Denny-Sealth Big Band Dinner Dance report: ‘Phenomenal’!

March 23, 2014 at 2:01 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS culture/arts | Comments Off

(Photos courtesy Denny principal Jeff Clark)
Big night of music and dancing last night in the Sealth/Denny Galleria! From Denny International Middle School principal Jeff Clark, on behalf of himself and Chief Sealth International High School principal Aida Fraser-Hammer:

The Denny International Middle School and Chief Sealth International High School Big Band Dinner was held last night to the delight of all in attendance.

(Denny Jazz Band)
The music from all three performing groups, the Denny Jazz Band, the Sealth Jazz Band, and the West Seattle Big Band was phenomenal! Guests enjoyed great food and dancing to the amazing sounds or the performers.

(Dancing to the Chief Sealth Jazz Band)
Once again, Mr. Marcus Pimpleton has skillfully taken our music groups to a new level of performance–congratulations to all of the Denny and Sealth musicians! A huge thank you to the West Seattle Big Band for supporting us with their time, talents, and donation.

(West Seattle Big Band)
Our volunteers are a group who continue to demonstrate unparalleled dedication to our kids and music program — thank you so much!

The West Seattle Big Band also performed for benefits at West Seattle High School and at Madison Middle School; supporting student music is their main mission. Watch for their local performances later this year, usually including the West Seattle Hi-Yu Concert in the Park at Hiawatha in July.

Sanislo book sale ahead; donated books welcome now!

March 22, 2014 at 10:03 am | In How to help, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | Comments Off

One of West Seattle’s biggest book-sale benefits is just two weeks away – at Sanislo Elementary School, 10 am-2 pm on Saturday, April 5th – and you have a chance to help beyond going to buy books: You are invited to donate them, starting now. Lynette Jeung from the Sanislo PTA explains:

This sale benefits the 4th grade class and their upcoming camping trip to Camp Sealth! We are needing lots of book donations so please dig through your shelves, closets, kids rooms for books that you no longer need. We could use all kinds of donations. Specifically, we are looking for both children’s and adult books (both nonfiction and fiction). No instruction manuals or old textbooks please. :) For more info, please e-mail ell1970sab@gmail.com – Go Sanislo!!

Lynette even says she’ll consider picking up donations, so e-mail to ask her about that too, if it would be helpful.

Video: Lots of company for Madison Middle School musicians as they host districtwide orchestra festival

March 21, 2014 at 7:35 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 2 Comments

That’s one big middle-school orchestra – more than 200 musicians joining together at Madison Middle School on Thursday as Madison hosted Seattle Public Schools‘ districtwide Middle School Orchestra Festival. Madison music teacher Clark Bathum, who invited us to stop by and check it out, explained it’s a chance for the young musicians from middle-school students all around the city to “participate in a joint rehearsal, clinic, and recording session.” Guest clinician was Kim Roy from Seattle Rock Orchestra and the West Seattle Community Orchestras:

The students rehearsed and performed two songs that were huge hits more than 40 years apart – The Beatles‘ “All You Need Is Love” and Adele‘s “Rolling in the Deep.”

Immediately above is our video of one of their runthroughs of the Beatles song; for the Adele song, we have an audio recording – listen to it here. Perhaps in honor of the occasion, a Beatles lunchbox was sighted on the sidelines – we were there right after lunch break:

Final count of musicians in attendance, Bathum told us, was 226.

Countdown to World Water Week @ Chief Sealth: 3 days away

March 21, 2014 at 12:58 pm | In Environment, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | Comments Off

MIDWAYJOURNEY-JanVozenilek-0859

(Chris Jordan on Midway, via Midway Journey photoset on Flickr)
School is almost out for the week at Chief Sealth International High School – and when its students return to class Monday, it will be a special occasion: The start of the fourth annual World Water Week “ideas festival.” You are invited to the keynote presentation Tuesday night by Chris Jordan, who addresses this year’s theme – plastic pollution – via a close-up look at one particular effect of the Pacific Ocean “garbage patch.” Here’s the official WWW overview:

Students, teachers, and members of Chief Sealth International High School community will come together for a week dedicated to raising awareness about global and local water issues during the fourth annual World Water Week. This year’s festival theme is plastic pollution.

