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BACK TO SCHOOL 2017: Here’s when classes start(ed)

With Labor Day weekend nearing, we’ve made a list of when local schools resume classes – a few already have!


SEATTLE PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Wednesday, September 6th, for all except kindergarteners, who start September 11th

HIGHLINE PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Wednesday, September 6th, for all except kindergarteners, who start September 11th

VASHON ISLAND SCHOOL DISTRICT: Tuesday, September 5th, for all except kindergarteners, whose students start September 7th







TILDEN SCHOOL: September 6th


WESTSIDE SCHOOL: September 6th




HOLY FAMILY SCHOOL: Started August 28th



SOUTH SEATTLE COLLEGE: Fall quarter starts September 25th

Did we miss anyone? Please comment or e-mail us!

SOUTH SEATTLE COLLEGE CHANGE: President Gary Oertli retiring

(WSB file photo)

Just announced by South Seattle College (WSB sponsor), a change at the top. Here’s the news release we just received:

After a 45-year career in higher education and nearly a decade at South Seattle College, President Gary Oertli will retire on August 31, 2017. South’s current Vice President of Instruction Peter Lortz has been appointed interim president, starting Sept. 1.

“My nearly ten years at South Seattle College has truly been the highlight of my career,” President Oertli said. “This college has such a strong culture focused on student success and a commitment to creating an environment that honors equity, inclusion and multiculturalism. That culture exists because of our dedicated faculty and staff, and amazing students.”

Oertli became president of South Seattle College in August of 2010, and had served as interim president prior to his permanent appointment. As South’s leader, Oertli encourages staff and faculty members to ask, “What is best for our students?” as the most important factor in any challenging decision. He also advocates for great customer service and creating a family atmosphere at the college, where students know they are supported, appreciated and can ask anyone for help.

During his tenure, the college was recognized for having the largest increase in full-time diverse faculty in the state, saw students recognized nationally for their achievements, and became a U.S. community college leader in implementing a “guided pathways” model for increasing student success. He also worked closely with the South Seattle College Foundation, and through their partnership the 13th Year Promise Scholarship program (providing one year of tuition-free college to high school graduates in surrounding communities) expanded from one high school to four and gave hundreds of students the opportunity to attend college.

“One of my greatest hopes is to see the 13th Year Promise Scholarship expand to all high schools in the Seattle Public Schools system,” Oertli said. “We are striving to create a college-going culture where every first grader in our city will raise their hand with confidence when asked, ‘Who here is going to college?’ ”

A West Seattle native, Oertli is a graduate of Chief Sealth High School who went on to earn his Master of Education degree at the University of Washington, where he later served as Alumni Association president. His higher education career began at Edmonds Community College, where he worked his way up from part-time instructor to interim president. He then became president and CEO of Shoreline Community College before transitioning to the Seattle Colleges District, where he held leadership positions at Seattle Central, North Seattle and South Seattle College.

Peter Lortz, who will serve as interim president from Sept. 1, 2017 to June 30, 2018, was appointed by Seattle Colleges Chancellor Shouan Pan. Lortz has served as vice president of instruction at South since January of 2015. Prior to that, he served as interim vice president of instruction, dean of the Math and Sciences Division and as a full- and part-time faculty member at North Seattle College. He obtained a Master of Science degree in Zoology and a Bachelor of Arts in Biological Sciences. Additionally, he is a graduate of the Washington Executive Leadership Academy and Powers of Leadership Retreat Series.

“I am extremely honored and excited to be taking on this role,” Lortz said. “I am particularly honored to follow in the great path that Gary Oertli has laid before South Seattle College.”

A national search will be conducted in the upcoming academic year to select South Seattle College’s next president.

The fall semester at SSC starts on September 25th.

Wondering what to do with eclipse glasses?

(Photo by Scott Scowcroft in Gatewood, post-eclipse)

Much-sought-after, and now … well, what do you do with a pair of eclipse glasses, post-eclipse, anyway? We’re not sure if the materials with which they were made will still be fully functional by the 2023 partial solar eclipse, much less beyond, so here’s an option: Louisa Boren STEM K-8 is collecting them for Astronomers Without Borders. Robin Graham from the STEM PTA says you can drop yours off at the school through October 1st. There’s a box in the hallway, Robin says, and the school’s open 10 am-3 pm “ish” weekdays until the Labor Day holiday, then 8 am-4 pm as of the first day of school (September 6th). The campus is at 5950 Delridge Way SW.

