West Seattle schools 3567 results

CONGRATULATIONS: 32 Chief Sealth IHS students earn State Seal of Biliteracy

Thanks to Chief Sealth International High School teacher Noah Zeichner for the photo and report:

Chief Sealth International High School awarded the Washington State Seal of Biliteracy to 32 students, about 12% of the graduating senior class, at Thursday evening’s Senior Awards Nights. Students can qualify for the Seal of Biliteracy through a language competency test or by earning a score of 4 or higher in an IB language course. Earning the Seal implies that students are not just bilingual (speaking), but biliterate (reading and writing) in at least one language in addition to English. This year, Chief Sealth awarded the Seal of Biliteracy to students who read and write in Spanish, Amharic, Japanese, Vietnamese, Mandarin Chinese, Somali, and Oromo.

Chief Sealth administers world language competency tests each fall in several languages as part of its international programming. The school aims to recognize the diverse linguistic skills that students bring to the school community. Several Chief Sealth Seal of Biliteracy recipients were also recognized at the June 7 Seattle School Board meeting.

CONGRATULATIONS! Madison and Denny boys play for city soccer championship

FIRST REPORT, 9:54 PM SATURDAY: Congratulations to the boys-soccer teams of Madison Middle School and Denny International Middle School for playing for the city championship this afternoon! Thanks to Jodi Bennett for the first game report and photo:

Under sunny skies and the shadow of the Space Needle, Madison Middle School won the city championship for boys’ soccer today at Memorial Stadium. The final match came down to a good old-fashioned rivalry of West Seattle – Denny vs Madison. Final score was 3-2 with Sam Dagg and Ben Lapchis scoring the goals for Madison. It was a nice ending to a great season. Go Bulldogs!

ADDED 11:23 AM: From Denny principal Jeff Clark:

On Saturday, Denny and Madison both won semi-final matches at Memorial Stadium to set up an all-West Seattle city-wide championship game! Denny had won the West Seattle Cup earlier in the season. On Saturday, it was Madison’s turn as they won a highly competitive match 3 to 2 to win the championship. Congratulations to the Bulldogs on the win!

It was an amazing year for Denny boys soccer — we are very proud of all of our players, coaches, supporters and fans! A special thank you to Coaches Holland, Gutierrez, Vargas, and Tschida, Athletic Director Rodriguez, and everyone who has supported and encouraged our players all season! Go Dolphins!

After 31 years as West Seattle High School baseball coach, Velko Vitalich ends a home run of a career


(WSB photo: Baseball coach and 1973 WSHS alum Velko Vitalich)

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

With a record of 398-256, West Seattle High School baseball coach Velko Vitalich has decided a 31-year career is long enough.

“I really enjoyed this year’s group of kids,” he told WSB in a conversation at WSHS this week. “It was a great way to end it.”

So why stop now?

“As much as I enjoy it …it’s getting harder to do – physically, there’s a lot to do, it’s draining.” He said he sees “good young coaches” at meetings and thinks there’s someone out there to take his place. “I probably do too many things too long,” he laughed, saying he “just had to decide” – and during the season, he did.

It’s only been four years since the most-successful of all those years – when WSHS finished #2 in the state in 2013:

(May 25, 2013, postgame photo by Greg Slader)

The coach keeps track of his alums. Read More

CONGRATULATIONS! Friends of Sealth scholarships for 3 students

Thanks to Debbie Taylor from the Friends of Sealth Scholarship Committee for the report and photo:

Friends of Sealth (a non-profit organization supporting the 5 A’s of Chief Sealth: Academics, Athletics, Arts, Activities, and Alumni) was privileged to award scholarships to three Chief Sealth International High School students at Senior Awards night last night held in the school auditorium.

Pictured left to right: Katherine Fry, Performing Arts recipient; Michelle Ly, Academic recipient; Laurel Glatzmayer, Athletic recipient. Friends of Sealth congratulates the dedication of these three individuals to their education and the disciplines for which they were awarded.

HIGHLAND PARK ELEMENTARY PLAYGROUND: Close to construction!

