Walla Walla Public Schools
Week in Review - October 2, 2015

In this Issue:

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District Stories

School Stories

Community Stories

District Stories
School board public work session and meeting Tuesday, Oct. 6

- Tuesday, Oct 6
- 5 p.m.: Public Work Session - Superintendent Search discussion and timeline (Dr. Dennis Ray)
- 6:30 p.m.: School board meeting
- District School Board Meeting Room (364 S. Park St.)
- Both meetings are open to the public


Powerful messages heard at Strategic Summit 2015

On Wednesday, 150 community members, including parents and business leaders, met at Reid Center on the campus of Whitman College to participate in Strategic Summit 2015. The event was organized as a platform for community engagement and input. Guests voted from a vast list of educational topics on what to discuss. Facility improvements and future bond issues, curriculum and college and career readiness received the most votes. Table captains, which included school board members, principals, Superintendent Dr. Bill Jordan and district staff, used a research-based protocol to guide the discussions which allowed for everyone to comment.

Class of 2012 graduate and current Whitman College senior Marcos Medina was the lunch keynote speaker. He talked about how support from his family and Walla Walla Public Schools helped him overcome barriers such as poverty and language. He is majoring in math and economics and hopes to own a business in the Seattle area in the future. District administrators and school board members are organizing the notes from today’s event. This information, including themes and lessons learned, will be available to the public later in October. The district is also planning a similar event for staff later this fall. Details of this event are currently being discussed.

“We are energized as a school district following today’s event,” said Superintendent Dr. Bill Jordan. “We have a community that cares about children and is passionate about ensuring they have a strong school system and quality education.”


Quality education focus of fall 2015 ThoughtExchange community engagement

Walla Walla Public Schools is conducting its second community engagement activity with ThoughtExchange this fall to learn more about views on quality education. The ThoughtExchange process is driven by the thoughts and opinions of the community to help shape the direction and priorities of the district over the next three years.

Parents, staff, students and community members will have an opportunity to “Join the Conversation” via this online learning process beginning Oct. 6 through Oct. 16. Parents, staff and those who sign up for Enews will receive an email inviting them to engage. Community members and students will have the opportunity to self-register by visiting the district website (www.wwps.org) and clicking on the ThoughtExchange logo. This process is available in English and Spanish.

Fall 2015 ThoughtExchange questions
Question 1: What are some examples of experiences your child or a child you know has had at Walla Walla Public Schools that illustrates what quality education means to you?

Question 2: What are some opportunities you feel would contribute to quality education that are not available for students right now?

ThoughtExchange Process:
- It is a three-step process. Stakeholders begin by sharing their thoughts online. Then each participant has the opportunity to review and star the thoughts of other ThoughtExchange contributors. The benefit of the process is discovering what the community values.
- The process is confidential. The names and email addresses of participants will never be publicly associated with a thought or response. However, participants will see each other’s thoughts.
- If the school district has your email address (parents, staff, Enews recipients), you will receive a customized invitation. If you don’t receive an invitation, you can visit the Walla Walla Public Schools home page at www.wwps.org to self-register.
- Results of the process will be shared with the public in late November.


District plans free Tutoring Provider Fair

Walla Walla Public Schools is hosting a Free Tutoring Provider Fair on October 6. This event is for families with students attending Blue Ridge Elementary, Edison Elementary, Garrison Middle School and Lincoln High School. If your child attends one of these schools and qualifies for Free/Reduced lunch, you may visit with tutoring providers from the area and sign up for free tutoring services for the 2015-16 school year.

The event will be held at Garrison Middle School, 906 Chase Street, from 4 to 7 p.m. The free tutoring is part of the Supplemental Education Services program required by federal law and funded by Title I.
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For more information, please contact Linda Leighty at (509) 526-6723 or Sergio Hernandez at (509) 526-6748.


Providence and Penitentiary employees donate school supplies

The district recently received generous school supplies donations from employees of Providence St. Mary Medical Center and the Washington State Penitentiary. Several thousand dollars in supplies were received. The district sent the school supplies out to schools for distribution to students in need. Thanks so much to these thoughtful employee groups for this much needed donation. 


New Pulse video posted to district webpage

Visit the Walla Walla Public Schools webpage at www.wwps.org to watch the October edition of the Pulse video series featuring Superintendent Dr. Bill Jordan. This brief monthly video series is an opportunity for viewers to hear directly from Superintendent Jordan about issues impacting Walla Walla Public Schools.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u_vznLFw2rY


Mr. Whitman proceeds support AVID program

Proceeds from this year’s Mr. Whitman competition will be donated to Walla Walla Public Schools to support the AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) program. AVID’s mission is to close the achievement gap by preparing all students for college readiness and success in a global society.

This year there are eight contestants in the competition. The Mr. Whitman Talent Show is Friday, Oct. 30 at 7 p.m. at Cordiner Hall. Throughout the month of October contestants will be participating in a variety of fundraisers in support of AVID.

