West Seattle, Washington
This week, we’ve been announcing upcoming school tours/open houses – all online events – as we hear about them. Tonight, we have more:
PATHFINDER K-8: Three events are coming up –
Middle School Tour – Thursday, January 28 11:00 am-12:30 pm:
Click here to join
Or call in (audio only) 206-800-4125 (Phone Conference ID: 186 850 64)
K-5 Tour – Wednesday, Feb. 3rd 5:30-7:00 pm:
Click here to join
Or call in (audio only) – 206-800-4125 (Phone Conference ID: 988 639 515)
Middle School Tour – Thursday, Feb. 4 – 5:30-7:00 pm
Click here to join
Or call in (audio only) 206-800-4125 (Phone Conference ID: 906 152 910)
WESTSIDE SCHOOL (WSB sponsor): “Limited availability in some grades (PS-8th grade) and still accepting applications for the 2021.2022 school year. Via our virtual tour, you’ll learn about our unique program and get a peek at our spaces. In addition to your virtual tour, you’ll get an opportunity to speak with our Director of Admission, Ted Holmes.” Email him – email@example.com – or call 206-932-2511 to sign up for a tour. Coming up:
Preschool and Pre-Kindergarten – Thursday, February 4, 10:00 – 11:00 am
Kindergarten – Wednesday, February 3, 1:30 – 2:30 pm
LAFAYETTE ELEMENTARY: Two open houses are coming up:
Thursday, February 4 @ 5:30 pm
Click here to join
Or call in (audio only) 206-800-4125 (Phone Conference ID: 405 850 553)
Thursday, February 11th @ 5:30 pm
Click here to join
Or call in (audio only) 206-800-4125 (Phone Conference ID: 423 932 196#)
CHIEF SEALTH INTERNATIONAL HIGH SCHOOL: February 11th open house for prospective new students and their families; time/info will be on this page when set.
Any more to add? firstname.lastname@example.org – thank you!
If you need to get tested for COVID-19, a one-day community clinic is coming to Madison Middle School next Tuesday (February 2nd). Here’s the announcement:
Neighborcare Health and Seattle Public Schools Present: Community Covid-19 Testing
Covid-19 testing is available for all students, staff, family, and community members in this outdoor event. Everyone is eligible to receive a test regardless of insurance or immigration status. Testing is also FREE for everyone. We will bill your insurance if you have it, but will not charge a fee if you do not have insurance or your insurance does not cover testing. On-site interpretation services available through phone.
Date: Tuesday, February 2nd, 2021 from 12:00-4:00 pm
Location: Madison Middle School: 3429 45th Avenue SW
For questions, please contact: Neighborcare Community Access Team at 206-333-2524
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Seattle Public Schools – like most public entities – is facing a big budget shortfall.
Potentially, $48 million.
Cuts and changes won’t be finalized until summer, but one proposed cut would have a big effect on 15 schools, including two in West Seattle: A proposal to cut yellow-bus service for most “option schools,” including Pathfinder K-8 on Pigeon Point and Louisa Boren STEM K-8 in Delridge. Parents at both schools are organizing opposition.
First, here’s the slide shown at a School Board budget work session last week (see the full agenda packet here):
Thanks to Camille Morgan for the photos and report:
Asher Morgan, member of Troop 282 and Hope Preschool alum, worked with 14 fellow Scouts to construct a new playhouse for the Hope Lutheran Preschool this month for his Eagle Scout project. The 4×6 covered structure is a fun addition to the garden area that kids will enjoy for years to come.
Special thanks to Alki Lumber and Hope Lutheran School for their support of the project!
Hope Lutheran is at 42nd/Oregon in The Junction.
We’ve heard from more local schools with upcoming tours/open houses, as enrollment season continues:
DENNY INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE SCHOOL: Denny is having online open houses tomorrow (Wednesday, January 27th) at 5:30 pm and Thursday, February 4th, at 7 pm. You’ll find the links, and more information, on this Denny webpage.
