Walla Walla Public Schools
Week in Review - May 7, 2010

In this Issue:

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District proclaims May as Partners in Learning Month
Tuesday night the school board signed and read a proclamation stating May is Partners in Learning Month. Thank you letters and copies of the proclamation were sent to more than 100 district partners this week.

School Board President Cindy Meyer is also submitting a letter to the editor this week to raise awareness. The district will also host a Recognition Event Tuesday, May 18 at 6 p.m. the district office board room to honor the some of the district’s partners Each year the district will officially recognize more of its partners.

The district is also building a web page to thank the district’s Partners in Learning. This month school staff are also encouraged to write letters to the editor, post messages on school web pages or send thank you cards to those who are making a difference in your school, department or classroom. Thanks to all the district’s Partners in Learning for helping make our school district one of the best in the state.

Students and staff shine in Sharpstein Cinco de Mayo celebration
Wednesday Sharpstein Elementary teachers Lori Parnicky, Jason Parsons and Donna Hernandez organized an all school Cinco de Mayo assembly celebrating cultures through dance and song. Students put on an amazing performance. Principal Laure Quaresma thanked the students and staff for all of their effort and time spent practicing the dances, songs and making costumes for the production.
Personnel Report (from 5/4/10 school board meeting)
(Certificated) Matt Hamlin, Math Teacher, Wa-Hi

(Classified) Charity Yaw, Food Services Assistant, Prospect Pt.

(Certificated) Peder Fretheim, Math Teacher, Wa-Hi, 5 years
* Peder is resigning .2 FTE - he will continue as a .8 FTE math teacher

(Classified) Jesus Lomeli, Para-Educator, Pioneer, 6 years

Staff Transfers:
Janis Barton will transfer to Pioneer Middle School for 2010-11 as a Library Media Specialist.

Sarah Stone will transfer from the Wa-Hi Copy Center to Secretary to the Director of Facilities and Operations effective July 1.

District supports pursuit of federal funds
Tuesday night school board members approved a request from Assistant Superintendent Dr. Linda Boggs to sign a Partnership Agreement in support of Washington state’s application to receive Race to the Top (RTTT) federally funded grants.

Boggs reported Governor Christine Gregoire, State Superintendent Randy Dorn and State Board of Education Chairman Jeff Vincent are asking districts and teacher’s unions to join them in support of the application

Boggs said the state has a better chance of receiving funds for the second round of Race to the Top (RTTT) Grants. She said legislation passed during the recent session identified some key areas that will strengthen our state’s application: improved instruction; updated evaluation standards for principals and teachers; and opportunities to improve low performing schools.

Boggs said if the state successfully receives these additional federal funds, approximately $260,000 annually could trickle down to Walla Walla over a four year span. She said the signing of the Partnership Agreement is just the first step and the district will still need to submit a district-wide implementation plan if and when the RTTT grant is awarded to Washington state.

Spring sports update - By Athletic Director Don Wilkins
Our Blue Devil spring sports athletes, teams and coaches are having a phenomenal season. Baseball, Soccer, Softball, Track and Boys Golf have finished their regular season schedules and are preparing to begin post-season play. Girls and Boys Tennis and Girls Golf will complete their seasons next week. The following is a brief summary for each of the teams that have completed their regular season.

Softball - Softball is currently undefeated (19-0) and has again won the Cascade Division Championship. They are currently ranked #1 in the State 4A rankings and are ranked nationally. They will host Pasco on Thursday May 13th in a 5:00 PM District game at Murr Sports Complex. Admission is $4 for seniors and students with ASB and $6 for adults. On Saturday May 15th they will travel to Wenatchee for the District Championships. Their first game will start at noon.

Soccer - Our Boys Soccer team finished the season with a 12-2 league record winning the first ever Big Nine Soccer Championship for Blue Devil Soccer. They will host #2 Davis on Saturday May 8th at 1:00 PM at the Whitman College soccer complex (located next to DeSales HS). Winning that game will give us the #1 seed into the Regional Tournament starting on Saturday, May 15th and we will host a first round game game. If we are defeated by Davis, we will play on Tuesday May 11th at the Whitman soccer complex. That game will be for the 2nd and 3rd seeds to the Regional Tournament and the opportunity to host a first round Regional game.

