Walla Walla Public Schools

Week in Review - October 14, 2005

No School Today - Fall Professional Day
October 14 is a non school day for students of Walla Walla Public Schools. Many staff members who are not contracted to work on this day will be involved in professional growth activities.

District United Way contribution up 12 percent
Congratulations to district staff for helping the district increase its 2005 United Way contribution 12 percent over last year’s giving. The total contribution this year was $25,870.
“This extremely generous gift will go a long way in supporting efforts to address critical local needs,” United Way Executive Director Liz McDevitt said in a thank you letter to the school district. “Thank you for demonstrating once again what a wonderful community partner the school district is in making Walla Walla a great place to live.”

Superintendent Coffee Hour - Friday, Oct. 21 at Wa-Hi Commons
Join Superintendent Rich Carter for his monthly Coffee Hour. This month Rich will meet in the Wa-Hi Commons, Friday, Oct. 21 from 8 to 9 a.m. This is an excellent opportunity to discuss school issues and talk about district goals and programs.

School Board meeting - Tuesday, Oct. 18
Work Session (“Electronic” School Board meetings and business operations) - 6 p.m.
Regular Meeting - 7:30 p.m.
364 South Park Street
Open to public

District raised thousands for Hurricane Relief efforts
- Elementary Schools: Walla Walla Elementary Schools donated $5587.16 to the American Red Cross to support disaster relief efforts.

- Pioneer Middle School: Pioneer Middle School recently completed a month-long “Coins for Katrina” drive. The coin drive culminated in an all school party with a Mardi Gras theme. All proceeds from the party and coin drive were donated to the American Red Cross. In all, $4000 was raised. The ASB would like to thank Swire Coca Cola for donations of pop and pizza, as well as all parents and staff that helped make the party a success.

- Garrision Middle School National Junior Honor Society: Garrison’s National Junior Honor Society has just kicked off its Hurricane Relief Coin Drive. Tying in with the Katrina Aid Relief Effort (KARE), Garrison has “adopted” a school in the Pascagoula School District to raise funds for to help them get their school back to normal. Garrison picked Gautier Middle School because its initials are also GMS. In the first three days Garrison students have raised $400. “Our goal is to raise a dollar for every mile between here and Pascagoula, a total of $2,537.00,” Garrison Library Media Specialist Jackie George said. “There will be a map on the bulletin board outside the library to show our progress.”

- Wa-Hi is still finalizing its hurricane relief projects and tallies.

Patron Survey - District seeks community input
Walla Walla Public Schools is conducting its Fall 2005 Patron Survey. Community members are encouraged to take a few moments to complete this survey and provide the district with valuable feedback. The survey is on the district web site homepage. Direct link: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.asp?u=94687971776

District seeks participants for next Patron Tour - Thursday, Oct. 20
Community members are encouraged to sign up for the district’s next Patron Tour featuring stops at Edison Elementary and Walla Walla High School. Participants also have an opportunity to meet with Superintendent Rich Carter and other district office administrators to learn more about the district’s five year Strategic Plan and future plan.

Next Patron Tour agenda (Thursday, October 20)
• District Office - 8:15 a.m.
(Welcome from Superintendent & overview of school operations)
• Tour Edison - 9:00 to 10:20 a.m. (visit classrooms, meet with students, discuss issues and needs)
• Tour Wa-Hi - 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (Campus tour, visit classroom, meet with students, discuss issues and have lunch)
To sign up for the October 20 Patron Tour, contact Communications Director Mark Higgins: 526-6716 or e-mail: mhiggins@wwps.org

Wa-Hi Varsity Football on KTEL 1490 AM (Wa-Hi vs. Wenatchee @ Borleske Stadium)
Tune to KTEL 1490 AM for tonight’s Big Nine varsity football match-up -- Wa-Hi vs. Wenatchee. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m. Go Big Blue!

Music Department coffee sale fundraiser
The Instrumental classes in the music department are offering an “Autumn Aromas” Dyer Straits coffee for sale, $10 a pound. Order forms are available in the Wa-Hi Music Department. Call Kay McCauley at 527-3039 for more information.

Wellness Program to help staff stay healthy - Annual Cholesterol Blood Draw
The district’s annual Cholesterol Blood Draw is Thursday, October 20, from 6:15 to 8:30 a.m. in the district Board Room. Participants must fast for at least 12 hours for best results. Only water is allowed - no coffee, tea, etc.