LOUISA BOREN STEM K-8: Coming up – a middle-school tour 9 am Thursday (January 28th), elementary open house 6 pm Thursday, middle-school open house 6 pm February 4th. Both of the open houses include teachers. Find the viewing links for all three events on this page of the STEM K-8 PTA website.
ROXHILL ELEMENTARY: Principal Katherine Torres tells WSB that Roxhill is having kindergarten tours: “We are having virtual tours with staff available to share what students will be experiencing and learning about in the fall.” 5:30 pm February 4th; click here or call 206-800-4125 (Meeting ID: 652144902#). 3:30 pm February 10th, click here or call that same number (Meeting ID: 966067499#).
Hope Lutheran and Seattle Lutheran Schools are accepting applications for Fall 2021. Although we aren’t able to invite you into our facility, we are happy to give you a virtual tour of each campus and provide more information on our preschool, elementary , middle and high school programs. Please contact Admissions Director Sally Heit at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a tour.
We published Arbor Heights Elementary‘s announcement Monday. Any others with tours/open houses? Let us know – email@example.com – thank you!
It’s school-application season, and even though Seattle Public Schools aren’t yet having in-person classes, some are offering online tours to prospective families. First announcement we’ve received is from Arbor Heights Elementary. Elise Olson sent the invitation to tours they’re hosting on February 1st (next Monday) and February 10th. The RSVP links and other details are here. If your school in West Seattle is having a tour or info event, please let us know so we can add it to the calendar too!
West Seattle’s only parochial high school will be under new management starting this summer. Here’s the announcement sent tonight:
Hope Lutheran Church and School is pleased to announce that Hope has accepted an offer from Seattle Lutheran High School to manage the high school as of July 1, 2021, after the conclusion of the current school year.
Hope and Seattle Lutheran have had a close relationship and ministry partnership, beginning 45 years ago when Hope was one of the more than 30 Lutheran churches in the Seattle area that worked together to open SLHS. Over the many decades of Seattle Lutheran’s ministry and educating thousands of students, many Hope members have attended the school as students, served as teachers, staff, and as board members, and supported the school in many other ways.
Hope Lutheran has agreed to manage Seattle Lutheran High School for a period of one year, and is actively engaged in a process of determining the feasibility of assuming the ministry of Seattle Lutheran permanently. More information will be shared as this process continues. Hope considers it to be a privilege and honor to continue the work that began in 1976 at Seattle Lutheran High School, and looks forward to the future.
Thank you to the West Seattle community, and Hope and Seattle Lutheran communities, for your support as we embark on this new partnership together!
The two schools are located a little more than one block apart in The Junction – Hope Lutheran at 42nd/Oregon, SLHS at 41st/Genesee.
A month and a half after Seattle Public Schools Superintendent Denise Juneau announced she’ll leave when her contract’s up this June, the School Board has decided what’s next – an interim superintendent. According to the agenda for next Wednesday’s school-board meeting, the board will vote on whether to offer the interim job to Dr. Brent Jones, who was the district’s Chief Equity, Partnerships and Engagement Officer for three and a half years, until June 2019. Since then, he’s been an assistant general manager at Metro. Approval by the board would authorize negotiations with Dr. Jones to spend a year as interim superintendent without being a candidate for the permanent job. If you’re interested in commenting on this or any other item during Wednesday’s meeting, the agenda explains how to sign up starting Monday.
Students planning to play sports for Seattle Public Schools when they resume this year need to be ready, so this clinic is being offered next week in West Seattle. Here’s the announcement:
The Denny Wellness Center, located inside of Denny International Middle School, is hosting a Sports Physical Clinic.
WHEN: January 25th- 29th, 8:00 – 4:30 pm
WHERE: Denny Wellness Center located inside of Denny International Middle School [2601 SW Kenyon]
WHO: Any Seattle Public School student who is interested in playing sports and has not yet had a physical or whose physical has expired.
COST: We do not charge fees or copays, though we may bill your insurance. There is no cost to you. No student will be denied services due to inability to pay.
STEP 1: Register by scanning the QR code in the flyer with your phone or call our clinic to request a registration form via email.