Contestant Henry Lanman (lanmanhr@whitman.edu) is organizing a raffle for a variety of gift baskets. Tickets are $1 each. Tickets are on sale today in the Reid Campus Center from 12-2 p.m. and 4 to 6 p.m. He also plans to be at the Land Title Plaza today from 4 to 6 p.m. and at the Farmer’s Market Saturday, Oct. 3 from 9 to 1 p.m. There will be more information on ways to support these fundraisers available in the days and weeks to come.


District joins area Realtors for “Care and Share” Food Drive

- Food Drive Weekend Dates: Oct. 16-18
- Collection barrels at all district schools and the district office throughout the month of October

Walla Walla Public Schools is teaming with area realtors to help those in need through the “Care and Share” annual food drive. There are many ways for parents, students and staff to get involved. All donations help the Blue Mountain Action Council Food Bank. Demand remains high. Peter Swant is the project coordinator: peterswant@windermere.com

Here’s how you can help:
- “Fill the Bus” drive at area grocery stores: Saturday, Oct. 17 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
- Pick a section of town to distribute bags to area homes and then collect them the following day (Oct. 16 & 18)
- Donate food at all district schools and the district office (collection barrels at all sites the month of October)


NO SCHOOL Oct. 8 and 9 (Parent/Teacher Conferences)
There will be no school Oct. 8 and 9 (Parent/Teacher Conferences). 
Parent/teacher goal-setting fall conference schedule

Berney Elementary
Wednesday, Oct. 7: 3:30 – 8:00 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 8: 8:00 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.

Blue Ridge Elementary
Monday, Oct. 5: 3:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Wednesday, Oct. 7: 3:00- 7:00 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 8: 8:00 a.m. - 3:15 p.m.

Edison Elementary
Wednesday, Oct. 7: 3:15 - 6:45 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 8: 8:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Green Park Elementary
Tuesday, Oct. 6: 3:15 – 7:00 p.m.
Wednesday, Oct. 7: 2:15– 7:00 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 8: 8:00 a.m. – 3:15 p.m.

Prospect Point Elementary
Tuesday, Oct. 6: 3:30 – 7:15 p.m.
Wednesday, Oct. 7: 3:30 - 7:15 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 8: 8:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Sharpstein Elementary
Tuesday, Oct. 6: 3:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Wednesday, Oct. 7: 3:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 8: 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Garrison Middle School
Tuesday, Oct. 6 (Arena): 3:30 – 7:00 p.m.
Wednesday, Oct. 7 (Drop In): 3:30 – 7:00 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 8 (Drop In): 7:45 a.m. – 3:15 p.m.

Pioneer Middle School
Tuesday, Oct. 6 (Drop In): 4:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Wednesday, Oct. 7 (Drop In): 4:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 8 (Scheduled): 8:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Lincoln High School
Monday, Oct. 5 (Appt.): 3:30 – 7:00 p.m.
Wednesday, Oct. 7 (Appt.): 3:30 – 7:00 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 8 (Appt.): 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Walla Walla High School
Wednesday, Oct. 7 (Drop In-Arena): 4:00 – 8:00 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 8 (Classrooms): 7:30 a.m. – Noon
Thursday, Oct. 8 (Phone, e-mail progress reports): 12:45 – 6:15 p.m.

SEA-TECH (Southeast Washington Area Skills Center)
Wednesday, Oct. 7: 3:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 8: 7:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.; 3:30 - 6:30 p.m.


”Pitch It” instructional workshop Wednesday (Shark Tank - Walla Walla style) 

Pitch It! Competition presented by Baker Boyer Bank: Inspired by the TV show, Shark Tank, “Pitch It” provides an opportunity for students of all ages to design and develop innovative business, products and services concepts. The Pitch It! Competition will challenge students to create a realistic business model for their entrepreneurial idea.

Students will compete in grade brackets, K-8, 9-12 and 13+ and is open to all students at all schools in the Walla Walla Valley. In addition, there will be workshops leading up to the events, volunteer mentors will be assigned to students and a community-wide entrepreneurial panel will judge the final event.

The preliminary competition for all students is Wednesday, November 4 from 5:30-8 p.m. at Walla Walla Community College. The winners from each grade bracket at this event will move forward to compete in the final event on November 18 at the Gesa Power House Theatre. The first place winner will receive a $500 cash prize from Baker Boyer Bank and three coaching sessions on the fundamentals of building a successful business.

Pitch It! Schedule of Events:

Wednesday, Oct. 7 - 6:30-8 p.m.
- Instructional Workshop “Brainstorm your Business” Location: Port of Walla Walla Conference Room, Walla Walla Airport. Activities involve games to creatively consider new business or social enterprise opportunities and product concepts.

- Wednesday, Oct. 21 6:30-8 p.m.
- Instructional Workshop “Build your Pitch” Location: Reid Center, Room G-02, Whitman College. Instructional and practice activities to focus on crucial points of the pitch.

Wednesday, Nov. 4 - 5:30-8 p.m.
- Preliminary Competition Location: Walla Walla Community College, Main Building. Three community-wide events by grade-bracket, top 2 winners from each age bracket advance to final round.