Track - On Wednesday night at Pasco, our Boys Track team defeated Eastmont and Pasco to complete the season with a 13-1 record and captured our 5th consecutive Big Nine Track Championship. The girls also had a great season finishing second in the Big Nine with an 11-3 record. The Track teams will go to Richland on Friday May 14th for the District Track meet. This event starts at 4:00 PM. The following weekend the top finishers in the District meet will be in Yakima for the Regional meet. (May 21 and 22)

Baseball - Our baseball team finished in fourth place in the 4A Cascade division and will travel to Wenatchee on Tuesday May 11th for a 4:00 PM first round District game. A successful outing in Wenatchee will put them in the second round of districts on Friday May 14th. The site and opponent for the game will not be known until the results of all the Tuesday games are available.

Boys Golf - The boys Golf team finished fourth in the Big Nine and will travel to Wenatchee on Monday May 17th for the District Tournament. The top finishers in the District Tournament will earn a trip to the WIAA State 4A Championships on May 25 and 26 in Kennewick.

I will give you an update on the status of the Tennis and Girls Golf teams when their seasons are completed next week.

Academic Athletic Awards - We had 18 teams competing in spring sports with over 400 athletes involved. Of those 18 teams, 15 were recognized by WIAA for academic excellence. Our athletes are getting it done in the classroom as well as on the playing fields/courts. Great job, gals and guys.
The success of these teams and athletes is a result of their hard work and dedication, the outstanding job our coaches do of preparing and focusing our athletes for competition, and the support they receive from their teachers and other staff members on a daily basis at Walla Walla High School. Congratulations to the athletes, the coaches and the entire staff at WWHS. Thank you for all you do to help our student-athletes be successful and make their experience as a Blue Devil enjoyable and memorable. Don Wilkins

Latino Club plans Cinco de Mayo celebration tonight
The Walla Walla High School Latino Club is hosting a Cinco de Mayo celebration for the community Friday, May 7 in the large gym of St. Patrick Catholic Church. The party starts at 5 p.m. and ends at 10 p.m. There will be food, games, piñatas, a talent show, and a dance.

Former Blue Devil hired as new Walla Walla High School head football coach
Walla Walla Public Schools hired Matt Hamlin to replace Marc Yonts as the new head football coach at Walla Walla High School. Hamlin, who graduated from Walla Walla High School in 1999, will also teach math at the high school.

Hamlin was a three sport athlete at Walla Walla High School and earned All-State honors in football as a wide receiver his senior year. He was also the point guard on the 1999 Blue Devil basketball team that won the 4A state championship and was a member of the WWHS baseball team.

“This is my dream job,” Hamlin said. “I love coaching football and am excited to come home.”

Following graduation from WWHS, Hamlin enrolled at Eastern Oregon University (EOU) where he was a three year starter on the football team and earned his bachelor’s in science degree. He was selected as team captain his junior and senior years at EOU and was voted the offensive player of the year by his teammates his senior year. He earned a Masters of Arts in Teaching from Concordia University in Portland, OR.

In 2004, he taught and coached football at La Salle High School in Oregon. From 2005-2010, he has been an assistant football coach at Skyview High School, Vancouver, WA where he has helped head coach Steve Kizer build the program into a perennial state contender. Hamlin is also a math and physical education teacher at Skyview High School.

“Matt has tremendous energy and will do the things needed to continue the proud history of Blue Devil football,” District Athletic Director Don Wilkins said. “He has learned from some outstanding coaches in his playing and coaching career and will use these experiences to make decisions as he leads our program.”

Wilkins says Hamlin will relate well with the student-athletes and bring a contagious enthusiasm which should produce great things on the field.

“I feel fortunate to get a young coach with Matt’s background and enthusiasm to lead our program.” Wilkins said. “Players will have fun and enjoy their time as Blue Devil football players.”

Wilkins said despite the late hiring, Hamlin and his coaches are preparing the spring practice schedule, summer team camp and the 2010 season information for release to players and families later this week.

School Nurses Day
Tuesday night Superintendent Rich Carter announced May 12 as School Nurses Day. He thanked district health clinicians for the valuable support they provide.
Wa-Hi Science Curriculum project supports learning
Walla Walla High School science teachers are participating in the National Academy for Curriculum Leadership pilot project to introduce new materials and teaching strategies to the school. Assistant Principal Kirk Jameson reported to school board members Tuesday night the district is receiving $120,000 worth of curriculum at no cost.

Walla Walla High School is in year one of this pilot project. They will continue the effort next year with an option for a third year. The group reported the curriculum features multiple areas of science so students see the big picture of how it all works.

Green Park teachers enhance parent involvement
Green Park Elementary teachers Claudia Saldivar, Berta Herrera-Trejo, Elizabeth Razo reported to school board members Tuesday night on a parent involvement project they are completing in conjunction with earning their master’s degree from Gonzaga University.

