West Seattle, Washington
Maybe you have the perfect idea for this school project! Sent by Adrienne Ollerenshaw:
The Seattle Department of Neighborhoods’ Small Sparks Matching Fund awarded Louisa Boren STEM K-8 funding to install a buddy bench and repaint the blacktop games on the school playground. A buddy bench is a bench where a child can sit if they need a friend. Others will see them and invite them to play.
The school is requesting artwork ideas from school and community members for under the buddy bench. Sketches can include up to four colors. If you would like to submit an idea, email drawings with your name and email address, to firstname.lastname@example.org or drop them off at the Louisa Boren STEM K-8 (5950 Delridge Way SW) front office before Friday, April 26th. There will be a design selection meeting at Delridge Library (5423 Delridge Way SW), April 27th, from 12:00-12:30, where community members are welcome to come and help select artwork for under the bench.
The art would be a painting on the playground blacktop, 6′ x 6′ maximum, “that promotes friendship, kindness, acceptance, and love.”
Set your calendar for June 1 – when you can enjoy a night out knowing you’re doing something important in addition to having fun! From Amanda Kirk on behalf of the Sanislo Elementary PTA:
We are a small local school located in the Puget Ridge neighborhood of West Seattle. This year the auction is going to be at The Brockey Center at South Seattle College on June 1st, 2019 at 6 pm. Admission to the auction is $40 per person and we hope you consider joining us.
Sanislo Elementary School is building a network of dedicated individuals from throughout our community whose support and passion helps increase the chances of success for our children. Last year at Sanislo, while we had a goal of raising just $20,000, we ended up exceeding this goal by 50%. We raised $30,000 thanks to all of your donations to Sanislo! The school used this money to support: mindfulness/social emotional learning, a learning garden, and scholarships for after-school enrichment programs.
This year our need is even greater. I interviewed key stakeholders including the Principal in order to determine what aspect of the school was in greatest need of support. One of the largest challenges the school is facing is the increasing age of the books and other instruction materials. Our children are struggling to experience the joy of learning and self discovery partially because the average age of their books is more than 10 years old! Our library has become out of touch with reality and the children are not as motivated to participate in self-guided learning as children at other schools. Help us bring the joy of learning to our children.
Our annual auction is coming up soon! We hope you can join us once again in supporting educational equity. Come enjoy an evening of fun with us: dinner, dancing, drinks, silent auction, and dancing
The ’80s Are Back
Saturday, June 1st, 6-10 pm
The Brockey Center at South Seattle College
6000 16th Avenue SW
Direct link for buying tickets is here!
The photos and report are from proud parents Corey Dickinson and Anne Dickinson:
Lifetime West Seattle resident and West Seattle High School junior Keaton Dickinson just won first place in the Youth Against Gun Violence Essay Contest on the date of the 20th anniversary of the Columbine High School Shooting. The essay contest was sponsored by Washington Ceasefire, an organization dedicated to reducing gun violence.
Keaton arrived at City Hall this morning thinking she would listen to and support common-sense ideas on preventing gun violence in schools and society. She soon learned that she won first place in the essay contest and a $750 scholarship.
She then read her essay to a crowd of 200, which included Mayor Jenny Durkan, City Attorney Pete Holmes, State Attorney General Bob Ferguson, and Seattle City Councilmembers.
Keaton is passionate about preventing gun violence. She has volunteered for Washington Initiative 1639, gathering petitions for the measure to help get it on the 2018 ballot, and she also worked the phone banks to help the initiative get passed. She is President of the West Seattle High School Gun Violence Prevention Club. Earlier this year, Keaton organized a voter registration drive at West Seattle High School where she registered over 500 voters, most of whom will be first-time voters.
You can read Keaton’s essay here (PDF).
Wildcats junior Jackson Sullivan got the win on the mound, a 4-0 shutout. And that meant WSHS got the trophy – at least until next year’s game.
Tonight (Saturday) you can see the Wildcats play at T-Mobile Park, 6:30 pm vs. Ballard, free! The next game for the Seahawks, meantime, is Monday (April 22nd) at 4 pm at Southwest Athletic Complex vs. Bainbridge Island.