‘BE THERE’ RALLY: You’re invited to inspire West Seattle Elementary students on the first day of school

wse1(WSB photo, September 2016)

Last year, it was a stirring sight – the first-ever “Be There” rally greeting West Seattle Elementary students on the first day of school. It’s happening again this year, two weeks from tomorrow, and you are invited to be part of it – with an additional opportunity to be involved beyond the rally. The announcement is from West Seattle & Fauntleroy YMCA (WSB sponsor) executive director Shalimar Gonzales:

The community is invited to attend the second annual Be There Rally at West Seattle Elementary on Wednesday, September 6, from 7:00 am to 8:00 am. The school, in partnership with the West Seattle & Fauntleroy YMCA, is rolling out the red carpet and asking community leaders, school supporters, family, and friends to line up to cheer, clap, and high-five students as they enter into the new school year.

Last year, over 100 men and women from the Seattle area volunteered at our first rally. The West Seattle Elementary Be There Rally draws inspiration from an event held in Hartford, Connecticut, where over 100 Black men in suits got together to greet and encourage children on the first day of school. They did it because they wanted to show children of color positive images of Black people in their community instead of the negative and damaging images commonly portrayed in the media.

Research shows that children whose fathers take an active role in their educational lives earn better grades, score higher on tests, enjoy school more and are more likely to graduate from high school and attend college. Leaders are calling for 100 men to support those who may not have a male role model by volunteering at the Be There Rally. After careful consideration and speaking with the members of the High Point community, leaders decided to adjust to fit the needs of the neighborhood by also calling for 100 women. It is imperative that girls also have the opportunity to see successful women who they can identify with.

In an effort to dispel myths, breakdown stereotypes and change the narrative that surrounds West Seattle Elementary, please come dressed for success. The purpose of the dress attire is to allow students to see mirror images of themselves and combat any internalized biases damaging to themselves.

We also seek community volunteers to engage with our “Classic Men & Ladies of West Seattle Elementary” initiative.

The “Classic Men & Ladies of West Seattle Elementary” is an empowerment program to instill hope, purpose, self-pride and a love for themselves and our community. Teaching experience is not needed, just enthusiasm and a desire to share with students something about your career, your experiences, your hobby, or yourself. We want you to carry some key messages into our program, including the importance of staying in school and the value of each individual student.

The initiative is a perfect opportunity for parents, business leaders, and community members to let our students know we care about them. The idea is simple – sign up at the rally and we will work with what your schedule permits. Our program runs Monday-Friday; 2:05- 5:30 p.m.

The West Seattle & Fauntleroy YMCA is sponsoring the rally in partnership with West Seattle Elementary. Although the event is aimed to represent the demographics of the school, all people regardless of ethnic identification are encouraged to come. West Seattle Elementary collaborative school motto for the 2017/2018 school year is “Whatever it takes for each and every kid!”

Your presence at the school on the first day will support efforts to build valuable partnerships with families and members of the community to support student learning and positive academic outcomes.

To confirm your attendance or for more information, please contact Jay Smith, Director of Leadership Development at 206-331-1799 or via email at Jeremysmith@seattleymca.org.

West Seattle Elementary is in High Point at 6760 34th SW.

BACK TO SCHOOL: West Seattle Montessori School & Academy expanding

(Photo courtesy West Seattle Montessori: Former library, new enrichment center)

Big news from West Seattle Montessori School & Academy (WSB sponsor) – it’s expanding in more ways than one! Here’s the announcement:

West Seattle Montessori School & Academy, a Pre-K through 8th grade school serving West Seattle, White Center, North Highline, and Burien families since 1985, is pleased to announce exciting changes this coming school year.

*A fifth pre-primary classroom (2½ – 6 year-olds) will be opening this fall.

*A new enrichment center will be opening this coming school year, located in the former White Center King County Library. This enrichment center will be home to a performance stage area, kids’ kitchen, and a student-run store, The Owl’s Nest. This new community-centered space will extend student learning and cultivate all-school connections.

West Seattle Montessori School & Academy strives to create an environment where students embrace differences and can connect on compassionate levels with others and the world around them. West Seattle Montessori School & Academy is still accepting applications for the 2017-2018 school year.

If you are already set for this school year but looking beyond, West Seattle Montessori’s open-house dates are already set for preschool through 8th grade – November 7th, 6 pm-7:30 pm; January 27 (2018), 1 pm-3 pm; March 7, 6-7:30 pm. The school is at 11215 15th SW.