As mentioned in our West Seattle Thursday highlights this morning, Highland Park Elementary School‘s playground project has a dine-out fundraiser continuing this evening at Zippy’s Giant Burgers in White Center (open until 9 at 9614 14th SW). We recently asked the HPE PTA how the project is going, since the city mentioned some grant money had been awarded. Here’s the update from PTA vice president Connie Wolf:

After three years of work on our playground project, we are ready to break through the asphalt. Construction drawings from the Pomegranate Center along with funding from the Neighborhood Matching Fund’s Community Partnership Fund and King County Youth Sports Facilities Grant have us set to build Phase 1 of our new playground.

This phase will include installation of a net climber, hill slides, a boulder scramble, an ADA ramp, and a new welcoming community entryway. Two key principles of the design are a natural landscape that encourages imaginative play for our children and a welcoming place for our school and neighborhood.

In order to ensure the funds on hand will cover all of the construction work, we had to pull certain elements out of our base bid. Gateway artwork, landscaping, and a seat wall are pieces of this phase that we are currently fundraising for.

Phase 1 should be completed this fall, and then we will begin working toward the second half of the project which will include more play equipment: a tree deck, log steps, and boulder stacks.

You can support the HPE playground project by participating in our dine outs (thank you Proletariat Pizza, Zippy’s Giant Burgers, Chipotle, and Mioposto), attending our fall playground celebration (currently being planned), and volunteering in our work parties (more info on that to come).

Thank you to everyone who has helped to create this incredible play space for our children.

YOU CAN HELP: Book donations sought for local students

That’s a scene that one local teacher hopes to see outside the classroom this summer. And she needs your help. Here’s the announcement:

Roxhill Elementary teacher Neysa Turner aims to keep kids reading this summer. Students need continuous exposure to high-quality books to accelerate growth and continue reaching for new adventures in life and literature. We are looking for book donations to build a mobile lending library for K-12 South Sound students.

Book donations can be dropped off at the following locations:

1. Roxhill Elementary: 9430 30th Ave SW, M-F 7:30 am-3 pm

2. Also at local business Flourish Beauty Salon and Spa, 5962 Fauntleroy Way SW, M-F 10 am- 7 pm; Sat-Sun 10 am- 4 pm

CONGRATULATIONS! Louisa Boren STEM K-8 awards @ district Science/Engineering Fair

Even more local success at the recent Seattle Public Schools district-wide Science and Engineering Fair! Today we received this report, with photos, about Louisa Boren STEM K-8 students’ achievements:

Middle School students from Louisa Boren STEM K-8 participated in the Seattle Public Schools Science and Engineering Fair at the Museum of Flight on June 1st. Of our seven entries in the competition, six were awarded prizes by judges. All four 7th-grade entries, representing our Career and Technical Education Program (CTE) took home awards. 6th Grade received two awards.

Their science teacher, Craig Parsley, had this to say about all Boren’s participants: “Science instruction has got to change with the times. These students represent the kind of innovative thinking and perseverance that we want to see in all students. I am proud of their work.”

Engineering Grade 7 (CTE Students)
Evalinn Kas – Best Data Analysis – Thermoelectric Generation – (Electricity from Automotive Tailpipe Waste-Heat)
Bree Hopkins – Best Aeronautical Engineering – Forward-Deployed Mars Lander Decelerator – (Forward-Mount Parabolic Decelerator)

Science Grade 7 (CTE Students)
Nyjel Sebastion – Most Original Science Project – Spin-ergy (Rotational Torque of Wind Turbines)
Kathryn Soria – Best Data Analysis – Trombe Wall vs. Water Wall (A Study of Heat Retention in Concrete vs. Water)

Engineering Grade 6
Lucca Castillo and Maurice Scott – Most Likely to be Patented – Infrared Black Ice Detector

Grade 6 Science
June Pierson and Esme Jablonsky – Judges Special Recognition – Do the Wave – (Modeling Wave Shape Changes in High Velocity Winds)

Also participating were Kai Perala and Connor Aikas, with their entry, Pneumatic Underwater Retrieval Drone.