On Tuesday, March 25, World Water Week presents keynote speaker, Chris Jordan. For the past few years, Jordan, a Seattle photographer, has immersed himself in a stunning environmental tragedy on Midway Island in the heart of the Pacific: the starvation of thousands of albatrosses who mistake floating plastic trash for food. Jordan will share his journey to Midway through stories, photos, and film, recounting his harrowing and redemptive journey into horror, beauty, grief, love, and — ultimately — healing. The event is co-sponsored by Town Hall Seattle and will take place in the Chief Sealth International High School Auditorium.

Students are currently fundraising to cover festival costs. Online contributions can be made here: http://www.global-visionaries.org/GLClassDonate

The 2014 World Water Week schedule includes:

Monday/Tuesday, March 24-25: The student body will attend a student-led assembly that introduces the topic of global plastic pollution. The students will also participate in a synchronous all-school lesson about plastic pollution.

Tuesday, March 25: Resource Fair with local water organizations from 6-7 p.m. with music and refreshments. Keynote lecture with Chris Jordan in the Chief Sealth International High School Auditorium at 7 p.m. This is the only public component of the festival.

Wednesday, March 26: School-wide student conference with workshops for students with speakers from NOAA, King County Solid Waste Division, 5 Gyres, Seattle Children’s Hospital, Puget Soundkeeper Alliance, UW-Tacoma, Waste Management, Product Stewardship Institute, Tox-ick.org and others.

Thursday, March 27: Students’ families will attend a Multicultural Night program that will feature activities about water and plastic pollution for all ages.

Friday, March 28: Closing all-school assembly.

This festival is being organized by Chief Sealth International students Tasha Addington-Ferris, Aisaya Corbray, and Paloma Robertson along with teacher and mentor Noah Zeichner. The team works with a hard-working group of over 40 Chief Sealth students and teachers, in collaboration with several local organizations.

These students became interested in water issues after participating in the 2011 World Water Week festival put together by then-Sealth senior Molly Freed. In the summer of 2010, the Bezos Family Foundation selected Freed and Zeichner as Bezos Scholars — two of 12 scholar/educator pairs across the nation — to attend the Aspen Ideas Festival. At the festival, scholars were directed to create their own local Ideas Festival, and Freed and Zeichner developed the vision for World Water Week.

Here’s our coverage of the community kickoff night from that first-ever Sealth WWW; in 2012, we covered outdoor activities including a food walk and garden-building; last year’s focus was on sanitation issues, including a visit by world-famous “Mr. Toilet,” Jack Sim.

High-school soccer: West Seattle HS vs. Chief Sealth IHS

March 21, 2014 at 6:23 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS & Sports | 6 Comments

Thanks to NP for the soccer report and photos: It was friendly-rivalry time at Walt Hundley Playfield in High Point on Thursday as West Seattle High School defeated Chief Sealth International High School 2-1, “with freshman Akili Kasim in the goal box along with a young team on the field.” NP adds, “It was nice to see a [retired] Sealth teacher (Mrs. C) giving the West Seattle goalie a hug after a great win!”

Next up for WSHS, Franklin comes to play @ Southwest Athletic Complex at 4 pm Tuesday; next up for Sealth, it’s back to Walt Hundley for a 3:30 pm game against Cleveland that day.

Watch West Seattle High School baseball @ Safeco Field, free!

March 21, 2014 at 6:05 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS & Sports | Comments Off

(Cameron Slader making the play at third base)
Next up for West Seattle High School baseball – they’re playing at Safeco Field on Saturday! This follows a Thursday pre-season loss to Ballard, 3-1, with photos and summary courtesy of Greg Slader (thank you!):

Pitching and defense did their job Thursday, but the offense still lacks the clutch hits. Ben Wexler pitched three innings as he relied on his defense to hold Ballard to one run:

(Ben Wexler throwing a strike)
Offense struggled again to get going as the Only RBI hit was late in the Game. The Wildcats left plenty of base runners stranded and had plenty of opportunities late in the game.