VIDEO: Ribboncutting for West Seattle’s first charter school Summit Atlas, five days before first classes

Big crowd tonight for the ribboncutting celebration at Summit Atlas, West Seattle’s first charter school, about to start classes inside a renovated – and soon to be expanded – ex-church/ex-supermarket at 9601 35th SW. The school is starting with sixth and ninth graders, adding a middle- and high-school grade each year until it’s a full 6th-through-12th campus; its soon-to-be-students were invited to help cut the ribbon tonight (our video above pans along the line).

By the time we toured the school last month, almost 200 students were enrolled. As with other charter schools in our state, this one receives public funding and does not charge tuition; it’s leasing the building and site from Washington Charter Schools Development, a donation-funded nonprofit that bought it for $4.75 million from its former owner, Freedom Church/Jesus Center, which subsequently bought and moved to a new campus in Skyway. We first reported on the charter-school plan in early 2015, after discovering it in city permit files. When the state approved Summit’s plan in August 2015, the plan was for it to open in fall 2016, but the court/legislative fight over funding charter schools led to a one-year delay.

Classes at Summit Atlas start 8:15 am Monday for ninth-graders, same time Tuesday for sixth-graders. This is the third school in Arbor Heights, joining Arbor Heights Elementary – which will start its second year in its new building next month – and Westside School (WSB sponsor), which is heading into its third year at its AH campus.

WEST SEATTLE HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: 3 weeks away, 3 ways to help

A new parents’ group, Wildcats Touchdown Club, is rallying community support for the West Seattle High School football team, under its new head coach, as the new season approaches. Here’s what they want you to know – and how they hope you can help:

Are you ready for some West Seattle High School football? The coaches, players, and parents at WSHS are. The student athletes and the community are excited for the reveal of the 2017 Wildcats … and there is a lot to be excited about.

The players have been working hard since June to get ready for this season under new head Coach Marcis Fennell. Coach Fennell is developing a culture within the WSHS Football program that prepares young people for the rigors of life through education, technically develops athletes to excel in the sport of football, instills values that will assist in producing men and women of character, gets the team involved with the West Seattle community and continues to cultivate the long tradition of Westside Pride!

As the new coaching staff enters its first season, one of their driving initiatives is to provide a positive and safe experience for all students. To facilitate this, we are asking our community, friends and families, to donate to our program. Please understand that all proceeds will directly benefit the student athletes and their experience in the Wildcats Football program.

Right now, the team is in immediate need of the following:

*Equipment (girdles, thigh pads, knee pads, etc.)  for student athletes

*Operational equipment (agility bags, hand shields, pop-up bags)

*Team meals (pre-game team meals, halftime snacks, and fall ball double day snacks)

*Giant Tents for team halftime at SWAC (there are no locker rooms for the team at half-time)

*Funds for transportation to and from games

The West Seattle Football team currently has three ways that you can help with our immediate and long-term goals:

Donate directly to the Football Booster club at our Booster Club for Cats Football GoFundMe page.

Our awesome 2017 WS Football Kick-off t-shirt (you can get one with a blank back as well) for $25 each.

Our cool Elite West Seattle Wildcat socks for $24 a pair.

**To pre-order your T-shirt and socks, contact lildeerpaw@hotmail.com with cash or checks payable to the WS Booster Club.

Thanks, all supporters of the Wildcats football program! Every cent donated will assist the coaches and staff in pouring love and education into our young people through the sport of football!

We look forward to seeing you on Friday nights in the Fall!

Don’t forget to put on your calendars that the first game is September 1, 2017 @ 7:00 pm at SWAC!

The full season schedule can be seen here; if you missed our interview with Coach Fennell after the March announcement that he was joining WSHS, see it here.

READER REPORT: Contamination concern at Lafayette playground

Nannette wanted to make sure others know about this:

I was playing with my kids at Lafayette (Elementary) playground at 10:30 AM today Wednesday, August 9 and discovered a large feces pile on one of the slides. There was also another pile of feces at the bottom of the slide. This is a sanitary issue.. We cleaned off the slide as best as we could. We will contact the school district for help and further cleaning of the slide. we wanted to get the word out to be careful about the slides being clean for children or anyone.