CONGRATULATIONS! Metro League awards for Chief Sealth IHS, including Evan Moe on all-league first team

Two notes from Chief Sealth International High School:

From athletic director Ernest Policarpio:

Congratulations to Evan Moe from Chief Sealth for being selected 1st team all-league in baseball two years in a row. He will be playing tomorrow in the All-Metro game tomorrow at 3:30PM at SWAC. Admission is free.

The Southwest Athletic Complex is across from Sealth, at 2801 SW Thistle.

Meantime, a texter sent us this photo of Coach Policarpio with another announcement:

The Sportsmanship Award is for Sealth athletes and coaches, we are told. Congratulations to all!

SPECIAL SENDOFF: ‘Kindergarten whisperer’ teacher Jim Herk retiring; ‘photos, well wishes, stories’ sought

If you have memories of “Mr. Herk” to share – that can help with a special sendoff that’s in the works! Here’s the announcement:

Please help us in honoring a special teacher who has served our local community.

After 34 years of teaching, Jim Herk, kindergarten teacher at Genesee Hill Elementary, is retiring this June.

“Mr. Herk” taught for 14 years at MLK, Jr. Elementary in Seattle before switching to Schmitz Park Elementary where he has been teaching kindergarteners for 20 years (this year at the new Genesee Hill Elementary). Acknowledged by many as the “Kindergarten Whisperer,” Mr. Herk is known for his calm and unruffled demeanor. He has helped more than 700 youngsters successfully acclimate to their first year of elementary school, from the most rowdy to the most timid of children. Mr. Herk is known for leading the traditional school Halloween parade, the annual Kindergarten Pumpkin Patch trip, and the annual Kindergarten Graduation BBQ and low-tide party.

We need your help! Please send photos, well wishes, and stories to HerkRetirement@gmail.com by Monday, June 12th. These will be organized into a Memory/Retirement Book for Mr. Herk. We can also include notes posted to this blog post. Photos do not have to include Mr. Herk. We also want photos of your child in Kindergarten or photos that highlight the school Halloween Parade or Low-Tide Graduation BBQ.

Please also spread the word to parents and students who may have had Mr. Herk as a teacher years ago. Help us fill the book and send off Mr. Herk with great memories and appreciation.

CONGRATULATIONS! Denny IMS awards @ district Science/Engineering Fair

June 4, 2017 3:27 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

More news of West Seattle achievements at the Seattle Public Schools middle-school science/engineering fair this past Thursday night! The report and photos are from Denny International Middle School principal Jeff Clark:

On Thursday evening, Denny Dolphins attended the annual SPS District Science and Engineering Fair at the Museum of Flight. As always, our entire science department was in attendance to support our scholars as they presented their great, innovative projects. A big thank you to our awesome science teachers: Mr. Shigenaka, Ms. Sanchez. Ms. Frost, Mr. Gutierrez, Mr. Evans, Mr. Nelson, Ms. Koressel, and Mr. Albrecht!

We’re proud of all the scholars that represented Denny and hope they had a great time celebrating their accomplishments with their peers from across the district. Dolphins that took home awards from the event inlcude:

6th Grade
Award for Best Environmental Sustainability Project:
Andrea Alcantar & Ella Christensen

7th Grade
Award for Best Field Study Project:
Joselyn Panganiban

8th Grade
Judge’s Special Recognition Award – Engineering Design with Largest Social Impact:
Etnna Elizalde Castañeda

8th Grade
Rosalind Franklin Award for Excellence in the Life Sciences:
Ilse Schmitz & Kate Viacrucis

(Thanks to the school administrators, teachers, staffers, and families who continue to share news about student accomplishments, and other information, with WSB so that we can let the entire community know – editor@westseattleblog.com any time – and if it’s urgent/breaking, text/call 206-293-6302 – thank you!)

VIDEO: Happy hundredth! West Seattle High School alums’ picture-perfect party

June 4, 2017 12:40 am
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 |   West Seattle history | West Seattle news | West Seattle schools


(Photo by Jean Sherrard)

Usually the biggest excitement at the annual West Seattle High School All-School Reunion is indoors.