STEP 2: Call 206-923-2809 to schedule your appointment!
Students may also be seen at their local school-based clinic. For more Neighborcare Health school-based locations, go here.
Here’s another tqsty way to help local students. Received from the Genesee Hill Elementary PTA:
January Dine Out for Genesee Hill – Mission Cantina
The Genesee Hill Elementary Restaurant of the Month is Mission Cantina! This is a two-day fundraising event taking place on January 24 and 25 (next Sunday and Monday)! Mission Cantina will generously donate 20% of ALL sales that the restaurant makes on those days. This includes all food, alcohol, gift cards, and Mission Cantina’s “Whole Enchilada” take-and-bake kit. To order regular menu items, please call Mission directly at 206-937-8220. The restaurant will begin to take phone orders starting at 11 am both days. Please note, we are trying to encourage families to work with the restaurant directly rather than use 3rd-party apps such as GrubHub and Ubereats to help the staff get more of the funds from tips and orders.
“The Whole Enchilada” Take-and-Bake Kit
This delicious kit gives you all of the items below for ONLY $60 plus tax (gratuity not included). We are taking orders in advance for this awesome deal until January 21. Please click on the Signup Genius so that you can reserve your dinners for pick-up on one of the two days, with payment at pickup.
· Chips and salsa
· Child-sized black bean and cheese enchiladas
· Potato, carnitas, chicken, green chili enchiladas
· Red rice and Black beans
· Cheese and three different enchilada sauces
In addition to takeout/pickup, Mission Cantina (a WSB sponsor) also has outdoor dining.
8:22 AM: Seattle Public Schools just announced this via Twitter: “Due to a citywide power outage, there won’t be live instruction today, Jan. 13. Please have your student work on independent assignments. Meal sites will remain open.”
11:11 AM: Here’s a district news release addressing what some commenters mentioned – that some educators had already started classes when the “no classes” announcement came out:
– Live remote instruction for Seattle Public Schools students is not occurring today due to storm-related power outages in Seattle.
The outages impacted about 30 percent of SPS staff and families, along with 13 SPS school buildings (where some SPS staff continue to work each day).
Based on the significant impact of the outages, it was determined that district-wide live remote instruction would not be conducted. Some educators had already begun live remote teaching prior to the district’s announcement this morning. Those educators can continue with their live remote teaching. Otherwise, families are asked to direct students to focus on independent assignments.
Meal distribution sites remain open, with the exception of the site at Beacon Hill Elementary School. Meals can be accessed at other SPS meal distribution sites.
ORIGINAL REPORT: You can support a local school and a local business while simplifying dinner prep – all by getting in on this month’s benefit pickups at Dream Dinners-West Seattle (WSB sponsor). Until we’re further along in recovery phases, Dream Dinners is basically in “take and bake” mode – so if you sign up for one of two special meal-pickup times this week or next, you get dinner for three nights, $50 total, with $10 of that being donated to Denny International Middle School. Limited spots, and they request 36 hours’ lead time, so please order ASAP for 6:30-7:30 pm pickup this Wednesday (January 13th) – here’s the link – or by January 19th for a 6:30-7:30 pm January 21st pickup – here’s the link. Dream Dinners is at 4701 41st SW (lower east side of Jefferson Square).
ADDED TUESDAY: One more pickup time’s been added – Wednesday, January 27th, 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm – order via this link.
Two notes today about related school projects – the West Seattle Elementary addition, and the Schmitz Park Elementary portables that will be required to house WSES students during construction:
WEST SEATTLE ELEMENTARY HEARING: At 10 am Wednesday (January 6th) online, the district opens an appeal hearing on the project’s State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA)-related checklist. (“Checklist” is the official term for this document, but it’s 228 pages long.- see it here.) The hearing is open to the public; this calendar listing includes information on attending by video or phone. The project is scheduled to start construction this summer and be complete in time for the start of the 2022-2023 school year.