Next game is Saturday 4 pm @ Safeco Field vs. Issaquah. Tickets are FREE, sit anywhere you want. Parking is ½ price. Come support the team!

West Seattle HS String Orchestra wins festival award

March 20, 2014 at 6:34 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS culture/arts | 1 Comment

Congratulations to the award-winning West Seattle High School String Orchestra! WSHS music teacher Ethan Thomas shares the photo and report:

The West Seattle High School String Orchestra traveled to Bellingham on March 14th to participate in the Western Washington University Orchestra Festival. The Orchestra had a chance to perform for a panel of college professors and received a personalized clinic by renowned violinist and educator Dr. Chung Park. Our students performed very well and received a silver category award for their hard work.

High-school baseball: West Seattle HS hosts Garfield

March 19, 2014 at 6:50 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS & Sports | 1 Comment

(Bobby Swami singles to drive in a run)
The Garfield High School baseball team’s local tour moved on Tuesday to West Seattle High School, where the Bulldogs beat the Wildcats 6-4. Thanks to Greg Slader for the photos above and below and this summary:

Kevin Cuddy pitched three solid innings, holding Garfield to one un-earned run and a 1-1 tie through three. Unfortunately, a five-run fourth inning would prove too much for West Seattle as they suffered the loss 4-6. The team is still working on coming together, but with six seniors, a junior and two sophomores starting the game, positions seem to be set for defense.

(Spencer Elder making the play at second base)
As noted in our report on Garfield’s game against Chief Sealth a day earlier, the GHS roster includes West Seattleites who have been past West Seattle Little League (and other organizations) teammates of boys on the home teams, so there were people in the stands cheering for everybody.

(WSB photo)
West Seattleite Justin Arkills-McLain was the winning pitcher for GHS, as noted in their online wrapup.

High-school baseball: Chief Sealth hosts Garfield, with locals on both sides

March 18, 2014 at 1:03 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS & Sports | 1 Comment

(Garfield pitcher Owen Vickrey, WSLL alum)
The visiting team was almost a second home team when the Chief Sealth International High School Seahawks opened its baseball season at Roxhill on Monday afternoon. Four of the visiting Garfield High School Bulldogs, as noted in this Garfield-penned online wrapup, are West Seattle Little League alums – winning pitcher Owen Vickrey, catcher Alex Chase, rightfielder Justin Arkills-McLain, and centerfielder Derek Billey. Derek’s father, Garfield assistant varsity coach Dan Billey, alerted us to the this, meaning much familiarity on the field not only during this game, but also when Garfield goes on to play West Seattle HS on Tuesday, since the two on-peninsula teams have former WSLL teammates too. But back to Monday’s game; final score was Garfield 11, Sealth 6.

(Sealth 3rd base, Merle Rowan-Kennedy, WSLL alum)
Chase led Garfield with 5 RBIs:

(Garfield catcher Alex Chase, WSLL alum)
Today’s WSHS-Garfield game is at 4 pm, and Coach Billey notes that too will feature former WSLL teammates turned friendly rivals. He coached many of them along the way starting when they were about 6 and moving on up through state Little League All-Star tournaments in their 9-10, 10-11, and 11-12 days. So head on over to Hiawatha for today’s 3:30 pm game and cheer for everybody.

P.S. Speaking of WSLL, its pre-season jamboree is this Saturday at Bar-S Fields on Alki Point.

West Seattle High School Class of 1974: Reunion time!

March 16, 2014 at 8:20 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 1 Comment

If you’re a 1974 graduate of West Seattle High School, you have two more weeks to buy discounted advance tickets to your 40th class reunion this summer. The official announcement:

The West Seattle High School Class of 1974 40th Class Reunion is scheduled for Saturday, July 19, 2014 from 6:30 to 11:30 PM at The Hall at Fauntleroy, 9131 California Avenue SW. Tickets are $75 per person if paid by April 1, 2014 and $85 after.

