Friday Mayor Ed Murray announced that Seattle Parks and Recreation will offer drop-in activities for up to 3,000 kids at the City’s community centers in the event that the teachers’ strike continues during the week of September 14.
“This week, we have reached capacity at several centers and recognize the demand is likely to grow should the strike continue,” said Murray. “Thousands of families are seeking options for their school-age kids. We’ve brought on additional staff and AmeriCorps volunteers to ease the burden for parents who need to go back to work.”
The drop-in activities will operate from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 21 community centers around the city. Parks and Recreation will accommodate youth in kindergarten through 6th grade. There is no cost and the activities are open to all families. The recreation activities will operate only if school is not in session.
“As the teachers’ strike continues, we are stepping up our support,” said Parks and Recreation Superintendent Jesús Aguirre. “After a very busy summer, Seattle Parks and Recreation staff and our partners with the Associated Recreation Council are going the extra mile to help children and families and we really appreciate their efforts.”
This week, Seattle Parks and Recreation expanded its before- and after-school programs into all-day camps at 16 Seattle community centers. These camps gave priority to families already enrolled in the department’s before- and after-school program and served other families when space was available. The total capacity at these centers was 892.
For the week of September 14:
- Families do not have to be enrolled in Seattle Parks and Recreation’s before- and after-school program.
- Children will be asked to bring a sack lunch.
- Seattle Parks and Recreation will provide a breakfast snack.
- Seattle Human Services Department will provide sack lunches (and afternoon snacks) for those who don’t bring lunch.
- City Year has offered 84 AmeriCorps members who have already cleared background checks to assist with the camps.
Parents or guardians can register online or in person at a community center:
- All registration is first come, first serve.
- SPARC registration system.
- A registration form must be filled out to complete the registration process. The form is available online at seattle.gov/parks or at community centers.
- Parents may also register children and complete the registration form on the first day a child attends the program as space is available.
- Parents/guardians must drop children off by 9 a.m. or else the waiting list will be activated.
- Children will only be released to authorized person, with identification, listed on the sign-up form.
- During this high volume drop-in program parents with children having problems may have to be called to pick their child(ren) up early.
Preschool programs will be canceled at all community centers for the duration of the strike. Families will receive a pro-rated credit for the days missed. Displaced families can call the City of Seattle’s Childcare Hotline at 206-386-1050 for assistance in finding alternative child care.
The camps will take place at these centers:
- Northwest Seattle: Ballard, Bitter Lake, Loyal Heights, Magnolia community centers
- Northeast Seattle: Magnuson, Meadowbrook, Northgate, Ravenna-Eckstein community centers
- Central: Garfield, Miller, Queen Anne, Yesler community centers
- Southwest Seattle: Alki, Delridge, Hiawatha, High Point, South Park community centers
- Southeast: Jefferson, Rainier, Rainier Beach, Van Asselt community centers
Daily activities will vary by site.
In addition, Seattle Parks and Recreation Teen Life Centers at Meadowbrook, Garfield and Southwest community centers will open for drop-in two hours earlier than normal from 11 a.m. until their regular closing times. See this link: seattle.gov/parks/tlc.
Late Night Recreation programs will operate at their regular schedules at Bitter Lake, Delridge, High Point, Rainier, Rainier Beach, South Park, and Van Asselt community centers and at Garfield, Meadowbrook, and Southwest Teen Life Centers.