Supporters of Indian Heritage Middle College today urged Seattle school leaders to revitalize the alternative high-school program, and not move it to leased space at Northgate Mall.
The program almost closed last year, but after Jose Banda became superintendent, he delayed the closure, and is forming an advisory committee to help determine the program’s future. But he also recently announced the program will move from the Wilson-Pacific building, where it has been since 1989. As part of the district’s construction plans, the buildings at Wilson-Pacific will be torn down, and a new elementary and middle school will be constructed at the site.
The supporters, who held a rally outside district headquarters, said district administrators have let the Indian Heritage program deteriorate, and moving it to Northgate Mall, where another district program already is located, would hurt it further. They would like Indian Heritage to be moved to a school site instead and, eventually, for it to return to the new Wilson-Pacific campus. They also want the program to have Native instructors and Native-focused curriculum, and they urged the district to preserve the murals that nationally known artist Andrew Morrison has painted on buildings at Wilson-Pacific.