Through this project, they have developed parenting classes, parent surveys and fun activities for the entire family. They reported the evidence is clear parent involvement improves student achievement and builds school support. They are scheduled to complete the requirements of their degrees in July.
Walla Walla High School teacher offered Dayton principal position
Walla Walla High School Social Studies teacher Andy Maheras was offered the principal position at Dayton High School during the May 5 Dayton School District board meeting. Maheras and the Dayton School District will negotiate a contract in the coming days and submit it for final approval at the Dayton School District board meeting scheduled for Wednesday, May 19.

Maheras has been employed by Walla Walla Public Schools for nine years; the past three years at Walla Walla High School. Maheras has also had administrative internships at Walla Walla High School, Garrison Middle School, Creekside Alternative, Blue Ridge and Edison Elementary Schools during his tenure in Walla Walla. Maheras was also a classroom teacher at Paine (Lincoln) Alternative High School, Garrison Middle School and Pioneer Middle School during his time in the Walla Walla Public Schools. Maheras has also worked for the Walla Walla County Juvenile Justice Center as a probation/parole officer and at the Children’s Home Society of Walla Walla as a mental health counselor working with local schools.

Maheras earned a bachelor’s degree from Whitman College, a Master’s in Teaching degree from Walla Walla University and his administrative credentials from Washington State University.

“I’ve enjoyed my time working for Walla Walla Public Schools. I’m looking forward to the challenge of my new position,” Maheras said. “This will be a great opportunity to further my positive influence with children and to become an integral part of the Dayton community.”

Maheras is expected to submit his letter of resignation to Walla Walla Public Schools pending the final approval of the Dayton School Board.

“BDAD” - Blue Devil Athletic Development summer program
The BDAD summer program is designed to help boys and girls in grades 6-12 improve their overall athletic ability for all sports!

Dates: June 29 to August 5 (Monday - Thursday)

Session 1 - 8:00 - 9:00 a.m. (Incoming 9th-12th grade students)

Session 2 - 9:00 - 10:00 a.m. (Incoming 6th-8th grade students)

Session 3 - 10:00 - 11:00 a.m. (Incoming 9th-12th grade students)

Instructors: Eric Hisaw & Amy Hisaw
Location: Wa-Hi Weight Rm & Gym
Cost: $30 pre-registered / $35 at door

Note: Students will need a medical release and a parent permission form, which they can get at the Wa-Hi Athletic Office any time or at the door. (PHYSICALS ARE NOT REQUIRED)

Information: Contact Eric Hisaw at 527-3020 or by e-mail at: ehisaw@wwps.org

Gear Up career project helps student win trip
Gear Up leaders Jerri Doyle-Grant and Margaret Thomas reported on a student career project competition. Students Ruben Avalos and Sonia Calzaretta reported on their career choices. Avalos placed third in the competition and won a trip to Washington DC. this summer. Avalos reported he would like to be a police officer, while Calzaretta is interest in being a paleontologist.

Get Smart About Credit parents and students meeting
A special evening for students and their parents
A one-evening discussion about credit –what it is, what it is used for, how it works, what to look out for – specially designed for families. Parents must bring at least one teenager. A teenager must bring at least one parent. Entire families welcome!
Thursday, May 20
Dinner provided beginning at 6:15
Presentation and discussion 6:30 – 7:30
Location: First Congregational Church of Walla Walla (child care will be available)
Because of limited seating preregistration is REQUIRED!

Please contact Noah Leavitt at nsleavitt@hotmail.com or 529.4080 to preregister.
This session will be presented by bankers from Community Bank and is made possible by the Walla Walla Asset Building Coalition and Walla Walla Public Schools.

The Moms’ Network Kicks Off A Diaper Drive to benefit Helpline of Walla Walla
Beginning May 1 thru June 19 The Moms’ Network will be collecting diapers to donate to Helpline. Diapers and pull-ups of all sizes can be dropped off at Safeway on Plaza, the Children’s Museum of Walla Walla, the WWCC Parent/Child Center and Providence St. Mary Medical Center. Diapers can also be donated at the TMN Farmer’s Market booth on Saturday May 15, 29, June 12 and 19 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Helpline, an agency that connects the families of Walla Walla Valley with needed resources, has a great demand for diapers for babies and toddlers. “We as members of The Moms’ Network saw a need in the community for families and created an easy way for people to donate” said Amy Reed, Board of Director of TMN. “We are collecting new diapers but also open packages that your baby might have out grown and swim diapers.”

