||Winter Holiday break schedule
- No school: December 18 to January 2
- Classes resume Tuesday, January 3
- Have a safe and restful Winter Holiday break!
||School board meetings Tuesday, Dec. 13
5 p.m. – Special school board meeting
6:30 p.m. – Regularly scheduled school board meeting
Location: Anne Golden Boardroom (District Office – 364 S. Park St.)
Both meetings open to the public
||Superintendent Smith to join local leaders speaking on maintaining a strong community in uncertain times
Leaders of local law enforcement agencies, government organizations and schools will discuss agency responses during a period of transition and uncertainty in national politics. The forum, titled “Affirming Our Community,” is part of the Walla Walla Public Library’s Big Idea Talks series. It will be held at the Walla Walla Public Library at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 6. The public is invited to attend. A Spanish translator will be present.
Speakers will include Chief Scott Bieber of the Walla Walla Police Department, Superintendent Wade Smith of the Walla Walla School District, Walla Walla City Manager Nabiel Shawa, Walla Walla County Sheriff John Turner, and local immigration attorney Wendy Hernandez.
How does the recent political tenor influence local organizations and services? How will the decisions of U.S. political leaders impact everyday lives here? This forum will provide a unique opportunity to learn how community leaders will weigh these issues while continuing to serve citizens. The Walla Walla Public Library’s Big Idea Talks uncover questions and answers through discussions led by experts in such fields as art, sociology, literature, philosophy, history, government, and the natural sciences.
||Download new WWPS Mobile App (school closure information, jobs, calendar and more)
Walla Walla Public Schools introduces a new mobile app to better support smartphone and mobile device communications. Android users visit Google Play and iPhone users go to the Apple Store and type Walla Walla Public Schools in the search window. It’s free and easy to install.
Mobile App features
- School closure and emergency notifications
- News, events and calendar
- Jobs postings
- WWPS social media links
- Links to school sites
||Superintendent Smith shares important updates in the December Pulse video
Click on the link below to view the December 2016 Pulse Video. Superintendent Smith shares an update on the new school board leadership team, proposed vision, mission and beliefs statements, facilities planning and more during the five minute video update. This video is also posted on the district’s webpage.
||Parents share input on work of Bilingual Education Recommendation Committee
The Bilingual Education Recommendation Committee (BERC) met with parents in the Sharpstein Elementary Library Nov. 30 for a progress report update. The update included a review of the district’s bilingual programming and was an opportunity to gather parent input. The 5 to 6 p.m. presentation was in English and the 6:15 to 7:15 p.m. presentation was in Spanish. Those who were not able to attend may provide input in writing. Input forms are available in each school and on the district website from December 1 to 8. Another update and sharing session will be planned for January. More details will be coming out soon. Contact Teaching and Learning Executive Director Christy Krutulis (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Bilingual Coordinator Angie Pedroza (email@example.com) for more information or to share additional input.
Bilingual Education Recommendation Committee Meeting Summary and Input Form:
||Classified staff team with Food Bank to add holiday cheer
Public Schools Employees President John Kiefel reports district classified employees will volunteer at the B.M.A.C. Food Bank Saturday, Dec. 10 at 10 a.m. to help fill holiday food bags.
“These bags go to kids to make sure they have provisions that will keep them going while school is out,” Kiefel said.
||Dorn: State to Delay Submission of Federal Education Plan
At least 60 more days to be given for public to comment
OLYMPIA—NOVEMBER 29, 2016—After consultation with Superintendent-elect Chris Reykdal, Deputy Superintendent Gil Mendoza, Gov. Jay Inslee and various stakeholder groups, I am delaying the submission of the Every Student Succeeds Act Consolidated Plan to the U.S. Department of Education. We will provide at least an additional 60 days for the public to comment, bring new thoughts, engage or reengage in the process.
The passage of the ESSA was historic and a long time coming. The proposal we put together meets the requirements of the federal law, requires no changes to current statutes and establishes what our state will be held accountable for to the federal government. It does not limit our state, however, and we can choose to have additional accountability elements that we focus on here in Washington.