SCHMITZ PARK ELEMENTARY PORTABLES COMMENT TIME: While the addition is built, WSE’s students are scheduled to spend the 2021-2022 school year at the former Schmitz Park Elementary campus. To facilitate that, the district plans to add 17 portables to the site, which held 20 before students were moved to the new Genesee Hill Elementary in 2016. 16 would be classrooms, while one would be restrooms. The two old portables left on the site would be demolished. After the year of housing WSE students, the district also plans for the site to be temporary home to Alki Elementary during its rebuild in 2023-2025. All this is detailed in the draft SEPA checklist for the project, on which the district is now accepting comments; you can see the 82-page document here. From the district website, here is how to comment, deadline January 11th:
Fred Podesta, Chief Operations Officer
Seattle Public Schools
PO Box 34165, MS 22-183
Seattle, WA 98124
When Seattle Public Schools leaders decided two weeks ago to resume in-person learning March 1st for PreK through 1st graders and some special-education students, they said a survey would go out to affected families in early January. This afternoon the district sent this announcement advising those families to watch their inboxes next Tuesday:
Seattle Public Schools will send an important survey next week to families with students in preschool, kindergarten, first grade and moderate to intensive special education service pathways in order to determine how many students from those groups will be returning to in-person learning in SPS schools in March 2021.
The survey, which will be sent to families on Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021, is the primary way for the district to ascertain how many families from the specific groups want to return to in-person learning.
The survey must be returned to SPS by Sunday, Jan. 10, 2021. It will then be followed by direct communication from each student’s school. The response goal is 100 percent participation in the survey.
SPS is currently in the remote learning framework that the SPS Board of Directors approved prior to the start of the 2020-2021 school year.
As previously announced by Superintendent Denise Juneau, SPS will resume in-person learning on March 1, 2021, for the following four groups of students:
• 1st Grade;
• Students enrolled in special education moderate to intensive service pathways. On Dec. 17, the school board approved the resolution to begin the phased in return of students.
The survey will be emailed, but families will also receive robocalls and texts. Among other things, survey responses will help SPS figure out:
• How many in-person teachers will be needed;
• How much classroom space will be needed;
• The appropriate amount of PPE for students and staff;
• Necessary bus and other modes of transportation needed for students;
• Necessary adjustments by SPS Nutrition Services to provide in-person meal service;
• How many remote teachers will be necessary for students choosing to remain remote for the rest of the school year.
The SPS website has more info on the in-person-learning plan.
Winter break continues this week for Seattle Public Schools, but a second food-distribution event is planned on Tuesday, with two West Seattle sites included. The food boxes that will be available have a week’s worth of breakfast and lunch items. Pickup times are 11:15 am-1:15 pm Tuesday (December 29th); locations are Denny International Middle School (2601 SW Kenyon) and Madison Middle School (3429 45th SW). Regular weekday meal availability resumes Monday, January 4th,
(Republished with permission from the Fauntleroy Community Association’s December 2020 newsletter Neighbors)
By Judy Pickens
When the Fauntleroy Children’s Center opened as the Fauntleroy Day Care Center in September 1978, Kim Seaman Sheridan wasn’t there to welcome the eight children as they entered a room at Fauntleroy Church.
But she was there the following year as a teacher, and she has been there every year since as the center’s director, welcoming nearly 5,000 infants and children over her 42 years of service.
Come January 1, Kim will begin the next chapter of her life – one not so abundantly populated with children.
She sees a change in directors as a plus for the center, enabling new leadership to run with new ideas. Also, she said, “After 42 years, it’s time to be home.”
It wasn’t exactly an enthusiastic vote when Seattle Public Schools board members decided tonight to approve a plan that is likely to send about a fifth of the district’s students back into classrooms by March 1st. Board members acknowledged a lot of trepidation among both families and staff. But they also acknowledged that the district should be planning on how to return more, if COVID-19 case levels should drop dramatically. Here’s how the district’s post-meeting announcement describes what’s been decided:
… The plan, first recommended to the board by Superintendent Denise Juneau and staff at a Dec. 5, 2020 board retreat, will initially resume in-person instruction for Preschool through 1st grade students and students enrolled in moderate to intensive special education service pathways (Focus, Moderate/Intensive, Social Emotional Learning, Distinct, Medically Fragile, Bridges, Preschool (Developmental/Seattle Pre-School Program), and continue serving individual students who have had an IEP Team determine in-person services for Resource and Access service pathways. …
Some highlights of Resolution No. 2020/21-4.1:
• Up to five days per week;
• Beginning on March 1, 2021 for PreK-1 and begin bringing back students enrolled in moderate to intensive service pathways before or on March 1;
• Remote learning will continue to be offered for PreK-1 and Special Education families who opt to not return to in-person instruction;
• Continue the remote learning model, until further notice, for all other students not listed above.