(WSB photos from here on down)

Not this time.

With WSHS celebrating the 100th anniversary of the building’s opening, the Southwest Seattle Historical Society and WSHS Alumni Association collaborated to organize a “Group Hug” photo outside the school’s historic north entrance. SWSHS executive director Clay Eals said the Pacific Rim Equipment-provided lift had the highest-ever potential altitude (43′) for one of their trademark photos:

(2 am update) Photographer Jean Sherrard‘s view from up there is atop this story. (Back to original report) He’s at center in the photo below, with SWSHS’s Brad Chrisman at left and Eals at right:

The hundreds who gathered for the photo enjoyed music by the West Seattle Big Band – founded as a WSHS alumni group, now directed by Jim Edwards:

The crowd also heard from one of their most famous fellow alums, King County Executive Dow Constantine, Class of 1980:

Some alums streamed back inside after the photo, through the doors beneath the balloon arch:

One display remained – every year the reunion gives a special spotlight to whichever class is celebrating the 50th anniversary of its graduation, and this year, it was the Class of 1967:

After the memories, music, and photography, alums were invited to continue the celebration an afterparty at Whisky West in Morgan Junction.

SUNDAY AFTERNOON UPDATE: A downloadable version of the photo is now available from SWSHS, with video from the lift and the ground to be added within a few days.

FROM WESTSIDE TO THE BIG APPLE: West Seattle High School Jazz Bands visit New York City

(UPDATED SUNDAY with another photo)

Thanks to parent Steve White for the report and photos on West Seattle High School musicians’ cross-country journey!

The Jazz 1 and Jazz 2 bands (directed by Ethan Thomas) flew to New York City yesterday to participate in a workshop at Lincoln Center. While here we are also touring the 9/11 Memorial, seeing a Broadway show and some other sights. Last night we attended the “World of Monk” concert at Lincoln Center featuring the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra led by Wynton Marsalis.

And tonight, their travels took them to “The Lion King” at the Minskoff Theater.

ADDED SUNDAY AFTERNOON: Another photo from Steve, who reports: “The group went on tours of the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, the Empire State Building and are spending the evening in Times Square.”

The musicians are headed back home on Monday.

CONGRATULATIONS! Madison Middle School students’ success @ district Science/ Engineering Fair

June 3, 2017 10:15 am
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools


(Above, Dahlia Sebastian; below, Rowan Preedy)

Congratulations to the Madison Middle School students whose scientific achievements landed them in a districtwide spotlight! Thanks to science teacher Fred Jenner for the photos and report:

Madison MS had four finalists submitting projects at Thursday night’s District Science Fair at The Museum of Flight. Sixth graders Elliott Allen, Dahlia Sebastian, Rowan Preedy, and Ian Iserman showed their projects to a large crowd of visitors and twenty plus judges. Dahlia Sebastian’s engineering project “The New and Improved String Instrument Cleaner of the 21st Century” won Best Overall project for engineering design and Rowan Preedy’s engineering project “Automated Chicken Door Closer” won Most Original Engineering Project award for the entire district’s 6th grade category field of projects.


(Above, Elliott Allen; below, Ian Iserman)

This year there were more engineering design projects than science inquiry projects. Congratulations to all of them for their awesome work and for making Madison Middle School proud!

SATURDAY: West Seattle HS All-School Reunion with centennial ‘Group Hug’ photo

June 2, 2017 9:34 pm
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 |   West Seattle history | West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

One more reminder as the weekend begins – this year’s West Seattle High School All-School Reunion is bigger than ever because of the centennial celebration – WSHS opened 100 years ago. In honor of that, alums, students, staff, and all others interested are invited to gather for a “Group Hug” photo on the north side of the school, coordinated with the Southwest Seattle Historical Society. Here’s Jim Biava of the WSHS Alumni Association with the invitation:

The All-School Reunion starts at 4 pm; gather for the photo at 6 pm. What happens inbetween – and afterward – is listed in our most-recent preview.