Included at the drop off locations is a free brochure with diaper changing tips provided by TMN. If you have any questions or would like to be a drop off location for the diaper drive, please contact Amy Reed at amyashreed@charter.net or 509-301-0693.

Wa-Hi Egyptian Tea Party culminates hands-on learning project
Thursday Walla Walla High School students in Kay Jamieson’s special education class hosted an Egyptian Tea Party to showcase what they have learned about ancient Egypt. Students researched pyramids, the mummification process, hieroglyphics language symbols, art, food and more.

Guests were treated to a variety of homemade Egyptian food dishes; prepared mostly by the students. The students were positioned at information stations around the classroom featuring their posters, handmade artifacts, websites and powerpoint displays. Guests rotated from station-to-station to hear from the students about what they learned.

Jamieson said this hands-on learning project was very successful and she is very proud of how much her students learned. She is considering posting the project on the Walla Walla High School website and creating a display for this year’s Walla Walla Fair and Frontier Days.

Wa-Hi softball team Breast Cancer fundraiser a tremendous success
Walla Walla High School Softball Team Captains Victoria Reardon and Hope Klicker extend and heartfelt thank you to the community.

“Through the tremendous support of our parents, teachers and friends, we raised over $2000 for cancer research at our Go. Fight. Win. game against West Valley April 23,” Reardon and Klicker said.

They said signed pink softballs from the fundraiser are available for pick up or will be delivered soon. They encouraged everyone to support the team as they host a first round playoff game on Thursday May 13. The Wa-Hi softball team is currently ranked number #1 in the state and 49th in the country.

Middle school students raise funds for preschool fitness program
Blue Ridge Community Preschool teacher Krissy Corbin thanked the Pioneer Middle School teachers Chris Plucker and Kyle Hurst for organizing a fundraiser in their advisory classes to purchase Smart Cycle and Smart Fit technology for her students.

“Due to rainy and snowy days, our preschool classes don’t always have the opportunity to expend pent-up energy,” Corbin said. “To combat the lack of outdoor time, Tami Plucker and I thought it would be nice to involve technology in our classes while providing our students with academics and exercise. We approached Chris Plucker and his advisory class and asked them how they would feel about doing a fundraiser to purchase a Smart Cycle and Smart Fit to be donated to the Community Preschool classes at Blue Ridge. They enthusiastically accepted the proposal.”

They have raised nearly $200 and will be purchasing and donating the equipment very soon. Corbin says are also looking for a way to have some of the advisory students deliver the equipment and spend some time teaching the preschoolers how to use it.

WMEA State Solo-Ensemble Competition Results
Walla Walla High School had 16 students, ten choir and six orchestra students, participate in the WMEA State Solo-Ensemble Competition at Central Washington University in Ellensburg on April 23 and 24.

Walla Walla High School choir took two ensembles and four soloists to the competition. The ensemble “Group Hug”, composed of Denali Molitor, Samantha herriot, Daniel Lockart and Will Bergstrom, received an Excellent (II) rating. They sang “O eyes of my beloved” in Italian and “I Cannot Conceal It” in English. The men’s sextet, Daniel Lockart, Joseph Quiner, Kolton Kolbaba, Gordon Farr, Madison Filan and Will Bergstom, received a Superior (I) rating for their performance of “I Will Sing Hallelujah” and “I’m Bound Away”.

Soloists were Allison Henckel, Willa Schober, Natalie Ingersoll-Allen and Kolton Kolbaba. Allison Henckel (Soprano) sang “Where’er you Walk” and “Ave Maria” in Latin. She received an Excellent (II) rating. Willa Schober (Mezzo-soprano) sang “Caro Mio Ben” in Italian and “Mes vers avaient des ailes” in French. She received a Superior (I) rating. Natalie Ingersoll-Allen (Alto) sang “The Lass from the Low Countree” and “Danza, Danza” in Italian. Natalie received an Excellent (II) rating. Kolton Kolbaba (tenor) sang “Gia’il sol dal Gange” in Italian and “Come Again, Sweet Love” in English. He received a Superior (I) rating.

Choir director Mr. Norbert Rossi reports, “All students did an outstanding job and worked hard to get where they are. We are pleased to have such a great representation of our school at this prestigious event.”