Preparation for bringing back additional students:
• SPS staff will begin configuring 75 elementary and K-8 schools to support a 1:15 teacher-student ratio;
• Expansion of Special Education services in secondary schools;
• Bargaining new working conditions with the Seattle Education Association;
• Hiring additional bus drivers and custodial staff;
• Resumption of in-person nutrition services as necessary.
SPS will be conducting, in early January, a survey of families to enroll students for the in-person model and determine how many will opt to continue with remote learning.
As we reported Wednesday, the board was supposed to vote last night but was “blindsided” – as West Seattle/South Park board rep Leslie Harris put it – by Gov. Inslee‘s announcement hours earlier of new recommendations for what COVID-19 levels were acceptable for returning students and staff to in-person education. So they took an extra day for staff and board to review what the governor said. Among other things, they noted, the governor’s new policy changes the acceptable level of cases but doesn’t change what kind of distancing and other safety precautions they need to take, and accommodating all students that way – including transportation – would be prohibitively expensive. Read more about the new plan, including some FAQ, on the district website.
The Seattle Public Schools board decided tonight to wait until a special meeting tomorrow to vote on its proposed reopening plan, so board members and staff could review what the governor announced this afternoon. Gov. Inslee said lessons learned elsewhere suggest students and staffers could return to in-person learning safely, sooner – all students, if cases are below 50 per 100,000 population, phased in (starting with the youngest students) if cases are between that point and 350 per 100,000.
(For reference, King County is currently at 420 cases per 100,000.) As the governor pointed out, while he has the authority to close schools, he does not have the authority to order them to reopen, so these are recommendations, not requirements. State Superintendent of Public Instruction Chris Reykdal, also participating in the briefing, urged districts and their labor organizations to sit down ASAP and start talking about reopening plans. Read more about today’s announcement here; see the briefing video here.
Back to Seattle Public Schools – what they’re considering, unless there’s a major change before tomorrow’s vote, is a plan to bring back preK through first graders, plus some special-education students, starting March 1st. The board was told at tonight’s meeting that the plan would affect about 11,000 students, roughly one-fifth of the current enrollment. The safety plan enabling that would cost $18 million, the board was told. Parents who don’t want to send their children back would have the option of staying with online learning; they would survey parents of potential returnees in January and February to find out their plans. Tomorrow’s meeting is at 4 pm; find the agenda here.
They’re back! West Seattle’s most famous handmade wreaths have returned in the heart of the holiday season. The announcement and photo are from the Pathfinder K-8 Wreath Team:
For the past fifteen years, Pathfinder PTSA has sold homemade holiday wreaths at the West Seattle Farmers’ Market. In recent years we have been in front of Key Bank with our smiling kids, and we know that some community members and parent alumni return each year to purchase one.
Due to the pandemic, we are not at the Farmers’ Market this season, but we are carrying on with the tradition and are wreaths in a socially-distanced way. Each wreath is 100% unique and made from foraged materials from our yards and tree lots. This year’s wreaths are some of our finest!
We’ve set up a Wreath Store online where you can choose your own beautiful wreath. Once purchased, we are asking folks to do a contactless pickup at one of our five mini-workshops in West Seattle.
We thank you for your support! All proceeds will benefit the students at Pathfinder K-8 school.
Adding to the trees/wreaths section in our West Seattle Holiday Guide! firstname.lastname@example.org if you have holiday info to add.
