Walla Walla Public Schools
Week in Review - September 24, 2010

In this Issue:

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Lincoln High School students participate in weekend retreat
Lincoln Alternative High School staff and nearly 40 students traveled to Camp Wooten last weekend for The Weekend retreat. The Weekend was designed to help build positive relationships between students and staff.

Students and staff learned how communicate and work together to solve problems. Students attended several mini sessions designed to address issues related to morals, ethics, and learning more about themselves. Superintendent Mick Miller spoke to the students about overcoming challenges and taking control of their own lives and destiny.

State official visits Walla Walla to discuss Prospect Point Safe Routes to School grant request
Washington State Department of Transportation Safe Routes to School Coordinator Charlotte Claybrooke traveled from Olympia to Walla Walla Thursday to meet with Superintendent Mick Miller, Prospect Point Principal Chris Gardea, Walla Walla County Public Works officials, law enforcement officers and concerned parents about the $330,000 Prospect Point Safe Routes to School grant request.

The Walla Walla County Public Works Department submitted the grant request to secure some of the funding needed to make sidewalk, signs, bridge, roadway and bike lane improvements on Reser Road from Howard to Fern Streets. These streets provide access to Prospect Point Elementary and Walla Walla High School and are heavily used by students and families. Walla Walla County is seeking funds from other sources to complete the project.

Claybrooke said the Prospect Point Safe Routes project competes well with the nearly 150 projects which have been submitted from cities across the state. She said Walla Walla Public Schools willingness to partner on the education component of the project and the county’s ability to accept the enforcement requirements improve the chances of the grant being funded. Claybrooke said she was also impressed with the outpouring of community involvement for safe school routes initiatives.

“Community enthusiasm makes a big difference on Safe Routes to School grant requests,” Claybrooke said.

Funding requests will go to legislators during the next legislative session. Claybrooke said a funding decision would be made by June 2011.

Walla Walla Public Schools reinstates 5th grade boys and girls basketball program
Walla Walla Public Schools will offer free 5th grade boys and girls basketball this school year at all six district elementary schools after a one year absence due to budget cuts. Superintendent Mick Miller reinstated the program after district enrollment counts this fall were more than 100 students above budgeted projections.

“It’s important for the school district to offer students positive and meaningful programs outside of the traditional school day,” Miller said. “This program has a long and successful tradition in Walla Walla and, although we are not out of the recession, this is something we felt strongly we needed to bring back to our students and community this school year.”

Boys’ basketball will be held November 1 to December 17 and girls’ basketball will be held January 3 to February 15. The 5th grade boys and girls basketball program is approximately $20,000 per year to operate and nearly 250 students are expected to participate.

“For some students this is their first experience playing organized basketball,” Prospect Point Principal Chris Gardea said. “An important part of this program’s success has been the involvement of on-site coaches.  They encourage and promote students to get involved, have fun, and learn about the game.  It is something that our students really look forward to doing, and it is exciting to hear that it is coming back.”

Walla Walla Union Bulletin editorial praises Superintendent Miller
Thursday the Walla Walla Union Bulletin published a favorable editorial on new Superintendent Mick Miller. Congratulations to Superintendent Miller as he continues his transition to Walla Walla Public Schools.

Miller says he’s extremely happy to be in Walla Walla and looks forward to working with the staff, students, parents and community to continue providing opportunities for all students to be successful.

See the UB Editorial Online at: http://union-bulletin.com/page/opinion

District conducts table top drills to plan for emergencies
Tuesday members of the district’s Safe and Civil Schools Committee conducted table top drills to review emergency procedures. Walla Walla County Emergency Management Director Gay Ernst and her assistant Abby Van Donge organized the scenarios which simulated a gas leak at Sharpstein Elementary and power outages at five district schools.

Ernst guided district administrators and first responders through the scenarios by using the Incident Command System model. Mark Thompson also briefed the committee on work being done to curb bullying and harassment in schools.

Walla Walla High School Resource Office Scott Brashear from the Walla Walla County Sheriff’s Department reviewed the district’s Rapid Responder emergency management system. Brashear reported Walla Walla Public Schools is on track to meet all of the new Washington state safe and civil schools requirements for the second consecutive year. Walla Walla Public Schools is one of the few in the state to meet all requirements of the legislative changes put into law in 2007.

Safe Schools Leadership Team
Mark Higgins, Chair
Scott Brashear and Matt Wood, Law Enforcement Specialists
Mark Thompson, Crisis Prevention Specialist
Kirk Jameson, Crisis Management Specialist
Angie Gardea, Post-Crisis Recovery Specialist (GriefBusters)
Liz Campeau, Student Safety Assessment Team Chair

Safe Schools Committee members
Max Carrera, School Board
Gay Ernst & Abby Van Donge , WW County Emergency Management
Kevin Braman, WW City Police School Resource Officer
Harvey Crowder, WW County Health Department
Michael Eggleston, WA State Patrol
Terry Heisey, WW City Police
Brad Morris, WW City Fire
Rocky Eastman, Fire District 4
Peggy Needham, Parent Involvement Specialist
Luke Waggoner, WW County Human Services
Norrie Gregoire, JJC

Personnel Report (from September 21, 2010 school board meeting)
- Jonie Clark, Para-Educator, Wa-Hi
- Laurie Ferraro, Bus Assistant, Transportation
- Alejandro Garcia, Para-Educator (Temp), Blue Ridge
- Ericka Sayers, Para-Educator (Temp), Sharpstein
- Angela Skiles, Para-Educator (Temp.), Green Park
- Kimberly Tomczek, Para-Educator (Temp.), Wa-Hi
- Amanda Zagal, Para-Educator (Temp.), Blue Ridge

- William Gilbert, Music Teacher, Pioneer/Garrison, 23 years
(Bill will retire at the end of the 2010-2011 school year.)