Wednesday, Nov. 18 - 5:30-7:30 p.m.
- Final Event Location: Gesa Power House Theatre. Top 2 finishers at each preliminary event compete for the final award.

To learn more visit:
www.pitch-it.info / www.gew.co/ / http://startup.choosewashingtonstate.com/


School Stories
Wa-Hi student wins scholarship for excelling in business challenge

After attending a summer camp at Washington Business Week in July, Walla Walla High School sophomore Lauren Bergman won the PEMCO Scholarship worth $3,600. PEMCO Insurance Awards the scholarship to an exemplary WBW participant; students are nominated by their Company Advisor at the end of the week-long experience.

“Thank you Washington Business Week for the completely life changing experience!,” said Bergman.

Students are placed in a dynamic simulation where they compete as industry professionals, sharpen their communication skills, launch a company and solve real-world challenges. Lauren was CEO of her company and garnered the prestigious PEMCO scholarship at the awards ceremony.

AS CEO of her team, Lauren raced against the clock to develop a business idea and pitched it to potential investors at the end-of-week competition. Guided by a mentor from the professional sector, students learn to work as a team, explore careers, take a test run of university life and build a network with professionals and future leaders. Students also earn college credit upon completion of the camp.

WSU GEARUP at Walla Walla High School sponsored 23 full ride scholarships to students from Walla Walla High School to attend Washington Business Week camps at Gonzaga University and Central Washington University.


Dig Pink Match Oct. 13

The Walla Walla High School Volleyball Program continues to offer activities and events to raise awareness of Breast Cancer through its Dig Pink campaign. Several fundraisers are also planned. Funds raised will be donated to the Providence St Mary Breast Cancer Special Needs or the Lifesaver Fund. For more information, contact organizer Cassie Rothstrom: (509) 520-7186 / cassie@wwenvironmental.com.

Dig Pink remaining events:
- October 5: Garrison vs. Pioneer, Dig Pink Volleyball Match
- October 13: Dig Pink Game at Wa-Hi

October 13: Dig Pink Game Schedule of Events
- Pizza By the Slice – will be sold during Frosh, Sophomore, JV, and Varsity Games - $2/slice
- Wa-Hi Cheerleaders will be onsite doing face painting - $1
- There will be “mystery items” to bid on at the event
- Onsite raffle for cool themed baskets
- 30 second black out during the Varsity Game break to remember those impacted by cancer. Bracelets will be turned on during this time to light up the gym with a Moment of Silence following.
- “Serve for a Cure” - $1/serve (tickets purchased at game)


Community Stories
Dia de los Muertos returns to Gesa Power House Theatre

Gesa Credit Union and Shakespeare Walla Walla present the third annual Dia de los Muertos Festival at the Gesa Power House Theatre on October 24 and 25.

The Dia de los Muertos Festival is a collaboration between many local businesses and community partners, and is inspired by the "Day of the Dead" holiday where people in Mexico and throughout Latin America gather to celebrate the lives of departed friends and family.

The Dia de los Muertos Festival begins on Saturday, October 24, at 5 p.m. with a procession through downtown ending at the Gesa Power House Theatre for an evening program of music and dance performances. The festival continues in and around the theater on Sunday, October 25, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission to the festival and all activities are free and open to the public. Food vendors will set up nearby. The street in front of Gesa Power House Theatre will be closed during festival hours (6th Avenue from Rose to Sumach).

The popular "Steamroller Print Project" led by Whitman College Art Professor Nicole Pietrantoni, returns on Sunday of the festival. Reliefs are carved into wooden blocks depicting iconic Dia de los Muertos images (skulls, skeletons, harvest, and nature), and a City of Walla Walla construction steamroller is used as a printing press to create giant prints which will be on display at the festival and for sale afterwards.

Sunday will also include scheduled performances of a Shakespearean-themed "Pageant of the Dead" performed by local student groups, music and dance performances, and a variety of free, family-friendly activities, from art projects, to face-painting, to a photo booth. Community groups are invited to create Dia de los Muertos altars for display during the festival.

Shakespeare Walla Walla produced Dia de los Muertos lesson plans and classroom activity ideas to engage local schools and teachers in advance of the festival. A small number of teaching artists will lead classroom art and education projects in the weeks leading up to the festival.

For the second year in a row, Gesa Credit Union stepped forward as the title sponsor for the festival, and the festival is also supported through grants from the Blue Mountain Community Foundation, Washington State Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional sponsorship opportunities are available by contacting Shakespeare Walla Walla. The festival grows each year, and is expected to attract up to 3,000 attendees in 2015. In addition, on Friday, October 23, Gesa Power House Theatre will present "Deep Love: A Ghostly Rock Opera" a musical about love's reach from beyond the grave. Tickets are available at www.phtww.com.

For more information visit www.shakespearewallawalla.org.


City Parks & Rec Update

Registration is open for the following programs:
Winter Tennis Camp - January 11-15, 2016
- Beginning - Advanced (Ages 10-18) Cost - $75
- Quickstart (Ages 4-10) Cost - $55

For more information on these programs or to register, please go to www.wwpr.us. Like on Facebook! www.facebook.com/wallawallapr


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