Special thanks to our friends at Davis-Sameh-Meeker Labs for offering the following services:
- Cholesterol (HDL, LDL, Triglycerides and Ratio) : $10.00
- Chem Panel (lists many blood components: glucose, uric arid, calcium, etc.) : $10.00
- PSA (Prostate Specific Antigen testing): $25.00
- Thyroid Function: $5.00

District schedules Facilities Community Forums next month to discuss 25-Year Facilities Improvement Plan
Thursday, November 17
Edison Elementary School (1315 E. Alder)
6:30 to 8:00 p.m.

Tuesday, November 29
Walla Walla High School Commons (800 Abbott Road)
6:30 to 8:00 p.m.

- Review district’s conceptual 25-Year Facilities Improvement Plan
- Discuss potential projects: Edison Elementary, Wa-Hi, Paine Campus, Support Services
- Offer feedback on district’s facilities needs; provide input on projects and strategies
- Q & A session with Architect John Evans and Superintendent Rich Carter

Visit the district website for school closures / changes to schedule information
As winter approaches, community members, parents, staff and students are encouraged to visit the district’s web site for up to the minute school closure information. The district will post information regarding school closures or delays due to poor weather conditions on the web site by 6:15 a.m. Also, tune to local and regional radio stations for school closure/delays updates. Messages will only be posted on the web site and released to the media if the district is going to alter the schedule.

Facilities Support Director explains district’s fertilizer and pesticide procedures - By Dan Johnson
Our district tries to take a conservative, but proactive stance in the use of commercial fertilizers and pesticides on our 100 acres of grounds. Fertilizer is applied twice a year, spring and fall. Pesticides (Herbicides) are applied on the same schedule to control weeds.
“Pesticide” -- the word is sometimes scary sounding and brings to mind gas masks and vermin. Washington State Department of Agriculture defines a pest as “Organisms that may be harmful to people, property, or the environment.” Examples of this include: certain insects, spiders, rodents, weeds, and even plant diseases.

The definition of a pesticide then is “any substance or mixture of substances intended to prevent, destroy, control, repel, or mitigate any pest.” Examples of this include:
Herbicide: pesticide used for weeds.
Insecticide: pesticide used for insects and spiders.
Rodenticide: Pesticide used for rodents such as rats and mice.

Each of these pesticides may only be applied by a licensed applicator, with strict guidelines on posting and notification. Walla Walla Public Schools has plans in place on how we will handle our Integrated Pest Management (IPM), which include keeping a list of pesticide sensitive children to contact when spraying is taking place, and a method of notifying principals, head custodians and building secretaries with an email and a posting notice to be placed at their primary points of entry and their main
office 48 hours prior to the spray application. The pre-notification requirements do not apply if the application is made to a school that is not occupied by students for at least two consecutive days after application, but quite often we post notification anyway.

Our licensed pesticide applicator is David Webber who is also our turf management specialist. David only deals with applying fertilizers and herbicides to our grounds on the outside of our buildings to control weeds. David can apply both fertilizer and herbicides from an ATV with tanks on the front and back.

We hire out any kind of actual “pest” management indoors and outdoors through a local commercial pest control specialist. No other school personnel are allowed to use pest management on their own. All applications are directed solely by the Facilities Support staff to make sure all of the notifications and postings are being implemented.

The pre-notification requirements also do not apply to any emergency applications for controlling and pests that pose an injury, health, or safety threat, such as an application to control stinging insects. However, we still try very hard to limit application until the children are not present. In the case of bees on the playground, usually the playground is closed until the spraying can take place.

Facilities Support wants to make every effort to comply with the law and to make our staff, parents and children comfortable with what is going on at their buildings. We currently have three school buildings with pesticide sensitive children attending, and every effort is made to notify the concerned parent by phone and not spray any herbicide while school is in session at those buildings so as not to interfere with any child’s education.

These requirements regarding school facilities applications do not apply to applications of antimicrobial pesticides intended for use as disinfectants, sanitizers, or to the placement of insect or rodent baits that are not accessible to children. If you have any questions on pest or weed management, please give Facilities Support a call, 527-3017.