|| No School January 21 - Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday
There will be no school Monday, January 21 in observation of Martin Lurther King, Jr. Day. Classes resume Tuesday, January 22.
|| District salutes school board members
January is School Board Appreciation Month. At Tuesday night’s school board meeting, district staff and students presented cards, posters and gifts to school board members. Green Park students also created a fun video to add to the celebration. Superintendent Mick Miller said the school board plays a critical role in all aspects of the school district.
Walla Walla Public Schools Board of Directors: Max Carrera, Anne Golden, Dan Hess, Ruth Ladderud, and Cindy Meyer.
|| District teachers earn national teaching certification
Congratulations to Terry Carlsen, Kerri Tucker, Vivian Glaeser, Chris Neese Blackman, Peggy Payne (Walla Walla High School), Marci Knauft (Lincoln High School), Barbara Casey, Suzanne Rose (Prospect Point) and Anne Shelley (Green Park) for earning certification through the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBTPS).
Walla Walla Public Schools has 49 teachers nationally certified. There are more than 4000 statewide.
|| Berney and Green Park Elementary Principals announcement retirement plans
Berney Elementary Principal Donna Painter and Green Park Principal Mike Lambert recently announced they plan to retire at the end of the school year. Assistant Superintendent Laure Quaresma is leading the effort to hire new principals. Quaresma is meeting with stakeholders to get input. Job postings for these positions will be made public soon. Thanks to principals Painter and Lambert for outstanding service to Walla Walla Public Schools.
|| District to apply for energy efficiency grant
Tuesday night school board members approved Resolution 01-2013: Energy Grant. CFO Pat Johnston said the grant application will be for approximately $500,000 to replace outdated lights across the district, a new boiler at Berney Elementary and a new HVAC system at the district office. No district dollars are commited per the grant requirements. The grant application is due to OSPI by Feb. 15.
|| Personnel Report (from Jan. 15, 2013 school board meeting)
(Coaching) - Kate Keyes, Head Softball Coach, Walla Walla High School
(Administration) - Donna Painter, Principal, Berney Elementary, 8 years
(Certificated) Mary Matau, History/AVID, Walla Walla High School, 19.5 years
* Mary was on a leave of absence for the first half of the 2012-2013 school year
(Classified) James Briggs, Registrar, Walla Walla High School, 23 years
Yvonne Warner, Bus Assistant, Transportation Dept., 9 years
|| Lincoln High School Facility Improvement Committee study underway
Wednesday the Lincoln High School Facilities Improvement Committee met for the first time. This school board directed committee seeks to develop a long-range facilities improvement plan for Lincoln High School and recommendations for how to fund the project. School Board member Max Carrera and Lincoln High School teacher Lori Finn will serve as committee co-chairs. The group will meet the third Wednesday of each month at 3:30 p.m. at Lincoln High School. The goal is to develop a facilities improvement plan which aligns with the school’s mission and curriculum needs.
|| Graduates of Distinction nominations now accepted
The district encourages staff, parents and community members to nominate a special individual to be a Walla Walla Public Schools Graduate of Distinction. This program permanently recognizes the outstanding achievement of the many fine high school graduates of Walla Walla Public Schools.
Criteria for consideration:
- Graduated at least 10 years ago from Walla Walla Public Schools
- Demonstrates exceptional achievement in career or personal life
- Positive role model for current and future students
- Include one-page summary description and three (3) one-page letters of support
Summary description must include:
- Graduate name and current contact information (home address, email and telephone)
- Year of graduation (include school)
- Name and contact information of nominator
- Brief examples of educational and career accomplishments
- Brief examples of personal and civic achievement
- Brief listing of awards or honors received
- Conclusion statement summarizing why you believe this nominee should be honored
- Nomination packets are due March 15
- Send completed packets to:
Mark Higgins, Communications Director
364 S. Park St. Walla Walla, WA 99362
|| Wa-Hi Principal offers public tours of school to learn about bond proposal
Walla Walla High School Principal Pete Peterson is organizing public tours of Wa-Hi to educate the community on the school’s facility needs. Please help share this information with parents and community members. We need people to come on campus to learn more about its needs. There are many opportunities to participate. Below is the tour schedule. Ballots mail out to voters Jan. 25 and must be postmarked by Feb. 12.