Walla Walla High School Orchestra took one quintet ensemble and two soloists. The WWHS Symphony Orchestra Quintet performed in the strings, large ensemble category, and received an Excellent (II) rating. Performers in the quintet were: Aislynn Beckstrand (senior, violin), Olivia Welker (junior, violin), Jonathan Barnes (senior, viola), Morgan Lenihan (junior, cello), and Vance Jones (sophomore, double bass). Soloist Anna Burgess (freshman), received a Superior (I) rating in the violin solo category. Soloist Morgan Lenihan received an Excellent (II) rating in the cello solo category.

Green Park staff to enter team in Relay for Life event
The staff at Green Park is doing the Relay for Life again for the American Cancer Society. It starts June 11 at 6 p.m. at Borleske Stadium and goes till 4 p.m. Saturday. If anyone wants to donate to the American Cancer Society, send a check to Karen Leier at Green Park or go to www.relayforlife.org/wallawallawa and go to the Green Park team.

District names 2010 Graduates of Distinction
Walla Walla Public Schools has chosen this year’s honorees for the Graduates of Distinction program. They are: Dr. Richard K. Knuth, Class of 1969; Mary Jane Towner Glaser, Class of 1971; and Tim Donaldson, Class of 1979.

These individuals have distinguished themselves in their communities, professions or careers and continue to bring honor to the district. Members of the selection committee were Ned Shafer, Art Griff, Peggy Sanderson, Anne Golden, Doug Bayne, Abe Roberts and Mark Higgins.

The 2010 Graduates of Distinction will be honored at a reception Tuesday, June 1, 2010 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the district office Board Room.

Wa-Hi Drama Department presents the “Wizard of Oz” musical
It is the musical you know and love with all of your favorite songs! Don’t miss Glinda’s bubble, the Wicked Witch of the West and those scary flying monkeys!

Show times: 7 p.m. May 7, 8, 13, 14 and 15 and 2 p.m. May 8 and 15 (remaining schedule)
Location: Wa-Hi Performing Arts Auditorium
Ticket Prices: $6 for students and $12 for adults

Tickets can be reserved by calling the Wa-Hi Box Office at (509) 526-8613 - Mondays through Fridays, 3 to 6:30 p.m.

Classroom Close-Up features Lincoln Alternative High School teacher
This week Lincoln Alternative High School Teacher Brian Taylor is featured as part of the district’s Classroom Close-Up series. A fun, information filled newsletter will be posted on the district website next week - (www.wwps.org). A public service announcement radio spot featuring Taylor is now playing on regional stations.
Community Center for Youth plans 10th Anniversary celebration
Walla Walla’s Community Center for Youth has been in place for 10 years and the organization is planning its “Big 10” event to celebrate the milestone.
- “Big 10” Anniversary Celebration: May 14
- 5:30 to 10 p.m.
- St. Patrick’s Youth Center (408 Alder St.)
- Students will need to bring their school ID’s.
- Free food will be available, and a number of fun activities and games will take place.
- Activities include:
5:30 to 6:30 p.m. - movie and popcorn or students can play in a basketball tournament.
6:30 to 10 p.m. - carnival
7 :30 to 10 p.m. - dance
- Information: Contact Paul Rossi at 526-2571

Retirement Celebrations 2009-2010
Berney Elementary
Claudia Ford
Wednesday, May 19
3:30 p.m.
Berney Library

District Office
Rich Carter
Date: Tuesday, June 1
Time: 3:30 - 5:00 p.m.
Location: Transportation Co-Op Building

Bill Jordan
Date: June 3,
Time: 3:30 to 5 p.m.
Location: District Office Board Room

Edison Elementary
Nancy Withycombe
Date: Tuesday, May 25
Time: 3:30 to 5 p.m.
Location: Edison

Plant Facilities
Lowell Schneider
Date: June 8
Time: 3:30 to 5 p.m.
Location: District Office Board Room

Walla Walla High School
Sue Bloom, Pat Hanford, Bonnie Hanson, Don McCoy, Jerry Taylor, Lynn Waldron and   Harvey Wellington
Date: Thursday, May 27
Time: 3:30-5:00 p.m.
Location: Wa-Hi Commons
Theme: “Happy Trails”

District End-of-Year Celebrations
Garrison Middle School 8th Grade Recognition
Wednesday, June 9: 7 p.m. - Cordiner Hall, Whitman College

Pioneer Middle School 8th Grade Recognition
Tuesday, June 8: 7 p.m. - Wa-Hi Gym

Lincoln Alternative High School Graduation
Thursday, June 3: 6 p.m. - WW Fairgrounds

Walla Walla High School Commencement
Friday, June 4: 7 p.m. - Wa-Hi Commons area (gym if raining)

* Last day of school - Thursday, June 10 (early dismissal)