VIDEO: Louisa Boren STEM K-8 parents, supporters demand district restate its permanent status rather than consider a move

(UPDATED 4:59 PM with district slide deck from meeting)

(WSB video of entire Thursday night meeting at Louisa Boren STEM K-8)

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

“Say it!”

Just a few years after Seattle Public Schools designated the former Louisa May Boren Junior High School as the permanent home of West Seattle’s STEM K-8 school, its parents and supporters found themselves last night demanding that district officials re-state that status.

Which they eventually did – but without an accompanying guarantee the school won’t be moved.

The campus’s past as an interim site is the main reason it’s in the district’s crosshairs right now for a potential return to that status, the STEM K-8 community was told during the boisterous briefing meeting (previewed here and here).

Associate superintendent Dr. Flip Herndon opened the hour-plus meeting by explaining that the district expects to be constructing and renovating schools “for the next 15 years, at least” as its enrollment continues to grow and its buildings continue to age.

Capital Projects and Planning director Richard Best went through the slides, starting with a recap of the schools recently built and renovated in West Seattle, including last fall’s opening of the new Arbor Heights and Genesee Hill elementaries, with the district expecting to grow to 55,000 students soon. He directed people to the Facilities Master Plan on the SPS website for an overview. They’re adding dozens of classrooms each year. Slides showed most elementary schools trending up, though they’re wondering if it’s plateau’ing. (Update – we requested the slide deck and received it this afternoon – PDF here, embedded below:)

Best said that adding special education capacity at every school also leads to campus-capacity challenges, as well as class-size-reduction mandates. They’ll be working with enrollment planners over the summer. And he noted that “in West Seattle we are seeing elementary growth occur more rapidly in the northern section than in the southern section.”

Capacity planning also involves looking at schools’ outdated systems that might not support technology – so those “rise to the top of the list to meet the educational needs of our students and staff.” That will figure into the 2019 BEX V levy. He added that school modernization means that “of the 102 schools that we have, over a third have historical landmark designations, so we can’t tear those buildings down.” (Those include EC Hughes, being modernized right now so that Roxhill Elementary can be moved there in a year, as we’ve been reporting.)

So, that all came down to this: Boren is “one of our largest school sites left to be utilized as an interim location,” Best said, drawing boos. Read More

WEST SEATTLE SALMON: Fauntleroy Creek finales for fry releases, smolt monitoring


(Nancie Hernandez with Salmon in the Schools – Seattle, leads Concord second graders as they explore habitat near Fauntleroy Creek. Photos by Mark Ahlness)

Two seasonal salmon milestones have just been reached at Fauntleroy Creek, Judy Pickens reports:

On Wednesday, Fauntleroy Creek volunteers hosted the last of 700+ students who visited Fauntleroy Park over the past five weeks for salmon releases.


(Concord International students leave Fauntleroy Park after the last of 19 salmon releases at Fauntleroy Creek)

They brought 1,800 coho fry reared since January in area schools through the Salmon in the Schools program.

This week also marked the end of monitoring smolts migrating out to Fauntleroy Cove. Since mid-March, twice-daily checking of upper and lower traps documented that 32 coho smolts had survived their year in the creek, up from 19 in 2016. They’ll put on weight in nearshore habitat, then head to open water before returning to spawn in two years.

The next big seasonal event: Volunteers will watch for returning spawners this fall. Seven showed up last year – after zero in 2015, 19 in 2014, zero in 2013, and a record 274 counted in 2012.

‘CHANGE THE WORLD’ PROJECTS: The 8 problems Explorer West Middle School eighth-graders are tackling this year

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

It’s a challenge, a lesson, and empowerment.

Every year, eighth graders at Explorer West Middle School (WSB sponsor) are exhorted, invited, and assigned to “Change the World.”

That’s the theme of the group projects they must complete and present before leaving EWMS and moving on to high school.

We’ve featured some in past years – two years ago, a group that wanted to make sure kids of all abilities had a place to play, and made a difference in a local project; last year we featured a group advocating for expanding the availability of healthful food.