Wa-Hi Bond Tours
- January 19 and 26
- 1 to 3 p.m.
- Wa-Hi Commons (tours begin)
- January 25 @ 9 to 10 a.m.
- Wa-Hi Main Office (tours begin)
Tours Prior to Wa-Hi Basketball games
- January 26 @ 5 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.
- Wa-Hi Main Gym Lobby (tours begin)
||Whitman College students become teachers of the Civil Rights era in innovative partnership program
Whitman College, in partnership with Walla Walla Public Schools and the Southern Poverty Law Center, is coordinating the Whitman Teaches the Movement initiative to enhance civil rights education for Walla Walla students in grades 2, 5, 7 and 11, to coincide with Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.
Whitman College students, working in pairs, will travel to all 10 WWPS schools Jan. 22 to February 1 to lead 45- minute lessons on civil rights education. The lessons are age-appropriate and based on curriculum developed by history teachers and organizations which specialize in teaching American history. More than 40 classes throughout the District are scheduled to enjoy these sessions during the two weeks.
The participating college students have volunteered their time and efforts, which included attending training sessions held in December given by Michelle Marsh Garcia, an education consultant and trainer for the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Student Lessons by Grade Level:
- Second Grade: Greensboro lunch counter sit-ins
- Fifth Grade: The friendship between Jackie Robinson and Pee Wee Reese
- Seventh Grade: Women in the civil rights movement
- Eleventh Grade: Dr. King’s Letter from Birmingham Jail
The Southern Poverty Law Center reports its research has discovered two-thirds of all states, including Washington, fail at teaching a milestone period in American history -- the civil rights movement.
Walla Walla Public Schools Superintendent Mick Miller says collaborating with Whitman College on this project allows the District to enhance learning opportunities and better utilize a valued and trusted community asset.
"We chose to participate in the Whitman Teaches the Movement project because we wanted our students to learn more about the civil rights movement, have strong role models in our classrooms, and to strengthen our ties to Whitman College," Miller said.
Noah Leavitt, Whitman assistant dean for student engagement, is managing the college's involvement in the program and says this, "We are delighted that Whitman students will again have the opportunity to engage with Walla Walla students around these critical topics in our nation’s story, and to think hard about issues of non-discrimination, justice and citizenship in a way that enables them to effectively participate in and become leaders in our community."
Walla Walla Public Schools Assistant Superintendent Dr. Linda Boggs says the project supports the district’s curriculum and provides a venue for Walla Walla students to interact with college role models.
"I am especially excited about the custom-designed grade-level lessons and materials," said Boggs. "Additionally, having college students as guest teachers provides an opportunity for our students to get a real life glimpse into 'college,' as many students, especially younger ones, may know college as a word but not have a clear picture of what it might look like."
|| Dr. Boggs to moderate What does it mean to teach civil rights in Walla Walla in 2013
- Tuesday, Jan. 22
- 7 p.m.
- Whitman College: Reid Center (Small ballroom)
- Open to public, free
- In this interdisciplinary discussion, Whitman College faculty explore the implications and possibilities of Whitman Teaches the Movement.
Featuring Whitman College Professors:
Erin Pahike, Lisa Uddin and Catherine Veninga
Moderated by: Dr. Linda Boggs, WWPS Assistant Superintendent
|| Superintendent’s Patron Tour program will take community members to Blue Ridge, Wa-Hi and Lincoln HS
Superintendent Mick Miller is continuing his Superintendent’s Patron Tour program Wednesday, January 23 from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Guests will visit Blue Ridge Elementary, Walla Walla and Lincoln High Schools as part of the program.
This is an excellent opportunity to learn more about the Wa-Hi bond proposal and see the needs first-hand. Patron Tour guests will meet with Superintendent Miller, tour schools and conclude with lunch and a debriefing. If you are interested in participating in a Patron Tour, contact Communications Director Mark Higgins: 509.526.6716 or by email: email@example.com.
|| Pioneer’s National Junior Honor Society joins Souper Bowl of Caring Food Drive
Souper Bowl of Caring is a national movement of young people working to fight hunger and poverty in their own communities around the time of the Super Bowl football game. In the weeks leading up to Super Bowl Sunday, young people take up collection (many use a soup pot), asking for one dollar or one item of food for people in need. They give 100% of their donation directly to the local hunger-relief charity of their choice.
