Daughter, mother see both sides of strike

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SNOQUALMIE VALLEY - Lindsey Jorgensen's first lesson as a teacher took place outside the classroom.

The Washington State University student was supposed to begin student-teaching mathematics at Issaquah High School last week, but a districtwide teachers strike had her staying at home.

"I don't know a lot about the union, but I'm just following their lead. When they tell me to go back, I'll be there, ready," Lindsey said. "I have to say honestly that this has given me more time to prepare."

Lindsey, who was a Snoqualmie Valley School District student from the third grade all the way through high school, requested that her assignment be in the Issaquah district so she could come back to the Valley to live and help coach the Mount Si High School girls' soccer team.

She said she has wanted to be a teacher since high school.

"Oftentimes math teachers are a little out on the edge," Lindsey said last week. "I wanted to be a normal math teacher."

Although Lindsey said she had stayed detached from the disagreements in Issaquah, it reaffirmed the seriousness of the problems facing school districts across the state, such as retaining or attracting hard-to-find female math and science teachers.

"I think I have had some opinions about education and reasons why it is the way it is at this point and the struggle that we are having with it," Lindsey said. "Until we have a strong pool of teachers it's going to be hard to always have the best ones, and no one is going to want to pay for them unless they are the best."

Education runs in Lindsey's family. Her mother, Becky Jorgensen, has sat on the Snoqualmie Valley School District Board of Educators for the last seven years and was involved with other volunteer groups in the district before that.

Becky said she knows many of the Issaquah district's administrators and teachers and holds them in high regard, knowing they were doing all they could to get school started.

She also knows the budget constraints school district's deal with and that communicating those strains can lead to problems.

"When people try to communicate an understanding of district finances, even for myself, it is very complicated," Becky said. "So it is really easy to misconstrue information."

For the complete story, pick up a copy of this weeks Valley Record

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