This year’s topics were, according to teacher Tim Owens, as chosen by students, all relating to sustainability:

– Bullying of students with disabilities
– Sexual harassment and assault in schools
– Immigrant rights
– Assistance for refugees
– Sex trafficking
– Youth homelessness
– Depression among adolescents
– Gender inequality (regarding pay)

Along with group projects, EWMS students invited world-changers to speak with them about some of those problems and what is being/can be done about them.

We were there on Tuesday afternoon as the entire school gathered in the gym to hear from four people representing organizations working on civil/human rights, and then moved on to classrooms where the eight groups of eighth-graders made their project presentations.
Read More

IT TAKES A PENINSULA: Sanislo Elementary’s kids are counting on you

So many things that should be basics for students are now “extras.” So, along with raising and educating kids, parents and teachers have to be crowdfunders and event planners, among other things. Some schools’ core communities have resources to draw on … some don’t. In the latter category is the little elementary school in a wooded corner of Puget Ridge, Sanislo. Its longtime tagline has been “the small school with big ideas.” One big idea: Ask the wider community for support. Rebecca Evans hopes you’ll answer the call:

Sanislo Elementary’s Tropical Nights annual auction is next Friday, June 9th at 6 pm. WE HAVE ONLY SOLD 40 out of 200 tickets! While desperation is not really my thing, I’m afraid we will really let the students down if I don’t make a serious call for help.

We are a Title I school and are already limited on financially capable parents, community support and attendees to combat this. Other neighborhood schools in the area have the capability to raise anywhere between 80-120k at their auctions…we have a goal of 5k.

Underserved students have a much higher chance of resorting to unhealthy activity in life like violence, crime, and drugs when not supported otherwise. With 70% of our students receiving free or reduced lunch, a high percentage of refugee families trying to assimilate to a new environment, and an 18% homeless rate, our students are, statistically, primary targets for these outcomes.

Through your support, we have the ability to re-direct mindsets, perceptions and natural barriers to success by providing educational and enrichment EQUITY to help ALL our students become contributing community members by way of support services and enrichment programs.

Please consider supporting the youth in your community by purchasing a ticket and joining us for a night of great fun, food, and music.

We have Two Story Zori, a popular Island band who will be performing and lots of fantastic items for bidding!

You can purchase tickets at www.sanislo.org, where you can also donate to the school’s efforts, even if you aren’t able to make the event!

Please please please consider being a part of changing the narrative! The difference you can make through this small contribution could be life-lasting for our students.

Tickets are only $10 online in advance, including a drink, and the party’s at the legendary Highland Park Improvement Club.

Move STEM K-8 so Boren could co-house Alki and Lafayette? Ahead of tomorrow’s meeting, district explains

As mentioned here last week, Seattle Public Schools reps will be at Louisa Boren STEM K-8 tomorrow night for a meeting about the possibility that the district will seek to move the school to another building.

The STEM community has since received more elaboration from associate superintendent Flip Herndon about what’s being considered and why. He says that as the district plans its February 2019 BEX V ballot measure, with possible school renovation/reconstruction projects including Alki and Lafayette Elementaries, they’re assessing what they have for interim sites – and finding the inventory lacking. Boren had long been an interim site, Herndon notes, and is bigger than what’s left around the city. His statement says Alki and Lafayette might be rebuilt at the same time, and that would “require a site to accommodate more than 1,000 elementary students.” Herndon’s message continues:

Current possibilities on interim locations would still be John Marshall (in use until 2021), Original Van Asselt (in use 2018-2020), Roxhill, Schmitz Park, Webster (won’t be open for any use until 2020).