NJHS will be collecting non-perishable food January 22 to Feb. 3 to donate to the Blue Mountain Action Council Food Bank to tackle hunger in our community.
You can drop off your contribution in the bin located in front of the Main Office at Pioneer Middle School. If you rather make a cash/check contribution, please do so at the Main Office. Your contributions are tax deductible. Please make checks payable to Pioneer Middle School.
|| New Wa-Hi Key Club advisors named
Walla Walla High School Science Teacher Rob Ahrens and Berney Elementary First Grade Teacher Stacy Morrison will serve as Co-Advisors for Key Club next year. Current Advisor Shelley Mann is retiring at the end of the year. She says she is excited about their addition to the program and that she will meet this spring for transition and training.
|| Fund set up to help Sharpstein teacher care for son with leukemia
This December, the 4-year-old son of Claudia Salazar, a 5
thgrade teacher at Sharpstein Elementary, was diagnosed with leukemia. He began chemotherapy immediately and is receiving weekly treatments. He is responding well to his medication and is being a good sport.
An account has been set up at Baker Boyer Bank for donations to assist with travel costs and medical expenses. You can make a deposit at any Baker Boyer branch payable to CLAUDIA SALAZAR DONATION ACCOUNT, or drop donations off at the Sharpstein office and staff will make a deposit.
Claudia Salazar is grateful for your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.
|| Area chef volunteers to develop new recipes for Sharpstein Elementary lunch program
Hannah MacDonald, owner and Chef at Brasserie Four and Sharpstein parent, is working with the nutrition services staff of Sharpstein to develop new recipes that utilize local fruits or vegetables. They created a chicken minestrone soup, which was the only entree served during Thursday’s lunch at Sharpstein.
During the process, Hannah is sharing culinary skills and also learning about producing large amounts of food in a short amount of time and on a budget. All cooks are considering what processes and equipment would make the work easier. Teachers will assist in evaluating the success of the meal by providing an after lunch survey in class. This partnership is part of the new Farm-to-School program headed by Beth Thiel.
|| Garrison Middle School receives Traffic Safety Award
Garrison Middle School received an Education Service award Thursday at the 13th annual "Celebrate the Stars" Awards and Recognition Luncheon. This luncheon is sponsored by the Walla Walla County Traffic Safety Task Force, directed by Nancy McClenney-Walters. Nancy said despite budget cuts and staff limitations, Garrison has been able to improve school zone safety, anti-drinking and driving programs and educational outreach to parents and students.
|| Walla Walla High School Debate Team earns team award at Tacoma tournament - By Coach Jean Tobin
This past weekend 24 Walla Walla High School students competed at the University of Puget Sound Debate Tournament in Tacoma, Washington. Most of the top teams in the State compete at this tournament, so, while I had hopes that some of our students would do well individually, I did not anticipate our team receiving a team award.
In Public Forum debate, a partner debate where the topic changes every month, 4 teams from Wa-Hi debated the resolution:
On balance, the Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission harms the election process.
Three of our teams "broke out" into elimination rounds. In Junior Division Gerrod Peck (sophomore) and Ben Parsons (sophomore) made it to quarter-finals. In Senior Division, Kera Parson and Julia Cosma (seniors) and Malcolm Gabbard and Emily Prull (sophomores) also made it to quarter-finals, ranking them as two of the top eight Public Forum teams in the State.
In Congressional Debate, Walla Walla High School sent more students into the final Junior Super Congress round (4) than any other high school in the State. I was very proud of our Congressional debaters who worked as a team to research both sides of more than 25 bills so that we could have speeches ready. Their hard work (as well as the hard work of Annie Capestany, a parent volunteer and assistant coach) paid off! Making it to Super Congress (their place in Supers is reflected next to their name) were Anna Apostolidis (3rd), Emma Gregoire (7th), Kate Kuhlmann (9th), Mary Adamski (10th). They are all sophomores. Anna Apostolidis was also awarded Top Presiding Officer. In Senior Division, Marisol Beck (senior) was Wa-Hi's only Congressional participant and she also advanced to Senior Super Congress.
In Individual Events Wa-Hi also had a strong performance:
In Senior Division Oratory, Marisol Beck placed 4th with a speech on secrets and "coming out", and Emma Gregoire placed 5th with a speech on hatred.