Additional information and payment information is available on the website: www.wshs1974.com. You can also “like” the “West Seattle High School – Class of 1974” page on Facebook for updates. Or you can e-mail Heidi Blaustein Newman at heidin129@aol.com. See you in July!

High-school sports: West Seattle HS baseball begins

March 16, 2014 at 12:12 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS & Sports | Comments Off

Play ball! High-school sports’ spring season is starting. Thanks to Greg Slader for sharing photos as Coach Velko Vitalich‘s West Seattle High School baseball team takes the field for the year, after finishing 2013 as #2 statewide. Above, the official team photo; next, two of Greg’s images from the pre-season jamboree Saturday at Liberty High School. Here’s Kevin Cuddy throwing the first pitch:

And Jimmy Mai rounding third base on his way to scoring a run:

Greg reports:

WS tied Kentwood in three innings at 3-3 and jumped on Liberty for a 4-1 edge. Offense had plenty of big hits as the top of the order scored seven runs in six innings. Five pitchers have stepped up this season and seem ready for the challenge ahead. Defense was shaky but they should return to last year’s form as they work together more.

Up next for WSHS – two games at home (Hiawatha), Garfield on Tuesday and Ballard on Thursday, both at 3:30 pm.

2 schools, 1 campus, 1 busy road: Safety improvements sought before Arbor Heights moves in with STEM

March 15, 2014 at 5:32 pm | In Safety, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 20 Comments

(School-zone beacon near Boren, now fully operational; photo courtesy Robin Graham)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Next school year, the former Louisa May Boren Junior High School on Delridge will be home to two schools – ongoing permanent home to K-5 (future K-8) STEM, and starting its two-year status as temporary home to Arbor Heights Elementary while AH is rebuilt.

That’s 800 or so students filling the campus, plus their teachers and other staffers.

Space in the building is not much at issue. Safety is – specifically, safely getting all those students to and from school, which fronts one of West Seattle’s main arterials, Delridge Way, a much-used route to and from the two bridges across the Duwamish River connecting the peninsula with downtown.

Though this is the second year K-5 STEM has occupied the building, it is only now getting something as simple as flashing beacons to catch drivers’ attention in the 20-mph zone. The beacons just began operation, and SDOT’s Brian Dougherty says that when Arbor Heights moves in this fall, the lights will be programmed to reflect the staggered times both schools will be in session on the campus.

The lights are welcome, but nowhere near a full solution.

Click to read the rest of 2 schools, 1 campus, 1 busy road: Safety improvements sought before Arbor Heights moves in with STEM…

South Seattle Community College’s new name: South Seattle College

March 14, 2014 at 2:34 pm | In Puget Ridge, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 15 Comments

Community college isn’t just for 2-year degrees any more, so a new name is in the works for West Seattle-headquartered South Seattle Community College (WSB sponsor) – it will become South Seattle College. That’s part of a district-wide change, as this announcement explains:

At its meeting March 13, 2014, the Seattle Community Colleges District Board of Trustees voted unanimously to change the name of the District to Seattle Colleges and to change the names of the colleges to North Seattle College, Seattle Central College, and South Seattle College.

The decision came after a year-long exploration of national and statewide trends; opinion surveys of students, employees and community partners; and consultation with business and civic leaders and representatives from Seattle Public Schools.

All three of the District’s colleges offer bachelor’s degrees now.

Click to read the rest of South Seattle Community College’s new name: South Seattle College…

West Seattle schools: Bella Mente crowdfunding for new location

March 14, 2014 at 11:24 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 17 Comments

(Photos courtesy Lauren Adams)
We’ve been asked a few times about work under way at 6007 California SW, home to Dr. Mark Bingham‘s dentistry practice until he retired after a quarter-century. We’ve learned that it’s the new home of the Bella Mente Early Learning Center preschool/day-care center – leaving its longtime Triangle-area location after facing the loss its lease. And there’s a twist: Bella Mente has a crowdfunding campaign in progress.