With so many big spring/summer events getting closer, it’s reminder season! So today, we’re reminding you that the West Seattle 5K is now exactly one month away – Sunday, May 19th. As our photo from last year shows, all ages are welcome in this morning run/walk along Alki, which benefits and is organized by the West Seattle High School PTSA (with community co-sponsors including WSB). Online registration is open – you can do it right here, right now.
The photo is from West Seattle High School teacher Joy Patman, who reports “a pretty cool visitor” to her Spanish 4 class this past Wednesday: Author Valeria Luiselli, who spoke hours later at Benaroya Hall downtown. She explains that the author “wrote a very timely book a year and a half ago called ‘Tell Me How It Ends,’ which documents in question form the immigration crisis as it relates to undocumented minors arriving at the Mexican-American border and being interviewed for asylum. We were able to purchase a set of these books last year. SP4 read it this quarter, worked together on projects over the last week and (Wednesday) had the experience of engaging the author in Spanish in a round table discussion.”
Lafayette Elementary is celebrating its centennial, and, as we reported in January, its Leopard Leaders are celebrating with a donation drive to help others – with your partnership. Here’s how it’s going; the update is from 5th grader Thea Harnish:
Here is an update on how the Lafayette community is progressing on their goal to collect 100 pairs of socks and shoes per grade level to donate to youth in need through Westside Baby and YouthCare. We have surpassed our goal for socks with a current collection of 792 pairs of socks. But we need more help with the shoes. We have 175 collected toward the goal of 600.
We have been fundraising through popcorn sales and gift wrapping as well as requesting donations from businesses in person to buy new shoes. Please see attached a photo of part of the collection. We have raised over $1000 to buy shoes.
With Earth Day around the corner, we are hoping to get the word out to sort through your shoes and see what doesn’t fit anymore and what you can donate. Even adult sizes can work for Youthcare, which supports kids 12 to 21 who live on the streets of Seattle. The deadline is fast approaching and shoes can be dropped off at Lafayette Elementary during school hours, Attn: Leopard Leaders.
Lafayette’s entrance is just north of the northwest corner of California and Lander.
(WSB photo, November 2016: TEALS founder Kevin Wang and U.S. Sen. Patty Murray at left, visiting CSIHS)
The TEALS program is still going strong at Chief Sealth International High School, whose principal Aida Fraser-Hammer sent this announcement:
Chief Sealth International High School is extremely excited to announce that we are entering our 4th year of partnership with the Technology Education And Literacy in Schools (TEALS) Program, which provides support to students who want to explore computer science in the classroom.
We are now planning for the 2019 – 2020 school year and as in years past, we are reaching out to the West Seattle community in search of software programmers or engineers willing to share their programming skills with our students. Volunteers are needed in the classroom as team-teachers 2 days per week for the next school year. No teaching experience is necessary; all training and additional supports will be provided by the TEALS program.
TEALS volunteers have enjoyed a successful partnership with Sealth by exposing students to challenging coursework which has been extremely successful in getting students hooked into computer programming and interested in pursuing higher education in the field of computer science. Volunteer training is provided during the summer and involvement in the classroom varies. Volunteers can team-teach or simply help out in the Computer Science classroom. They commit to two days per week during the 1st period of the day which allows them to maintain their regular work schedule.
Past volunteers have provided classroom support to students and have enjoyed helping teach CS in the classroom. Others have actually used the opportunity as a testing ground to explore a career in teaching. In fact, two-year Sealth volunteer Jon Fincher saw TEALS “as a chance to explore my interest in a more formal teaching role. It wasn’t long before I was fully stuck in. Within a few months, I knew teaching was going to be my post-tech career. I went back to school to get my CTE (Career Technical Education) credentials to follow my passion.” Although only a few TEALS volunteers explore teaching as a second career, all report, as Fincher does, “When I see a student ‘get it’, and see them take what they learned and do something I never thought of, I get as much satisfaction as they do.”
Interested CS professionals are encouraged to explore more at the volunteer section of the TEALS website (https://www.tealsk12.org/volunteers) or contact Chief Sealth teacher Luke Azinger (email@example.com or 206-252-8550) for more information.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
“So many great memories.”
After 10 years at West Seattle High School, that’s what boys-basketball head coach Keffrey Fazio will be leaving with.