In Senior Division Expository, Anna Apostolidis placed 2nd in with a speech on the evolution of the English language. In Junior Division Expository, Ricky Entrop (sophomore) placed 6th with a speech on coffee.
In Junior Division Interpretive Reading Cora Cole placed 2nd with reading on death.
Kendall Dunovant (junior) ranked 16 out of 68 competitors in Senior Impromptu speaking.
Jordyn Englander (freshman) ranked 16 out of 52 competitors in Junior Impromptu speaking.
We were supported at this tournament by parents Carl and Katie Christianson, Vanessa Prull and Annie Capestany.
Our next tournament is a District tournament in Moses Lake on Saturday, January 19.
|| Lincoln High School play opens tonight at WWCC
Lincoln High School will present a short play "Bobby Wilson Can Eat His Own Face" by Don Zolidis Friday, January 18 and Saturday, January 19 at 7 p.m. at the China Pavilion at WWCC. This is the largest Lincoln High School cast with 18 students performing, and a set built by Lincoln students, according to Director Riki Wauchek. Come support Lincoln and the arts. Donations will be accepted.
Bobby Wilson has a tough life. His mom doesn't trust him, his little sister is pure evil, and his school life is a disaster. After getting in trouble at school (through no fault of his own) for both sexual harassment and terrorist threats, he decides to do the only thing he can: run away and join a circus freak show.
Directed by Riki Wauchek and AmeriCorps support staff Emma Swanson and Matthew Manley.
|| Parents and seniors encourage to attend Federal Student Aid planning sessions
Washington State University GEAR UP in cooperation with Walla Walla High School will host three evenings of one-on-one help filling out and filing of the FAFSA or Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Please join us in the Wa-Hi library January 22 or 29 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. for this free service.
|| Wa-Hi to host all-service JROTC Drill & Marksmanship meet
The Walla Walla High School JROTC "Blue Devil" cadet battalion will host hundreds of cadets from schools around the Pacific Northwest at the drill, marksmanship and physical fitness meet starting at 8 a.m., Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013.
JROTC programs representing the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines will participate. This event is free and the public is welcome. Competitors will go head-to-head in dress uniforms for drill and ceremony, inspection, sports training gear for physical fitness and in specialized gear for marksmanship.
Cadets in JROTC programs learn military history, precision drill and ceremonial marching, marksmanship and leadership skills. The Wa-Hi cadets invite the community to come out and observe this all-day event at the gymnasium.
SPECIAL BONUS: The Wa-Hi marksmanship program recently upgraded its range facilities to use a state-of-the-art electronic range and scoring system, similar to facilities used at the U.S. Olympic center and other competitive facilities at national-level events.
||New Wa-Hi softball head coach hired
Kate Keyes was named the new Head Softball Coach at Walla Walla High School. Keyes, a 2005 Wa-Hi graduate, served as an Assistant Softball Coach for Wa-Hi the past two years. The Blue Devils won the State 4A Softball Championship in 2011. Keyes was a twelve season athlete at Walla Walla High School. She competed in four seasons of volleyball, basketball and softball as a Blue Devil.
"I’m excited for the opportunity to continue to build upon the rich traditions of hard work and dedication which have contributed to the success of the softball program in Walla Walla, " Keys said. "It is a joy to work with such driven, motivated and goal-oriented young athletes as they strive to develop as players, students and outstanding individuals."
Keyes earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Western Washington University and is a bilingual Para-Educator for Walla Walla Public Schools. She also serves as an assistant coach for the Walla Walla High School volleyball program.
"I am excited to have someone with Kate’s experience and background," said District Athletic Director Don Wilkins. "She is very familiar with our program and our athletes and understands what it takes to have a successful program. She will be an excellent role model and will provide the leadership for the program as we move forward."
|| Dance Team Kids Camp Saturday, Jan. 26
The Walla Walla High School dance team would like to invite all students Kindergarten through 6th grade to attend their annual dance camp on Saturday January 26 from 3 to 5 p.m. All participants will get the opportunity to learn a dance routine choreographed by the dance team to perform at the Wa-Hi boy’s basketball game that evening vs. Kamiakin High School.
When: Saturday, January 26
Time: 3 to 5 p.m.
Registration: Begins at 2:30 p.m.