After six years at 40th and Edmunds – on two 3-year leases – Bella Mente’s owner Lauren Adams was offered a one-year extension, with time beyond that “possible” but no guarantee; property managers told her the property will be sold with another Huling Properties-owned site immediately east. She says the price (the 2-parcel site’s assessed value alone is $2.7 million) was out of her range, so she bought the California SW location. That 68-year-old building requires extensive renovation work, however – estimated at around $278,000 – that Adams says wasn’t factored into her SBA loan because of appraisal confusion (“as-is” vs. “after construction”). She says that with time running out on her lease, she didn’t want to drop the plan:

So, we took the leap and are working hard 24/7 to find creative ways to come up with construction costs. My family has been extremely supportive and we are selling both our car and our house to use those funds for our project. My husband and I are offering our families date nights every Friday night with all proceeds going to this fund. Our teachers are spreading the word as well. We know the hard work that this will take and we are prepared to do anything we can to make this building the new home for Bella Mente. We have plans for the typical fundraising ideas of bake sales, garage sales, art auctions, and 5K’s. And we are keeping open minds to any other ideas that our community might have to help us work to reach our goal.

Adams’s friend Jason, who first told us about the situation, says Adams has raised about half of it so far.” The preschool owner tells us, “We have a long way to go but are excited for the challenge and this opportunity to continue our vision for our current children and the future children in our community that we will be able to reach because of this new building.” Her crowdfunding page is here.

Preschool for All? Councilmember Burgess visits Community School of West Seattle on eve of local conversation

March 12, 2014 at 12:05 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 2 Comments

Tomorrow night, the city’s exploration of “Preschool for All” is the subject of a West Seattle meeting (as previewed here last week). As part of his research, City Councilmember Tim Burgess was part of a field trip back east last week – and today, he visited local preschoolers much closer to home, at the Community School of West Seattle. He also talked with CSWS’s Sarah Airhart:

CSWS focuses exclusively on preschool for 3- and 4-year-olds, and that’s who the Preschool for All initiative is centered on, too. Tomorrow night’s meeting is from 6-8 pm at Neighborhood House’s High Point Center (6400 Sylvan Way SW). Dinner and child care will be provided, free; you’re asked to RSVP to 206-233-5118 or upk@seattle.gov.

Video: Walking to West Seattle Elementary with Gov. Inslee

March 12, 2014 at 1:30 am | In Health, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 4 Comments

About 20 West Seattle Elementary students will have a lot to talk about on their way to school today – one day after a high-profile visitor accompanied their Walking School Bus. Governor Jay Inslee is trying to encourage the “Healthiest Next Generation,” and walking is of course part of it. WSE’s principal Vicki Sacco accompanied him:

One of the walkers had a bit of a shoe problem – and the governor stepped in to help:

Back on the move, Inslee greeted a crossing guard:

And there was time for autographs:

Parting words from the governor:

Also part of the event, Feet First, which advocates walking and biking to school safely – read about its initiatives here.

Governor Inslee to join West Seattle Elementary students’ Walking School Bus tomorrow

March 10, 2014 at 3:08 pm | In High Point, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | Comments Off

If you see a little extra commotion at and near West Seattle Elementary in High Point tomorrow morning, it’s because Governor Inslee will be visiting. We just got word he’s joining a Walking School Bus headed for WSE tomorrow morning. Along with students, the Walking School Bus will be joined by school leaders including WSE principal Vicki Sacco, pedestrian advocates from Feet First, and health-care advocates. The governor’s office says this fits right in with his Healthiest Next Generation initiative.

One more chance to party with the West Seattle Big Band and help local students: Denny-Sealth dinner/dance coming up

March 10, 2014 at 2:53 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS culture/arts | Comments Off

(Photo courtesy Denny-Sealth Performing Arts)
A major mission of the West Seattle Big Band is to support music programs in local schools, and once again this school year, its musicians have performed on the same bills as local middle- and high-school groups. Another one’s coming up in less than two weeks, as announced:

BIG BAND DINNER DANCE MARCH 22! Denny-Sealth Performing Arts presents an evening of great food and dancing to the sounds of the Denny International Middle School Jazz Band, the Chief Sealth International High School Jazz Band, and the West Seattle Big Band!