He has just announced that after this school year is over, he will be taking a new position, coaching men’s basketball at Seattle Pacific University under head coach Grant Leep.
WSHS athletic director Corey Sorenson is not surprised. “I realized during my first year at West Seattle that Keff should be coaching at the college level.”
Fazio has been head coach of the Wildcats for six years, with a 92-64 record, after four years as an assistant coach. He’s a two-time Metro League Coach of the Year (2017 and 2018); 2017 was the year the WSHS boys finished 3rd place at state – their highest finish ever. The team also went to state this past season, and appeared in the district tournament six times during Fazio’s tenure.
“It has been a true honor to coach for the community that I grew up in,” Fazio told WSB. “I have had many family members attend WSHS and I hope we made you all and the community proud. Coaching in the Metro League was an amazing experience, and helped shape the man I am today. I enjoyed competing against all the great players and coaches our league has to offer. Our focus at WSHS during my time was a philosophy on preparation and belief. I think we accomplished that, but you don’t win many games without great players, and I have been fortunate to coach some really good ones.” He adds, “I will always cherish the players and the memories,” especially daily interactions at practice.
AD Sorenson says the search for Fazio’s successor will start immediately. And it’ll be a challenge: “Coach Keffrey has been the heart and soul of our basketball program and an irreplaceable leader within our school. This opportunity could not have gone to a more deserving person. It has been a blessing to have him lead our basketball program these past 6 years. Seattle Pacific University is getting a phenomenal coach. I look forward to following his career for years to come.”
And Coach Fazio’s parting words: “I would like to thank the West Seattle community for your support. So many people helped me get our program to where it is today. West Seattle is truly a unique place. I am forever grateful to you all. To the families, thank you for putting up with me. The players, thank you for believing in me, and my coaches, thank you for supporting me. Last, but certainly not least my family for encouraging me to pursue my dreams and supporting me, and my wife Janelle for being a constant source of support and love through the good and tough times. I would not have been able to give my all to WSHS without her being by my side.
“I would also like to thank the WSHS admin team and teachers for their support.”
He’ll start at SPU in July.
60 percent of our state’s college students, 40 percent of the funding. That’s one rallying point as educators and students fight for more funding of the state’s Community and Technical Colleges, including South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) on Puget Ridge, where an all-day awareness/advocacy event continues until about 3 pm at the Clock Tower Plaza. Participants have numerous options for sending messages to Olympia, where a bill to “Reinvest in Our Colleges” got stuck in committee:
Other messages are on display in signage reflecting SSC’s multicultural, multilingual student body:
Among the educators we found at the plaza, SSC president Dr. Rosie Rimando-Chareunsap:
You’ve heard a lot in recent years about K-12 education funding. You haven’t heard as much about postsecondary-education funding. In particular, community and technical college staffers say they’re “frustrated with legislative inaction” and planning a “week of action.” That will include a rally on the South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) campus, near the clock tower at midday Tuesday. That’s one of three “walkout” rallies planned on all three Seattle Colleges campuses by AFT Local 1789, in addition to events including informational picketing at other college campuses around the state. From the announcement:
“We have been advocating all session for a robust investment in the community and technical colleges. Everyone recognizes the value the CTCs bring to individual lives, employers, and the economy,” said Karen Strickland, president of AFT Washington. “What has yet to be taken seriously is the dire need to support the human infrastructure that makes our colleges hum – the people who process financial aid, teach in the classroom, clean the buildings, provide counseling and more – and to make sure students succeed. The economy is strong and the need is great – now is the time to [Re]Invest in Our Colleges!”
At the start of the session, AFT Washington introduced a funding bill, HB 1300, that called for $500 million in permanent funding in the CTCs. That bill did not make it out of committee, but the need for increased funding remains, and faculty and staff are tired of being passed over by the legislature.
The goal of the Week of Action is to send a clear message to legislators: CTC faculty and staff are frustrated with the decade-plus of inaction on investment in the CTCs, and want legislators, as they finalize the budget for the 2019-2021 biennium, to invest in the Community and Technical Colleges.
The SSC organizer says 34th District legislators are “on board” but could still use messages of support as they work to convince their colleagues. Info on how to reach your legislators – about this issue or anything else – is here.