The possibility of having Boren used as an interim site, as it has been in the past, would clearly have an impact on the STEM K-8 School and any move would require that any new space would be able to meet the facility needs of the program, which would include lab spaces and rooms that are able to meet the academic needs of all students. We realize that there are some concerns about needs at any site they include spaces to support CTE programs, science, two PE teachers, athletics, seven special education programs, preschool, technology integration, and middle school programming in general. Furthermore, STEM K-8 will have experienced dramatic change and growth for four consecutive years through 2017-18. Moving to a facility with significant limitations will disrupt efforts to build consistency and stability in a new K-8 program. Timing is a challenge as well. Work has to be done in preparation for any site, interim or not, in the 2017-19 timeframe to be prepared for school needs. We are also looking at the balance of options within clusters of schools. We are trying to make sure every middle school attendance area has additional options for students and families.

We are having the conversations now so we can get the perspective and understanding of impacts before we make any final decisions on how we will be able to accommodate our physical capacity needs for the next 10-20 years. These decisions and conversations are not taken lightly and they are helping to have SPS be able to meet multiple demands from multiple communities. We are looking at making some decisions, at the earliest, in October 2017 and at the latest January 2018.

Meantime, the STEM PTA is making its case about why the school needs to stay at the location designated its permanent site in 2013, rather than make a move considered likely to be to the former Schmitz Park Elementary campus:

• In its current location, STEM is able to serve all of West Seattle. By contrast, the boundaries of Schmitz Park’s northwest location would negatively impact equitable access to the school for students in the community.

• STEM is the only option school in the Denny Middle School service area, and has a geographic zone aligned with West Seattle Elementary. That geozone would change if the school moves to Schmitz Park, which means placement of students from the less diverse, more affluent neighborhoods of West Seattle would take priority over students living in the central and south areas.

• The current capacity of the Schmitz Park building is 216 without portables. The public voted to approve the BEX IV levy, in part, to get children out of portables. Moving a school from an adequate site to one where 60% of students would be in portables disregards the wishes of the taxpayers and the goal of the District to provide permanent classrooms for West Seattle’s growing student population.

• STEM provides a unique project-based curriculum. The high demand for this type of curriculum, as demonstrated by our projected 2017-18 enrollment of 539 (and waitlist of 189), will continue to grow and can only be accommodated at Boren. STEM’s Special Education families depend on the valuable services offered at the school – any disruption to these services is unacceptable.

• Schmitz Park was designed as an elementary school and does not have the physical infrastructure to support middle-school programs and activities.

• A move to Schmitz Park will create logistical hardships for families living in the southern neighborhoods of West Seattle, increase transportation costs for the school district, and increase vehicle traffic in the residential neighborhood surrounding the location.

Thursday night’s meeting is at 6:30 pm at STEM K-8 (5950 Delridge Way SW).

COUNTDOWN: 10 days to first-ever Roll Hawks 5K benefiting Chief Sealth IHS

May 31, 2017 10:21 am
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools | WS & Sports

It’s fun to be first!

On June 10th, you can claim that label just by participating in the first-ever Roll Hawks 5K at Lincoln Park, presented by the Chief Sealth International High School PTSA to benefit the school’s cross-country team. You can register right now by going here – all registered runners get “a T-shirt, bag of local discounts, and smiles along the entire course.” The Roll Hawks 5K is set to start at 9 am Saturday, June 10th, near the waterfront picnic shelters at the park.

COUNTDOWN: 4 days to West Seattle High School centennial celebration, All-School Reunion, ‘Group Hug’ photo

May 30, 2017 7:05 pm
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 |   West Seattle history | West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

Our photo of West Seattle High School‘s north side is from last Saturday evening, around the same time that the big All-School Reunion and Centennial Celebration will be wrapping up THIS Saturday (June 3rd). Reunion planners have just sent full details of how the event will unfold – including the “Group Hug” photo in which all community members (not just alums, students, and staffers) are invited to participate:

West Seattle High School Alumni Association, along with the Southwest Seattle Historical Society, will be celebrating the 100th anniversary of the opening of our school building at the 2017 All School Reunion on June 3rd.

This year’s event will have a special community photo to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the landmark West Seattle High School building, during which the West Seattle Big Band will be performing.