Dinner features Otis Pimpleton’s Louisiana-style BBQ chicken with baked beans, potato salad, and mixed vegetables; a vegetarian lasagna option is available upon request. A dessert dash will be included as part of the event which takes place in the Chief Sealth Galleria from 6-10 pm. Tickets are $25 for dinner and dancing and must be purchased in advance. A limited number of dance-only tickets will be available at the door after 7:30 for students with ID. All proceeds benefit the Denny and Sealth jazz bands.

Tickets are available online – just go here.

What do you want ‘Preschool for All’ to offer? City reps coming to West Seattle on Thursday for your answer

March 8, 2014 at 9:13 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 14 Comments

The city’s trying to find a way for Seattle families to have access to affordable, voluntary “Preschool for All,” and wants to hear from you about how it might work. 6-8 pm Thursday (March 13th) you can come to a West Seattle meeting – with free dinner and child care – to share your thoughts and ideas. It’ll be at Neighborhood House’s High Point Center (6400 Sylvan Way SW); here’s the official flyer, listing some of the specific topics they want to talk about. The child care is for ages 2-8 and if you’d like to take advantage of it, e-mail upk@seattle.gov with the number of children you’ll be bringing and their ages.

Chief Sealth students win President’s Volunteer Service Award

March 7, 2014 at 8:32 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 4 Comments

Congratulations to the two Chief Sealth International High School students whose achievements we heard about from assistant principal Cheryl Sullivan:

Chief Sealth International High School seniors Tasha Addington-Ferris [right] and Teianna Chenkovich [left] have been awarded the President’s Volunteer Service Award! They were honored at our Student of the Month luncheon today and received a certificate and a letter from President Barack Obama. We hope that future Chief Sealth students and other youth in the community look up to these two young women as role models and examples of what youth can do to improve their communities!

Fairmount Park Elementary updates: FAQ; APP testing information

March 7, 2014 at 2:41 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | Comments Off

With the Open Enrollment period for Seattle Public Schools wrapping up – though registration does continue even after today – we have updates for families considering Fairmount Park Elementary, reopening this fall after post-mothballs expansion (thanks to Kevin and Anand for sharing the links):

FAIRMOUNT FAQ: A “frequently asked questions” document is available via the Seattle Public Schools website. You can download the newest version here.

APP TESTING: With Fairmount offering the APP top-level-gifted program, they have a special round of testing available for some potential APP students later this month. Here’s the eligibility and deadlines; here’s the form.

Global Reading Challenge update: 4 more WS teams compete

March 7, 2014 at 12:51 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | Comments Off

Thanks to Kelly for the photo – the last semifinal round of Global Reading Challenge competition at the Seattle Public Library downtown is over, and this one turned out to have FOUR West Seattle elementary schools competing – Gatewood, Highland Park, Roxhill, and West Seattle. Kelly reports that all four tied for 3rd place (along with 2 other schools) but that’s not high enough to advance to the finals. So as far as we’ve heard, Arbor Heights Elementary‘s Super Ultimate Nerdy Ninjas are the only West Seattle team headed to final competition on March 18th (also at the Central Library).

2:08 PM UPDATE: Confirmed with Mary Palmer from SPL, the lineup for the citywide final (just in case you’re wondering about the non-WS teams against whom AH will be competing) – their schools & team name (each school had multiple teams in the early round, with intraschool competition):

View Ridge
Marvelous Mind Masters

Whittier
Word Warriors

Adams
The Little Team That Could

Orca
Radiant Readers

Northgate
Seahawk Readers

Van Asselt
Book Thieves

Arbor Heights
Super Ultimate Nerdy Ninjas

Greenwood
Chickadees

Graham Hill
Olympic Readers

Leschi
Golden Seven

Power’s back on at Sanislo Elementary and school IS on for Friday

March 6, 2014 at 9:05 pm | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 1 Comment

Got a note from Lynette Jeung from the Sanislo Elementary PTA, asking if we would make note that the power IS back on at Sanislo Elementary and there WILL be school tomorrow. That’s according to a phone call from Sanislo principal Bruce Rhodes. (Sanislo was affected by today’s power problems, which are all now resolved.)