Superintendent-elect Reykdal and I are already working on a seamless transition, and the plan will ultimately be submitted by Reykdal. He will make determinations on the timeline and final content after additional consultation with the Governor’s office, legislators and key stakeholder groups. It is critical that our plan reflect the unique interests of Washington state, especially with so much uncertainty at the U.S. Department of Education as the White House transition unfolds.
Dorn, Inslee to Adopt Computer Science Standards
OLYMPIA—DECEMBER 1, 2016—State Superintendent Randy Dorn and Gov. Jay Inslee will announce formal adoption of Washington state’s first set of computer science standards at Tumwater High School, Thursday, Dec. 8, at 9:30 a.m. Dorn and Inslee will be joined by members of code.org and Washington STEM, which were partners in the writing of the standards. After a brief overview of the standards, participants will be given tours – lead by students – of robotics, 3-D printing and computer science principles classes. The event will end with the signing of the standards. The celebration occurs during Computer Science Education Week. Its purpose is to raise awareness of the need for computer science. A highlight of the week is Hour of Code, in which students from around the world begin to learn fundamentals of computer programming.
Harvest of the Month brings local Pink Lady Apples to school cafeterias
Students across the district were treated to locally grown Pink Lady apples as part of the Harvest of the Month program. Local farmer Ron Courson grew the delicious apples featured in the program. The Pink Lady was developed over 30 years ago in Western Australia. More than 2,500 varieties of apples are grown in the United States, but only the crabapple is native to North America. Apples contain no sodium or cholesterol and are a good source of fiber. It takes an estimated 35,000 to 45,000 pickers to harvest the apple crop in Washington state.
||Highly Capable Referral Period open through January 6, 2017
Walla Walla School District’s Highly Capable Program Services provide students of high academic and intellectual ability with designated time to explore concepts in greater depth. The goal of the Highly Capable Program is to encourage the development of higher level thinking skills.
Information on the Highly Capable Program referral period is currently available on the district’s website. Referral forms are available in all district schools and on the district website. Parents may contact their child’s teacher or school learning specialist/counselor for more information.
The referral deadline is January 6, 2017 to avoid assessment schedule conflicts that typically occur in late February and early March. All referred students will be screened using norm-referenced standardized tests and teacher/classroom assessments and recommendations. Those who qualify for further testing will participate in cognitive abilities testing at their home schools. In all cases, parents will be notified of the results of the process, and a child not selected one year may be referred again in subsequent years.
Walla Walla School District’s Highly Capable Program Services focus on two domains: 1) general intellectual growth and exploration and 2) specific academic content areas. The specific academic focus areas are Mathematics, Science, Language Arts and Social Studies.
Highly Capable students are currently offered the following services, although programming is currently under review and updated information for 2017-18 and beyond will be available in early June:
Students in kindergarten through second grade, identified as Highly Capable, are served through the Response to Intervention (RtI) model in their home schools. The elementary principal or designee will work with classroom teachers to provide appropriate accelerated/enhanced learning opportunities. K-2 classroom/program options could include, but not be limited to: alternative activities, enrichment activities, flexible group learning, independent projects, advanced lessons, online or supplemental instruction.
For grades three through five, Highly Capable students can be served by Explorers, a pull-out program focusing on enriched Science and Mathematics academic experiences. Students may also be served under the RtI model at their home schools. The middle school Highly Capable Services focus on the subject areas of English, Language Arts and Social Studies. Middle school services are incorporated into the school day through specific classes. Students are involved in inquiry- based lessons, group problem-solving settings, independent investigations and group discussions. Middle school Highly Capable students have an opportunity to take different levels of mathematics classes, based on their ability, test scores and recommendations from teachers. This same opportunity is extended to all students in grades six through eight at both middle schools.
Students previously identified as Highly Capable and transitioning to ninth grade will meet with high school counselors (or principal’s designee) for the purpose of course selection and access to advanced instruction. Teachers of high school Highly Capable students will know who has been identified and will be provided with professional development and/or instructional suggestions through the high school RtI team. Services for high school students can include, but are not limited to, honors or Advanced Placement classes, Running Start, independent study or online classes.