2017 Schedule of Events

4:00 – 4:30 pm
Pick up programs, name tag, and roam the halls

4:30 – 5:15 pm
Individual Class Reunions in assigned rooms

4:30 – 5:15 pm
“92 Years of Westside Pride” video in the Theater

5:15 – 6:15 pm
Presentations in the Theater: Hall of Fame induction, Scholarships Awarded, Recognition of the 50th Reunion of the Class of 1967

6:15 – 6:30 pm
Assemble outside the North Entrance for the Group Hug Photo

6:30 pm
Photo shoot – please be prompt

All are invited to join us for the event. For more information, or to volunteer to help, contact Jim Biava, All School Reunion chair, jim@jimbiava.com, or Clay Eals, executive director, Southwest Seattle Historical Society, clay.eals@loghousemuseum.info.

WSHS All-School Reunion After-Party

And finally, join us at one of West Seattle’s newest and coolest pubs (21 and over), Whisky West (6451 California SW), after the West Seattle High School All-School Reunion. Whisky West is sponsoring the event, with funds raised going to the WSHS Alumni Association.

Grab a bite from the tantalizing menu, catch up with friends and dance the night away with the Nitemates, a well-loved band made up entirely of fellow alumni members who have together been delivering classic rock since 1962. They too are contributing to our alumni association – come check out special music-related auction items to lucky bid-winners! And special appearances by the Brian and Janie Show.

Custom-designed drinks to honor our school, with awesome music and classmates, a beautiful venue in The ‘Hood – what’s not to love?

There will be a silent auction at the ASR with a lineup of exciting purchases to bid on, and a live auction of two music-related items at the after-party.

CONGRATULATIONS! Denny International Middle School staff honored for ‘leadership and inspiration’

Denny International Middle School was honored by Seattle Public Schools superintendent Dr. Larry Nyland after a presentation at the School Board’s mid-May meeting. Principal Jeff Clark shares the photo and report, saying the staff was:

… recognized by Dr. Nyland for continued success in eliminating opportunity gaps in math and literacy! Congratulations to all of the Denny scholars, staff, and families on this special honor!

We were presented with a framed certificate of appreciation stating, “In recognition of Denny International Middle School’s commitment to eliminating opportunity gaps for historically underserved students. We are fortunate in Seattle Public Schools to have a number of ‘positive outlier’ schools that continue to provide leadership and inspiration for our community. Seattle Public Schools recognizes and acknowledges Denny International Middle School’s hard work, success, and innovation. Denny International Middle School continues to ‘Eliminate Opportunity Gaps’ for our students.

The superintendent also spotlighted Denny’s achievement in his May 19th weekly memo to the board (page 4), noting that the key strategies at Denny include:

o Positive belief in the capability of each and every one of their Denny scholars.
o Standards-based curriculum
o Common units and multiple formative assessments
o Standards-based grading

The memo also mentioned another recent Denny achievement spotlighted here, regional competition in underwater robotics.

SPORTS: West Seattle High School state track-meet achievements, including Cass Elliott’s record-time championship


(Photo by Kristin Arvidson)

West Seattle High School‘s achievements at the state 3A track-and-field meet include a championship and meet record. Head coach Will Harrison reports the meet highlights:

West Seattle junior Cass Elliott‘s outstanding 2017 season culminated with a state championship in the 300 meter hurdles on Saturday at Mount Tahoma High School. Elliott set the 3A state meet record in the prelims on Friday with a time of 37.61 seconds, but that mark did not last long, as he shattered it in the final with a time of 37.11 seconds – the fastest time in the state this entire year for any classification. He also finished 8th in the 110 meter hurdles (15.39 seconds).


(Photo by Erik Bell)

Sophomore Chloe Cunliffe (above) finished runner-up in the pole vault competition on Saturday with a mark of 12 feet. She later took 5th in the long jump with a leap of 17 feet, 5.5 inches.

Junior Joe-Kirk Woodbury (below), ranked 16th entering the meet, finished 12th in the boys discus throw at 131 feet, 10 inches.


(Photo by Erik Bell)

In team standings, the West Seattle boys finished 27th, while the girls were 23rd. See full results here.

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