Congratulations! Arbor Heights Elementary’s Super Ultimate Nerdy Ninjas make the finals

March 6, 2014 at 3:00 pm | In Arbor Heights, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 9 Comments

The semifinals of the Seattle Public Library‘s Global Reading Challenge are under way downtown – and we have our first word of a West Seattle team making it to the GRC’s finals: SPL’s Mary Palmer tells us the Super Ultimate Nerdy Ninjas from Arbor Heights Elementary did well enough today to advance to the March 18th final. One more West Seattle team has yet to have its semifinal round – that’s Roxhill, tomorrow.

‘Don’t throw the world away’: Plastic pollution’s the focus for this year’s World Water Week @ Chief Sealth International HS

March 5, 2014 at 11:51 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 4 Comments

That’s the trailer for “Midway,” a film by photographer/filmmaker Chris Jordan telling the story of plastics pollution in the Pacific through birds whose stomachs are filled with it. On Tuesday, March 25th, Jordan will be the public keynote speaker for this year’s World Water Week at Chief Sealth International High School – plastics pollution is the focus of the fourth annual edition of the weeklong “idea festival” organized by social-studies teacher Noah Zeichner and his students, as explained here:

We started WWW four years ago during our first year as an international school. We chose the theme of water because we thought it would be relevant to students and teachers and of course, it is one of the most critical global issues on the planet. WWW is a weeklong series of assemblies, synchronous lessons, a student conference, evening keynotes, service learning, and celebration. Each of the four years has had a sub-theme. The first year it was global scarcity and local conservation. The second year was food security. Last year was sanitation (toilets). This year’s theme is plastic pollution. We wanted to help students see the interconnections between all of these complex global issues, with water at the center of it all.

Students leading WWW this year are 11th graders Aisaya Corbray and Paloma Robertson with the support of senior Tasha Addington-Ferris, with dozens of others working in support. World Water Week also is tying in this year with the Sealth 9th graders’ Water, Ecology, and Sustainability Team (WEST) Project, which they will be presenting to 8th graders at adjacent Denny International Middle School. The WEST Project work will be on display during a resource fair preceding Chris Jordan’s appearance on March 25th, and the WWW team hopes you will join them that night. Here’s the full schedule of what they will be working on, including a student conference all day Wednesday, March 26th. Stand by for more as WWW gets closer.

West Seattle High School baseball team ready to follow up second-in-state season

March 5, 2014 at 9:04 am | In West Seattle news, West Seattle schools, WS & Sports | 3 Comments

Remember that splash of sunshine on Monday afternoon? It arrived at just the right moment for the West Seattle High School baseball team, parent Greg Slader reports:

High School Baseball started on Monday and West Seattle enjoyed a brief glimpse of sunshine at Monday’s practice. This year’s team returns 10 seniors from last year’s team, which made a fantastic run in the state tournament to 2nd place. The pre-season jamboree is scheduled for March 15th in Liberty @ 10 am.

After that, the WSHS team has two games at home at Hiawatha, hosting Garfield on March 18th and Ballard on March 20th. Two games against crosstown rival Chief Sealth International High School are on the schedule for April 30th (at Southwest Athletic Complex) and May 2nd (at home).

Extra time to buy your ticket for Arbor Heights Elementary auction

March 3, 2014 at 9:04 am | In How to help, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 1 Comment

Since they know you’re busy, organizers of this year’s Arbor Heights Elementary School auction have extended the ticket-buying deadline to this Friday (March 7th). The auction is at The Hall at Fauntleroy on Friday, March 14th – doors open and bidding begins at 5:30 pm, dinner at 7 pm; see the official flyer here. This year’s “raise the paddle” direct donations are helping buy science equipment! You can buy your ticket(s) right now online, here.

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