Years in the making – and ready to share with the world! Student artists are hoping you’ll come see their work Tuesday night. From Chief Sealth International High School‘s International Baccalaureate program coordinator Allison Hays:
The community is invited to attend the 4th Annual Chief Sealth International High School IB Art show on April 16th, 6:30 – 8:00 pm, in the Library. Light refreshments will be provided. This public reception is for families, friends, and anyone interested to see, learn, and celebrate the IB Visual Arts Program. The senior artists will be presenting their portfolio of work which they have been building over the last two years. The junior artists will be presenting a sneak peek at their developing work.
CSIHS is at 2600 SW Thistle.
For more than a decade, students, teachers, and other staff at Denny International Middle School in West Seattle have spent part of some weeklong breaks … at school. Principal Jeff Clark sent photos and a brief acknowledgment of this year’s Spring Break Academy:
Seattle Public Schools was on Spring Break this week, and yet it was a great week of learning and fun at Denny International Middle School!
Congratulations to all of our amazing scholars who participated in our Spring Break Academy. They joined us for four mornings of learning complete with a field trip to the Family Fun Center Thursday afternoon to celebrate!
Thank you to our dedicated staff who helped to make it possible: Ms. Belka, Ms. Kaufman, Ms. Islam, Mr. Lai, Ms. Fondale, Mr. Johnson, Mr. Moor, Ms. Han, all of our City Year Corps Members, Mr. King, Mr. Rodriguez, Ms. Hamilton, Mr. Galvez, Mr. Anderson, Ms. Brown, Ms. Smith, Ms. Selina, Mr. Hall, Mr. Jefferson, Ms. Farah, Ms. Wilson, and our Custodial team! Go Dolphins!
Reminder – the last day for Seattle Public Schools isn’t until June 27th because of snow days.
The video above is from the Lieutenant Governor’s office, spotlighting a program in which a local student has just been chosen to participate. Here’s the announcement:
This week, Lieutenant Governor Cyrus Habib’s office selected Jennifer Aguilar Bamaca for the Washington World Fellows 2019 cohort.
This year’s winners were selected from nearly 200 nominees from throughout the state. To be considered for the program, students had to be nominated by a teacher or school counselor, and complete a rigorous application process that includes written essays, a personal interview, and a video submission. Nearly all of this year’s fellows will be the first in their families to attend college.
Jennifer, a student at Chief Sealth International High School, is both a student and a boxer, who enjoys learning about her Guatemalan heritage. She was selected for the program based on her enthusiasm for education, and desire to become a leader in her community. In her application she said she is excited for both the opportunity to study abroad, and the academic support to achieve her goal of being the first in her family to go to college.
The fellowship provides students with a study abroad experience in León, Spain during the summer between grades 10 and 11, followed by two years of college readiness and leadership development programming. The Washington World Fellows program was created by the office of Lt. Governor Habib in 2018, and is part of the office’s larger goal of expanding opportunities in higher education throughout Washington.
Jennifer is the only member of this year’s cohort from a Seattle school. The 2018 cohort also included a Sealth student, Luis Bravo Espinoza, spotlighted here in February for his time in Olympia as a State Senate Page.
As the M’s return home tonight, the West Seattle High School baseball team is looking ahead to its annual chance to play at what’s now T-Mobile Park – which is paired with their annual sale of tickets to an M’s game. Thanks to Sheree for the two-part announcement (and photo):
West Seattle HS vs Ballard HS
in the High School Baseball Classic at T-Mobile Park
6:30 pm, Saturday, April 20th, 2019
Get your tickets to the hottest team in the MLB – The Mariners!
The WSHS Baseball team is selling tickets to the Mariners game on July 2nd at 7:10 pm vs the St Louis Cardinals at T-Mobile Park.
100 level tickets – $40 each (down the first base line)
300 level tickets – $20 each (behind home plate)
To buy tickets, contact Sheree at WSHSMarinerstickets@gmail.com
From the WSB inbox:
Seattle Lutheran High School Seniors are hosting a Parents’ Night Out on Saturday, April 13th from 6:00 – 9:00 pm.
Who: For children ages 3-12 years old. This event includes a movie, fun games, light dinner (bagel bites, milk, and carrots)
Location: Seattle Lutheran High School Gymnasium, 4100 SW Genesee
Cost: $15 for 1st child and $10 for each additional child. No RSVP’s necessary.