In response to our followup question, Nannette added, “We buried the pile as best as we could in the wood chips using our shoes to slide the chips over. But kids play in wood chips too so that isn’t great. There was only so much I could do while keeping my 22-month-old safe and making sure my 5-year-old was all right too.”

We have an inquiry out to the district.

About the early-morning alarm at Madison Middle School

August 8, 2017 10:08 am
|    Comments Off on About the early-morning alarm at Madison Middle School
 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

Got a couple questions this morning about a fire-alarm response at 3:47 am at Madison Middle School. Since those types of responses sometimes turn out to be triggered by burglars or vandals (or even water-pressure drops), we asked Seattle Fire Department spokesperson Kristin Tinsley what their responders found. Her reply: “The response was for a problem with the sprinkler system; the sprinkler system had triggered an alarm. No signs of vandalism that our crews saw.”

West Seattle PTA Collaborative: New community-wide project, with meet-and-greet next week

Remember the saga of the Sanislo Elementary auction, when the PTA put out a call for help because they had sold so few tickets, they were worried they wouldn’t be able to raise the money needed to fill some of the needs for Sanislo students? That call for help resulted in action – support from all over West Seattle, and as Rebecca Evans described it, “Our outstanding success at our school auction was a direct result of the community support that showed up to support us.” That led to an idea for an ongoing communitywide collaboration, Rebecca added: “I’ve long felt something should be done to narrow the gap between affluent and Title I schools and recently decided to assist that effort by creating the West Seattle PTA Collaborative.”

It started with online discussion and now a face-to-face meet-and-greet is planned for next week, 6:30 pm Tuesday, August 15th, at Southwest Library. Rebecca continues:

The concept of the group is to strengthen the PTA board of each West Seattle school by working collectively and collaboratively to support one another, helping to promote more educational and enrichment equity amongst our community schools. Some PTAs have barely enough members, some are standing room only. Many parents come into the PTA with little knowledge of what to do or how to do it; then there’s those parents who spent their child’s entire school career in the PTA, and of course there are many stops in-between. By bringing all levels together to solicit feedback, advice, tips and guidance, I believe we can improve experiences for parents willing to step into the PTA, and all students in West Seattle.

Any PTA member, or person interested in the PTA, is welcome at the August 15th meet-and-greet; Southwest Library is at 9010 35th SW. Beyond this event, Rebecca says, the group will likely meet monthly, to collaborate in person and to “discuss a particular topic such as fundraising or enrichment.”

NEW HERE? Seattle Public Schools launches online registration

August 7, 2017 1:30 pm
|    Comments Off on NEW HERE? Seattle Public Schools launches online registration
 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

With the 2017-2018 school year just a month away, Seattle Public Schools has overhauled its website, and the new site has a major new feature: Online registration for families who are new to the district. It just launched today – you can start the registration process here.

VIDEO: See inside West Seattle’s first charter school, Summit Atlas, 3 weeks before it opens

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Classes start August 21st at the former supermarket and church that is becoming West Seattle’s first charter school, Summit Atlas.

Today – six months after a ceremonial groundbreaking kicked off extensive remodeling, and days before work begins on an addition – we got our first look inside, with a tour that included future students and their families.

It’s been two and a half years since we broke the news of the charter-middle-and-high-school plan for the property at 9601 35th SW (southwest corner of 35th/Roxbury), discovering an early-stage proposal in city permit-application files.

Former owners Freedom Church/Jesus Center sold the site in 2015 to Washington Charter School Development for $4.75 million. WCSD is the regional branch of a California-based company that specializes in building schools for charter firms like Summit (also California-based) – this is their fourth in Washington, all repurposing existing buildings, WCSD’s James Heugas (a West Seattle resident) noted after today’s tour. (We got a look inside one of the others, Summit Sierra in the International District, a year ago.)

But before we show you what’s been done inside and what’s about to happen outside, some updates:

Read More

ON THE MOVE: 3 Boren portables to be relocated next week

Heads up, in case you see the “No Parking” signs and/or plan to be on the road in the early morning – three portable classrooms will be removed from the Louisa Boren STEM K-8 campus next week, to be relocated to other schools outside West Seattle. The information just received from Seattle Public Schools spokesperson Tom Redman says one portable will be moved from Boren (5950 Delridge Way SW) to Ballard High School early Tuesday (August 1st), and two will be going to Ingraham High School, one each on Wednesday and Thursday (August 2-3). For all moves, Redman says, they’ll be moved via a southbound/eastbound route:

Transports will leave from Louisa Boren at about 3:00-4:00 a.m. to meet SDOT requirements for transports to be off city streets by 6:00 a.m.