For more information, please contact the Walla Walla School District Teaching and Learning office: 526-6735.
Middle School parents learn more about Ready Math curriculum
This week, 53 parents and students met to talk about new math materials being piloted at both district middle schools. Publisher representatives of Ready Math reviewed ways in which the materials are designed to support student learning and presented suggestions for home support of the math instruction. Rather than relying on traditional math textbooks, Ready Math features an interactive, consumable text used to introduce new concepts during class time. Homework pages give examples of work learned in class and allow students to work through similar problems for concept mastery.
||Walla Walla and Prescott High School students receive Exchange Club of Walla Walla Youth of the Month awards
Congratulations to Walla Walla High School seniors Amelia Mott and John Cameron Peters and Prescott High School seniors Tiffany Robinson and Eduardo Perez for receiving Exchange Club of Walla Walla Youth of the Month Awards this month. These students will also be eligible to compete for the Exchange Club of Walla Walla Youth of the Year Award and a special $1,000 college scholarship. 2016-17 Youth of the Month Theme: “Inspiring Communities to become a Better Place.” Mark Higgins is the program coordinator.
Amelia Mott – Walla Walla High School senior
Amelia Mott is a senior at Walla Walla High School. She is looking forward to attending college in the fall where her goal is to attend a small liberal arts college where she can take advantage of the extended academic offerings. She has taken advanced placement classes in Science, History, English, Math, Government and Art and has taken college courses through the Whitman Enrichment Program.
Amelia’s extracurricular activities and involvements have included Wa-Hi drama productions, as cast member where she learned choreography and song lyrics, being a member of National Honor Society, and Wa-Hi Speech and Debate Team. Her talents also extend to music where she has been a member of the high school orchestra playing the viola. She has a passion for writing, painting, and reading. Lately she has dedicated much of her time to academics, writing speeches for debate tournaments, and teaching kids gymnastics at Skybound Tumbling.
John Cameron Peters – Walla Walla High School
Cameron Peters is a senior at Walla Walla High School, an honors and AP student with a 4.0 GPA, and a 12-season athlete. He loves writing and the English language, and is the editor-in-chief of Wa-Hi’s student newspaper, The Wa-Hi Journal. He spends his falls running cross country (and applying to colleges), his winters swimming, and his springs on the track. When he has time to spare, he’s also a road cycling enthusiast, along with his father, Scott.
Though he loves Walla Walla, after graduating, Cameron hopes to attend a private college somewhere in the Midwest or on the East Coast. The schools he’s applying to include Carleton College, the University of Chicago, Harvard, and Northwestern. He doesn’t know exactly what he wants to do in the future, but he’s currently planning on pursuing a double major in journalism and political science. In his free time, Cameron can probably be found doing homework, re-reading The Lord of the Rings for umpteenth time, or eating an inane amount of food.
Tiffany Robinson – Prescott High School
Prescott senior Tiffany Robinson is an AAUW Science Award recipient, member of the Honor Roll, and Academic Awards winner in science, language arts and social studies. She plans to attend Columbia Basin Community College this fall and become a registered nurse.
Eduardo Perez – Prescott High School
Prescott senior Eduardo Perez is active in cheerleading, an ASB Officer (President, Secretary, Sentinel), a Peer-mentor and Knowledge Bowl team member. Eduardo will graduate from high school in two years instead of four. He would like to attend Boston University to study arts and science.
||LEAP Ambassadors visit the University of Washington
Last month Walla Walla High School Intervention Specialist Melito Ramirez and Wa-Hi LEAP ambassadors Cynthia Montalvo (12th grade) and Pamela Lozano (11th grade) traveled to Seattle to be a part of the LEAP GALA Program on the University of Washington campus. The event is a required fundraiser for students to help organize and participate in. Funds raised support the one percent scholarship presented to eligible students at the February LEAP Conference in Tacoma.