This event is to help defray the cost of their graduation trip. For more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
(Hard to believe, but graduation season is just two months away! SLHS’s ceremony is June 6th.)
Several West Seattle churches share their campuses with schools. One asked us to share this news as they search for a new tenant:
Westside Unitarian Universalist Congregation in the Gatewood neighborhood is very sad to receive the news that our tenant of eight years, “Sweet Pea Preschool of the Arts,” will be closing their West Seattle campus in our building as of June 30, 2019. We have very much enjoyed sharing space with Sweet Pea and wish this group the best. Westside UU Church will have space available for a new non-profit organization to rent. If interested, please contact our administrator at email@example.com.
We have a message out to the school, which also has campuses in other Seattle neighborhoods, to ask about their future plans. WSUU is at 7141 California SW.
A colossal field trip for Denny International Middle School‘s Youth Ambassadors – the report and photos are from principal Jeff Clark:
The Youth Ambassadors had an amazing trip to the Washington State Legislature, State Supreme Court, and the Governor’s mansion.
We were blessed with the critical support of the Seattle Police Department who provided us with free transportation and four amazing officers to serve as chaperones, including the one and only Officer Vargas.
Ms. Lori Markowitz and the Alliance for Gun Responsibility arranged a packed day of meeting with elected officials who carved out time from their busy schedule to meet with us about specific pieces of legislation addressing gun-violence prevention.
Our scholars were amazing representatives and advocates for the Denny community. They were articulate, compassionate, and direct in their communication with the elected officials and staff. It was an unforgettable experience for all who were involved
We were able to meet:
First Lady Trudi Inslee [photo above]
Governor Inslee [top photo]
Representatives: Pollet, Valdez, Fitzgibbon [photo above]
Senators: Saldaña, Nguyen [photo above], Salomon
Office Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI): Marissa Rathbone and Jerry Price
Other highlights were:
Touring the Governor’s mansion
Observing civic action by WEA. Scholars learned about the McCleary decision from teachers across the state
Observing the budget voting process
One Denny scholar receiving Washingtonian of the Day for her direct and articulate introduction and rationale for our visit
Thank you to Mr. Chase, Ms. Markowitz, and Officer Vargas for making this great experience happen! Go, Dolphins!
Denny’s sent delegations to Olympia before – here’s a report from two years ago.
Three weeks from tonight, a local fundraiser promises to transport you thousands of miles away … without leaving West Seattle … all to educate children. Last September, we reported on A Child Becomes Preschool (WSB sponsor) launching its biggest service project yet, one that literally spans the globe – building a preschool in rural South Africa. It’s open, and now A Child Becomes is working on opening a second one. You can be part of it on Saturday, April 27th, by enjoying “an evening of adult beverages, tasty bites, music, and an Eastern Cape Market featuring student artwork.” It’s an adults (21+)-only evening at A Child Becomes (4320 SW Hill), with tickets available at ReachForSouthAfrica.org. The goal:
Help fund preschool in South Africa!
Our first school is up & running, and we’re fundraising now for our second school to open in January 2020. These newly built preschools in rural South Africa will work with our students at A Child Becomes in West Seattle creating an extremely personalized cross-cultural experience. Your donation is greatly appreciated and tax deductible.
Can’t make the event? Please consider supporting in the following ways:
– Donate goods and services for our silent auction
– Provide desserts for the event
– Make a cash donation: ReachForSouthAfrica.org
The preschool’s director, Michelle “Teacher Shelley” Neal, has a special interest in South Africa; that’s where her husband Ralph is from, and they travel there each year. The Eastern Cape area – inspiration for the April 27th event – is where they opened the first preschool a few months ago; you can read Shelley’s journal here (and see video of the preschool building’s arrival!). And if you can attend the April 27th party, there you’ll find out even more about what’s happening now as well as the plan to open the next preschool next year.
We want to share information regarding a situation that occurred yesterday, how it was handled, and to assure you that we are always doing everything we can to support our scholars.