These transports are coordinated with required SDOT transport permits and will be accompanied by Seattle Police escorts for additional traffic control as they leave Louisa Boren and head south on Delridge Way towards Roxbury and further to Hwy 509 as they leave West Seattle.

“No parking” signs will be installed on the streets along the north side of Louisa Boren, in order to allow for adequate width in the roadway for the trucks to maneuver the oversized loads.

Additional “no parking” signs may be placed at different locations along the route to allow for adequate width in the roadway.

P.S. While it’s not directly related to this, you might be wondering where the possible move of STEM K-8 itself stands, now that almost two months have passed since the district-led meeting about it. We’re checking on that.

FOLLOWUP: Friends of Roxhill Elementary ‘incredibly grateful’ for pledges so far. Here’s what you can do now

A collaborative art project like that mosaic is part of what Friends of Roxhill Elementary hope to include in their playground project for the school’s move to EC Hughes – and “a pledge of time from an artist or two” is just one of many more ways the community can help the project. Tonight, we have an update from group spokesperson Jenny Rose Ryan, two weeks after an initial round of requests:

West Seattle Community, we thought you’d like to hear some good news.

Friends of Roxhill Elementary has received – in pledge form — about half of the amount needed to meet our $20K match for our playground grant application. Remember, we are going after a $100,000 City of Seattle Neighborhood Matching Fund grant to help build a new playground when we move to E.C. Hughes next year.

This means you – yes, you! – have found resources and pulled together to help us. This is huge and we’re incredible grateful.

We’re so close – we can almost taste it, but it’s time for another push.

We’re looking for in-kind donations of food when we hold events (local restaurants?), volunteer support to paint a mural next summer (high school kids? EC Hughes neighbors?), donations of plants and materials to beautify the space – these pledges all add up now, but don’t even need to happen until next year. Oh, and yes, we’ll take cash, too.

How to Help

Email friendsofroxhill@gmail.com to make a pledge. We won’t collect anything now – we need the pledges for the application (due in September) to demonstrate our community’s commitment and then determine the details of the work plan.

You can also give to a Roxhill parent’s Seattle Marathon GoFundMe, here. We also have a Seattle Marathon team you can join when you sign up to run the full marathon.

Thank you for your help! We are deeply grateful and incredibly humbled by our community’s support so far. We can do this. Together.

West Seattle schools: Gatewood Elementary’s new principal Kyna Williams is on the job

If you’re part of the Gatewood Elementary community, you’ve probably already heard, but the district is now publicly sharing the announcement that the school’s new principal Kyna Williams is on the job as of this month. She formerly led Destiny Charter Middle School in Tacoma. From Superintendent Dr. Larry Nyland‘s letter:

Kyna Williams was one of multiple candidates interviewed by a hiring committee that included school staff, parents, principals, and central office staff before being recommended for the consideration of the Superintendent and Chief of Schools. The committee was impressed with her commitment to social justice and her experience with school culture building. She is a strong instructional leader and relationship builder.

Ms. Williams most recently served as Founding Assistant Principal, and ultimately the Principal at Destiny Middle school in Tacoma, where she created and implemented positive behavior supports and school-wide culture systems and a system of professional learning for educators in a brand-new middle school. She has also served as a school leader in Washington, D.C. where she facilitated teacher engagement programs, coached and supervised teams of teachers, and oversaw a teaching residency program. She has also taught math and science and tutored literacy skills.

Principal Williams earned her Masters in Elementary Education from Chaminade University in Hawaii; her Bachelor of Arts in Music from the University of Minnesota; and was a Teach for America corps member.

I would like to extend my thanks to Principal Connie Aleman for working to create an inclusive environment for all students. She has worked diligently to create systems to support students’ social and emotional well-being so that all students can access learning with success at Gatewood.

Principal Williams is excited to be joining the Gatewood Elementary community, and is looking forward to
working with the students, staff, and families to build a place where all stakeholders have high
expectations of students and believe that every student can succeed.

It was announced in May that former principal Aleman was leaving Gatewood after four years for the newly created job of assistant principal at West Seattle’s most populous elementary, Genesee Hill.