Where: Walla Walla High School Commons
Cost: $20 – This includes a dance camp T-shirt and free game admission pass for dancer. Cash and checks are both accepted at registration on the day of the camp. Please make checks payable to WWHS Dance Team.
Parents, you are invited to watch the youth camp dancers perform during halftime of the boy’s varsity basketball game that evening at 7:30 pm vs. Kamiakin. All Dancers get in FREE, parents at regular price.
|| Walla Walla Citizens for Schools plans walking rally to educate community on Wa-Hi bond
- Saturday, Jan. 26
- 10 a.m.
- District Office Parking Lot (364 S. Park St.)
- Open to the public
- Information: Craig Sievertsen (301.5205) or Shannon Bergevin (301.1449)
|| Activities planned for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
This Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Blue Mountain Action Council and AmeriCorps will be holding an educational fire safety event for the whole family. As recipients of the HOPE worldwide "Protecting Our Neighbors" grant, AmeriCorps has taken the opportunity to collaborate with Whitman College and the the Walla Walla Fire Department. They will help inform the community about how they can prevent house fires.
In the week preceding MLK Jr. Day, AmeriCorps and Whitman volunteers will be canvassing door to door in local neighborhoods to provide fire safety tips. Volunteers will also invite community members to attend the educational event at the Reid Campus Center (280 Boyer Ave) on January 21st. During the event, participants will get hands-on training to prepare for a number of fire-related situations.
The Fire Department will bring the "Exit Drills in the Home" (EDITH) House, which simulates a house fire and allows participants to practice safe exit strategies. It is a part of the Safety Always Matters (SAM) program that has been brought to many Walla Walla schools year after year. At the event, participants will also have the chance to make a donation to support the SAM program, which is in danger of discontinuation next year due to budget cuts. Event volunteers will then invite any fire safety participants to join them in Whitman's vigil ceremony.
|| Walla Walla Mentoring Coalition hosts program to share research on effective mentoring practices
The Walla Walla Mentoring Coalition is hosting a community event on Thursday, January 31, at Whitman College's Maxey Auditorium from 6:30-8 p.m. In support of National Mentoring Month, the Coalition is inviting all current mentors in the Walla Walla Valley, as well as anyone considering dedicating themselves to a new volunteer mentor role in the future. Mark Brown and Teri Barila of the Children's Resilience Initiative will share the latest research that applies to effective mentoring relationships. They will share how understanding Adverse Childhood Experiences, or ACE's, impacts the effectiveness of the mentoring experience. A casual reception will be at 6:30 p.m. with coffee, cookies and an opportunity to speak with local program representatives from the following local mentoring programs: Children's Home Society, FRIENDS, START, Trilogy, YoungLives, and Whitman MENTORS. The keynote address of the evening will run from 7 to 7:45 p.m. with Q & A from 7:45 to 8 p.m. This event is free and open to the public.
|| The Moms’ Network and Adventist Health partner for a Healthy Family Workshop Series
The Moms’ Network and Adventist Health are partnering to bring three parent workshops to the community to educate families on healthy choices.
Thursday January 24 is the first workshop "Keys to a Healthy Mid-Life" a discussion about women’s health with Dr. Stephanie Nainani OBGYN. The class begins at 10 a.m. at the YMCA in the upstairs boardroom. The event is free and has free child care. Dr. Nainani will discuss the challenges and opportunities women face in their middle years including changes in families, careers and physical changes. She will provide information that will assist and equip women to prepare for a smoother transition.
"Over the past year we have had positive community response with our workshops. Partnering with Adventist Health is a win win situation for both organizations. I am personally excited to have Dr. Nainani kick off our year with advice and knowledge for women. Part of the TMN mission is to strengthen families and by providing an opportunity for local women to learn to take care of themselves is the first step" says Beth Swanson, President of The Moms’ Network.
The second workshop is February 12 with Dr. Gily Ionescu, Internist on the discussion of healthy heart choices for yourself and your children. The third workshop is with certified diabetes educator Margaret Caicedo, ARNP on March 12. The discussion will provide ways to prevent and protect your family form type 2 diabetes. All workshops are at the YMCA and all are open to the community, free, with free child care.
For more information or an interview, please contact Beth Swanson at (509) 301-7471 or firstname.lastname@example.org.