“Our students helped prepare the settings, tables and name tags for the visitors who had reservations to attend the dinner and evening program,” Ramirez said. “Walla Walla’s LEAP ambassadors also spoke to the audience about how the program has had a positive impact on their lives.”
||Whitman College opens facility Saturday to promote fitness through the SQORD program
Area fourth grade students are invited to visit the multi-purpose gym in Sherwood Center at Whitman College Saturday morning for “play-time” in connection with the SQORD fitness program sponsored by Providence St. Mary Foundation. Earlier this fall all district fourth grade students received SQORD devices to help track fitness and activities. Students need completed liability forms to participate.
Saturday, Dec. 3 Sherwood Center Schedule:
- 8:45 a.m.:Berney, Edison, and Blue Ridge (play time from 9 to 10 a.m.)
- 10:15 a.m: Green Park, Prospect Point, Sharpstein (play time from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m.)
- 11:45 am: Rogers Elementary, Assumption, Athena-Weston
||SEA-TECH students make holiday shopping easy
SEA-TECH students have a variety of gift ideas available on the program’s Facebook page. Happy shopping!
SAVE THE DATE! Great Explorations March 11, 2017
Mark your calendars for March 11, 2017. That’s when AAUW’s Great Explorations, a day of science adventures for girls grades 5-8 is happening at Whitman College. Over two dozen hands on science adventures are scheduled for explorations into Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. Investigation choices range from dissections, 3D printers, rocket launches and chemistry. All workshops are led by women professionals, and support STEM educational principles. In February informational flyers will be mailed home, and information will be presented in classrooms.
||Kirkman House Holiday Events
214 North Colville Street, Walla Walla
- Bazaar Thursday and Friday, December 1 and 2 from noon until 8 p.m.
- Victorian Christmas Open House, Saturday, December 3, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Come and enjoy holiday music and refreshments and see the 8 foot map of 1884 Walla Walla
Live Winter Concerts
Cello and Harp performances
- Saturday, December 3 at 7:30 p.m. (Doors open at 6:45 p.m.)
- $40 ticket includes hors d’oeuvres and local wine
- Sunday, December 4 at 2 p.m.
- $25 ticket includes light snacks
Harp and Soprano performances
- Saturday, December 17 at 7:30 p.m. tickets are $25
- Limited seating. Call 529-4373 for information or to purchase tickets
||The Moms’ Network and Walla Walla Valley Honda sponsor the Holiday Reading Room
The Moms’ Network in partnership with Walla Walla Valley Honda is excited to once again sponsor the Holiday Reading Room at the Walla Walla Public Library. On Saturday, December 10 from 10 to 11:30 a.m. the children’s area of the library will be filled with holiday cheer and reading. Come enjoy treats, hot chocolate, holiday crafts and holiday stories.
The Holiday Reading Room is a free family event and every child will receive a free book.
The Moms’ Network of Walla Walla is a grassroots organization that provides an opportunity for parents to communicate, receive and exchange valuable community and parenting information, network with each other and be actively involved in the community. Since inception the Moms’ Network has advocated for families, provided support for early learning, supported volunteerism, and provided educational opportunities for parents. For more details please contact Beth Swanson at 509-301-7471 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
||City Parks & Recreation community update
Lifeguards wanted for summer - New Veteran’s Memorial Pool
Paid position - 15 years of age and up
To apply online go to http://www.wallawallawa.gov/images/depts/humanresources/PDF_FILLABLE_APPLICATION.pdf
Indoor Youth Soccer League Referee’s wanted - Games on Saturdays
15 years of age and up paid position
14 years of age and under volunteer position
Game locations are held in WWPS Gymnasiums
Soccer playing experience and basic knowledge of rules required, officiating experience recommended but not required
Referee Training will be held during the Holiday break
Indoor Soccer Registration - As space is available
Kindergarten - 8th Grade
$60 with late fee
Whitman Winter Tennis Camp - January 9- 13
4 years - 18 years
$30 - $75
For more information on these programs or to register, please go to: http://www.wwpr.us
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