FOLLOWUP: Success for community-led campaign to save Reading Partners tutoring program at Highland Park Elementary

Highland Park Elementary students will NOT lose their volunteer reading tutors after all, thanks to community contributors plus one generous ongoing supporter of the Reading Partners program. Here’s the update from Dina Johnson, the volunteer tutor and community advocate who has been working for more than a month to get the word out:

Just received this from Linda Givler, admin of the “Save Highland Park Reading partners” GoFundMe Page:
The GoFundMe campaign to save the Reading Partners program at Highland Park Elementary School has ended. The page will be left up for a few days to allow everyone to see the latest update.

Together we were able to raise $12,787 in 30 days. I think that is amazing, even though it is short of the $30,000 necessary to continue the program.

ALL IS NOT LOST. An ongoing supporter of the RP program in Seattle, who has chosen to stay anonymous, has designated their annual contribution to make up the difference and allow the Highland Park Reading Partners program to continue this coming school year.

We are very, very fortunate that a Reading Partners supporter has stepped up to help save our Reading Partners program at Highland Park. I know you will all be as excited as I am to continue helping our wonderful little readers next school year.

This was truly a group effort. Thanks to everyone…

Now it is time to celebrate.
(Dina’s P.S.) I’m giddy with delight (and amazement!) We proved that people CARE about schoolchildren in our little corner of Seattle!

SPORTS: Bryan Tupper chosen as new head baseball coach for West Seattle High School

By Patrick Sand and Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog co-publishers

Like his predecessor, West Seattle High School‘s new head baseball coach has deep roots at the school.

Bryan Tupper, a 2002 WSHS graduate, has been announced as the school’s new head baseball coach, successor to Velko Vitalich, who – as reported here a month ago – retired from the role after 31 years.

We talked with Coach Tupper at a local coffee shop this week. His rise to the head-coach job comes after he spent six of the past seven years as an assistant coach for the Wildcats.

He’s a born-and-raised West Seattleite who started playing ball at Bar-S Playfield and played with West Seattle Little League all the way up through seniors. He played in the Pony League, too, for the West Seattle Dodgers.

After college, he wanted to go into coaching, and Coach Vitalich gave him a chance. Since he’s worked with the team for so many years already, he says he’s familiar with the students in the program, and while he’ll have to get to know some of the freshmen, many of them have older siblings with whom he’s already worked at WSHS.

Coach Tupper says his core group for next season has good talent coming along, and he sees a real possibility to build a program that produces teams like the ones who went to state for five consecutive years in the past decade. The building blocks are in place now, he says, to have a competitive team for next year. He says WSHS’s increasing success in sports has encouraged more student athletes to stay at the school rather than switch to independent schools.

Overall, Coach Tupper says, he sees this as a great opportunity – and it’s in his hometown, where his folks still live, too. Now, it’s on to preparing for the 2018 season.

YOU CAN HELP! Here’s what Friends of Roxhill Elementary needs for playground push

(WSB photo: Playground at EC Hughes, mid-June)

While EC Hughes Elementary in Sunrise Heights is getting some renovation work before Roxhill Elementary is moved there in fall of 2018, the project doesn’t include the playground … so, as we reported a month ago, the new support group Friends of Roxhill Elementary is launching a community campaign. Today, from Jenny Rose Ryan, an announcement of the next phase, focusing on ways you can help – with money, materials, and/or volunteer time:

You can also find out more at the upcoming Friends of Roxhill Elementary meeting – 6 pm Thursday, July 20th, at White Center Library (1409 SW 107th) – everyone’s welcome.

FOLLOWUP: Crowdfunding progress toward saving Reading Partners @ Highland Park Elementary School

July 1, 2017 7:16 pm
|    Comments Off on FOLLOWUP: Crowdfunding progress toward saving Reading Partners @ Highland Park Elementary School
 |   Highland Park | How to help | West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

Here’s something heroic you can do right here, right now: Help save the reading-tutor program at Highland Park Elementary. Here’s the latest from Dina Johnson, the volunteer leading the effort:

Update for Save Highland Park Reading Partners. We are at $8,462 of $30k goal!

Donations have been steadily accumulating, many $50 or $100. I update on the Facebook page daily. Someone named Wendy Rush just donated $500 today! I don’t know her, but MANY THANKS to Wendy!

I’m feeling very heartened. Was disappointed by last week’s Summer Book Swap – LOTS of book donations, but almost no one came by to browse. Was it the 95-degree heat that day? Many people missed a chance to get wonderful free books for their kids. Luckily, a 9-year-old girl did grab a complete boxed set of the Little House books. But the complete boxed set of Narnia books was unclaimed…

Thank you to the book donors, though – credit at the used bookstore means RP can add to the student library for all the schools.

