating Agreement under which they have been operating. As a result, the STEMbyTAF Model will no longer be offered at WMS.
Superintendent Brent Jones said the following about the partnership:
“We are grateful for having the partnership with Technology Access Foundation at Washington Middle School. When we have the opportunity to incorporate science technology, engineering and mathematics into curriculum while utilizing a project-based teaching model, we can capture innovation. TAF brought forward promising practices and ways of thinking about teaching and learning.”
TAF Executive Director Trish Millines Dziko added:
“We want to thank parents for entrusting us to create integrated classrooms to create a cohesive and inclusive learning space for all, as well as taking the time to be engaged and transparent. Thank you to the students for embracing this new way of learning and being willing to put your thoughts out there and exercise your leadership chops. Thank you to the teachers who were invested in implementing the STEMbyTAF Model, which for many turned their entire way of teaching upside down. Thank you to Principal Katrina Hunt for leading the school through this unique partnership.
“We encourage the teachers to continue as many of the STEMbyTAF teaching practices as possible to ensure all students have an opportunity to understand and share their voices, see their cultures and communities represented in the curriculum, and have connections to professionals in the community.“
Looking ahead, our respective organizations are moving forward separately, but remain dedicated to the mission of ensuring that students thrive. We are confident that the Washington Middle School leadership and staff also are united around the same goal and will continue to offer challenging and robust academic and extracurricular offerings for its students, preparing them for success in high school and to graduate Seattle and world ready.