One of the achievements touted by Mayor Jenny Durkan in her not-running-again announcement back on Monday was expansion of the Seattle Promise program, which now offers two years of community college to any Seattle Public Schools graduating senior, and is still accepting applications for next year. The program has its roots at South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) on Puget Ridge, which Durkan has visited twice to celebrate the program – in 2017 on her second day in office, and in November 2018 after voters approved the Families, Education, Preschool, and Promise Levy to expand the program. It was originally known as the 13th Year Promise when it launched at SSC more than a decade ago. It offers two-year Seattle Colleges (three campuses including SSC) scholarships to students once they’ve exhausted other private and public funding possibilities, and it now not only covers graduates of all SPS high schools, but also all Seattle Colleges campuses. The city says 846 Seattle Promise students are now enrolled in the SC system – 699 first-year students and 147 second-year students. SSC tells WSB that 225 of them are studying here, 145 first-year students, 80 in their second year. If you are, or know, a Class of 2021 student who wants to join them – you can find out more here.
Spend local! Not only can you support local independent businesses that way, you can also support local students, families, and PTAs with your holiday-shopping dollars:
HOLIDAY EMPORIUM: The Alki Elementary PTA is offering online opportunities to support area businesses AND local students – plus drive-thru Santa photos:
Alki Elementary PTA is dedicated to partnering with local businesses during these unprecedented times, while offering community members the option to shop from the safety and comfort of their own homes, with no-contact pick-up and delivery available. Priority Mail Shipping available for the “Best of Seattle” curated gift pack. Order here. (That’s where you will see what’s offered – candy, coffee, candles, more.)
In addition to no-contact pick-up offered in West Seattle (Genesee & 54th), we are offering photos with Santa Claus! Santa will be taking holiday photos with families at the North Pole Express FRIDAY, DECEMBER 18th! (Kids/families in car windows, Santa outside.) Santa’s bright red mailbox will also be available for drive-thru letter dropoff for all. Please do not hesitate to reach out to email@example.com with any questions.
Our Holiday Shop is currently open and runs through December 13th! Shop at >alkipta.square.site.
Quantities are limited, so make sure to shop early while supporting locally!
Alki Elementary is also offering a way for individuals to sponsor local families in need this holiday season through purchasing a gift card with our Giving Garland at alkipta.square.site/giving-garland. Gift cards will be provided to families in need to help supply groceries, household items and toys.
VIRTUAL BOOK FAIR: Lafayette Elementary‘s PTA just launched this opportunity to buy books online. Through December 21st, you can shop here and support the PTA. As with all online shopping/shipping, the sooner you do it, the better the chance your order will arrive in time for holiday gift-giving.
Another high-profile departure announcement today – Seattle Public Schools will be looking for a new superintendent, again. After 2 1/2 years, Denise Juneau has just announced her plan to leave after her three-year contract is up next year:
It has been the greatest honor of my professional journey to serve Seattle Public Schools students, families, school leaders, educators, and staff.
While the past two and a half years have been extraordinary and deeply fulfilling, I am today announcing that I am leaving Seattle Public Schools. I will not seek a new contract and will not be serving the district beyond the conclusion of my current contract, which finishes at the end of June 2021.
Her statement continues with a mention of the pain caused by the pandemic – including losing her father to the virus recently. And she seems to acknowledge recent calls for her resignation, as well as a report that the new school board president was not certain the board would support renewing her contract:
And now, there has never been a more important time for unity and healing. For progress to continue in Seattle, the full-throated support of a united school board is essential. This school board must choose a superintendent with whom they can co-lead and move forward together.
The board approved Juneau’s hiring in April 2018. She succeeded Larry Nyland, who had been superintendent since 2014, following José Banda, who had the job for two years. Juneau had previously been state superintendent in Montana, before an unsuccessful run for Congress.
Thanks to Janel for the tip: Two more outdoor flu-shot clinics open to all Seattle Public Schools students are coming up this month, at Madison Middle School, 8:30 am-4:30 pm December 9th and 1-5 pm December 17th. Here’s the flyer with a QR code you can use:
You can also register by using this form or calling 206-933-7842.