If we make $10,000 or more I will be so gratified that people care, although it wouldn’t be enough to save Reading Partners this year. (A hard-working Volunteer Coordinator needs to be hired to make everything run smoothly for the volunteer program.)

In that case, the donations will be refunded. THANKS to 99 generous donors so far!! I’m sure someone will be eager to claim the 100th spot of honor!

You can do that – or maybe even be the 101st or 102nd or beyond, if you don’t see this until later tonight, or Sunday, or … – just go here.

TOMORROW: School board talks Arbor Heights, Denny solar; $419 paddle-cam tickets; ‘capacity’…

Seattle Public Schools classes may be over for the year, but the School Board still has work to do, and its agenda for tomorrow (Wednesday, June 28th), starting at 4:15 pm at district HQ (3rd/Lander in SODO) has these items of interest:

SOLAR POWER FOR ARBOR HEIGHTS, DENNY: When the new Arbor Heights Elementary was designed, there was a mention that it would be solar-ready for the future. According to an item on Wednesday’s board agenda, the future is approaching – AH and Denny International Middle School are two of six schools around the district planned for a pilot project. The documentation says AH is proposed for “1 ballasted rooftop array consisting of a total of 412 modules of 72 cell monocrystalline, 345W format” and Denny for “3 roof-penetrating rail-mounted rooftop arrays consisting of a total of 408 modules of 72 cell monocrystalline, 345W format.” The project has a price tag of more than $2 million but the district is getting a grant covering half a million, and says the sites were chosen for energy savings that will provide a “positive cash flow.” You can read the documentation here.

SCHOOL-BUS PADDLE-CAM TICKETS: The district’s been working on this for a while and now is looking at going full-speed-ahead with cameras on school-bus paddles, to detect violations and send tickets. One of those tickets will cost you $419. Of that amount, the agenda document says, $69 will go to the provider American Traffic Solutions. They’re expecting more than 9,100 violations a year, to be processed by the King County Sheriff’s Office (which also will get a share of the proceeds). Total expenses are projected to be more than half the expected revenue, so the district expects to net about $1.3 million a year.

CAPACITY: The board meeting will start with a “work session” at 4:15 pm, and part of it addresses the topic of “capacity.” No documentation in the agenda yet, but “capacity” is the umbrella topic that includes the possible move of Louisa Boren STEM K-8, so we’ll be monitoring.

SUMMER CAMP! Basketball skills with West Seattle High School girls’ team

June 27, 2017 9:04 am
|    Comments Off on SUMMER CAMP! Basketball skills with West Seattle High School girls’ team
 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools | WS & Sports

First day of summer vacation for Seattle Public Schools students, and some summer-camp decisions have yet to be made. If a 3rd- through 8th-grader in your house is interested in basketball, here’s an offer: Four days of training with the West Seattle High School girls-basketball team – which benefits from the proceeds – focusing on “integrating individual skill into game concepts, (concentrating on) dribbling, shooting, ball handling, footwork, and game-situational skills and drills.” 9 am-noon each day, Monday, July 17th, through Thursday, July 20th, at the WSHS Gym (3000 California SW). $100 for the whole week – you can register right now here, and then pay here. Questions? wshsgirlsbball@gmail.com

West Seattle scene: School’s out!

Thanks to SBRE for today’s in-bus photo – as we remind you again that Seattle Public Schools are getting out an hour early today, last day of classes. Summer vacation continues until the first day of classes, September 6th (for kindergarteners, September 11th). And schedules will be different next year, as announced on June 15th, including weekly early dismissals on Wednesdays. Happy summer to all!

SUNDAY: Highland Park book swap to help turn the pages for campaign to save tutoring program

That short video by Dina Johnson tells the story of how supporters are hoping to save the Reading Partners one-on-one-tutoring program at Highland Park Elementary. We first mentioned it here last weekend; their next event is a book swap tomorrow (Sunday, June 25th) afternoon at Highland Park Improvement Club (1116 SW Holden). It’s free – bring books, for kids and/or adults! – and also a chance to find out more about the program and how volunteers are trying to save it. Their main fundraiser is a GoFundMe page that has now passed $6,000 but has a long way to go to the $30,000 needed by July 15th to keep the program from being dropped at HPES.

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