Yesterday afternoon, one Sealth scholar made a concerning comment to another Sealth scholar about violence at school. It was reported to Sealth administrators, who took immediate steps to investigate and respond. The Sealth team followed the appropriate steps with both Seattle Public Schools Safety and Security and the Seattle Police Department. The comment was deemed to be “low-level” and not a credible threat. Student safety is always our top priority and in Seattle Public Schools, no threat is too small to immediately respond to. Sealth administrators did that and are continuing to coordinate with the family, with Denny Administrators, and with SPS Safety and Security in alignment with the district’s procedures and policies.
Additionally, social media has played a large role in partial information being widely shared amongst our scholars about this incident. Unfortunately, that has caused some unnecessary stress in some kids. In order to try to help with, we shared information at both schools this morning and communicated that everything has been responded to thoroughly and everything is safe at school.
We would also like to recognize and thank all of the many scholars and families who immediately sent the related social media post to administrators to make sure we were aware. Sharing information quickly can help to ensure students’ safety and also dispel any inaccurate or partial information.
Please be assured that the safety and security of our scholars will always be our top priority. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Though that letter didn’t elaborate on what was “shared …at both schools this morning,” the short note sent to Sealth staff at midmorning was also forwarded to us by a recipient:
There have been rumors on social media that there may be some violence here at Sealth today. We are aware of this and the Sealth administrative staff in collaboration with SPS Safety and Security office and Seattle Police Department followed all safety procedures to ensure that our campus (both Sealth’ and Denny’s) are safe.
Tomorrow is the last day before spring break for Seattle Public Schools including Sealth and Denny.
A letter has been sent to families of more than 1,200 students who received dental services from Neighborcare Health at 12 Seattle and Vashon schools, including six in West Seattle. They are recommended for hepatitis B and C and HIV testing because items used in dental procedures “might not have completed the final step in the sterilization process.” Here’s the letter sent to potentially affected students’ families, forwarded to us anonymously.
Neighborcare Health says the potentially affected schools where it provided school-based dental services include Chief Sealth International High School, Denny International Middle School, Highland Park Elementary, Madison Middle School, Roxhill Elementary, and West Seattle Elementary, as well as Chautauqua Elementary and McMurray Middle School on Vashon Island. That’s according to the statement we received when we followed up with Neighborcare. Here’s the rest of it:
Recently, Neighborcare Health discovered a deficiency in our dental sterilization procedures involving some of the dental handpieces used at our Seattle and Vashon school-based health clinics.
We want to first clearly express how sorry we are for this incident and any concern that it causes our patients and their families. We want to explain what happened, the possible risks, and what we are doing to ensure it cannot happen again.
We take very seriously our responsibility to provide our patients and communities with quality, accessible care. We are committed to keeping our patients informed about their health care and following up with them as needed.
The report and photo are from Raya Klein at West Seattle High School:
Earlier this month, Marlene Castillo-Rojas and Isabel Ortiz from West Seattle High School competed as a team in the FCCLA State Culinary Competition in Wenatchee! They competed against 11 other teams from around Washington and did an incredible job.
The competition included them having to make two identical three-course meals in a 60-minute time period. While they were competing, there were chefs walking around and evaluating them. Both of them were so poised under pressure and created a beautiful meal.
A day after their competition, we found out that they got first place. This has never happened at West Seattle High School and only once before in Seattle Public Schools.
A 1st-place medal at the state competition gives these students the opportunity to represent the state of Washington at the FCCLA National Culinary Competition at the end of June. We will be competing against all of the other 1st place FCCLA State Culinary teams at Nationals in Anaheim, CA. Your support will be able to provide these incredible students the opportunity of a lifetime. Donations will be going toward their airfare, registration/fees, hotel costs, and shipping our equipment to California. If you are at all able to donate, please click on the link: snap-raise.com/fundraisers/west-seattle-culinary-club-national-championship-drive-2019
Most months, the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce holds an “After-Hours” evening gathering, a chance for networking and for learning about a local business/institution. Tonight, Westside School (WSB sponsor) in Arbor Heights was the location – a beautiful night to mingle in its light-filled lobby. Both Westside and the Chamber have leaders in their first year of service:
In our photo are Westside’s head of school Steve de Beer and Chamber CEO Julia Jordan. Next Chamber event, the monthly lunch meeting on April 11th, which has a “speed networking” theme.