Leave of Absence
- Paula Merson, Food Service Assistant, Pioneer, 1 year
(Paula will serve as a food service assistant at Sharpstein for the 2010-2011 school year)
-Vidalia Trejo, Para-Educator, Blue Ridge Head Preschool Program, 3 years

“Where Are They Now?” - Your new online alumni connection
Walla Walla Public Schools has created a new alumni webpage to help keep graduates connected to their former classmates. Visit www.wwps.org and click on the “Where Are They Now?” link to connect to this exciting new online program. This is a great way to stay connected with your fellow alumni and an opportunity to highlight the accomplishments and achievements of our graduates. Graduates may simply open up the page and type in information about themselves. There are also opportunities to post photos. We appreciate your support and input as we strive to bring honor and recognition to our alumni.

WW Police organize Prescription Drug Take Back Day tomorrow
The Walla Walla Police Department invites you to drop off your unused prescription medications. This program is anonymous! The National Take-Back Day provides an opportunity for the public to surrender expired, unwanted or unused pharmaceutical controlled substances and other medications for destruction. These drugs are a potential source of supply for illegal use and an unacceptable risk to public health and safety.
Location: 15 N. 3rd (WWPD)
Date: Saturday September 25
Time: 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Information: 525-3342 / www.wwacw.com

- Free
- No needles, sharps or syringes
- No mercury thermometers
- No Oxygen Containers
- No Pressured Canisters
- No Chemotherapy/ Radioactive Substances

Greenways Academy online courses available
Walla Walla High School Assistant Principal Kirk Jameson reported to school board members Tuesday night 153 students from throughout the state are taking online courses from Greenways Academy of Washington. Walla Walla Public Schools is in the process of finalizing an agreement with Greenways that would allow the district to serve as the host district for these online services for schools throughout state.

Jameson said many of the students who are participating are from private schools and are taking courses not offered at their schools. He said 95 of the students are from Walla Walla High School and nearly 20 from Lincoln High School. Jameson said most of the Walla Walla Public Schools students who are taking the online classes are using them for credit retrieval. He also said students with medical conditions, a need to work and go to school and those with other special needs find Greenways courses the right fit.

“Today’s students need options to meet their individual needs and Greenways provides another choice for students,” Jameson said. “Greenways allows students to learn at their own pace, at their convenience and in their own setting. This option is unique in today’s world of education.”

Greenways online courses are setup as open enrollment allowing students to start at anytime. Students are allowed to take one course or a full load. Students are assigned a certificated teacher for each course and can complete the work day or night. For more information, contact Jameson at 527-3020 / kjameson@wwps.org. Visit the Greenways website to learn more: http://greenwaysacademy.com/washington/

Japan trip changes the way Walla Walla High School students view the world
Tuesday night Walla Walla High School teachers Rob Ahrens and William Calhoun reported to the school board on last summer’s trip to Japan as part of the Yamate Student Exchange program. Several students also attended the school board meeting to share their experiences.

Nineteen Walla Walla High School students participated in last summer’s two week trip to Japan. The students stayed with host families, learned about the culture and were able to do a lot of sight-seeing.

“The trip changed the way I view the world,” said Kelsey Gabel, Wa-Hi Junior. “When you spend this much time with people it breaks down the stereotypes and allows you to really learn the culture. It’s an eye opening experience.”

Volunteers needed for next weekend’s Walla Walla High School Big Blue Weekend
Adult volunteers are still needed to support next weekend’s Walla Walla High School Big Blue Weekend at the Washington Family Ranch in Antelope, OR. Currently 13 adult volunteers have signed up to help, but 30 are needed to support the “work crew.” Program Chair Carina Stillman says it’s a great way to support the event and make connections with the students and other adult volunteers. Volunteers will need to provide their own transportation, but food and lodging will be provided at no cost.

Big Blue Weekend is a school-wide retreat aimed at building positive relationships between students and with staff members. Intentionally designed activities allow students to step outside of their comfort zones, break down social barriers, and develop skills they can integrate into their lives.

If you are interested in volunteering or making a donation to support this event, contact event chairs:

Carina Stillman

Kris Duncan

Sheep to Shawl: A free, family-friendly fall festival at Kirkman House Museum
- Event date: Sunday, September 26

Do your children know where their cozy winter hats and gloves and other warm clothing come from? Kids (and their parents) can follow the journey of wool from the back of a sheep to its transformation into a warm and colorful shawl at the annual Sheep to Shawl festival on Sunday, September 26.

The Kirkman House Museum will host the free festival at 214 N. Colville from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., and local artists and craftsmen will demonstrate various wool-working techniques, ranging from live sheep shearing to spinning, weaving and felting, using the wool shorn live at the festival. On display will be the unique shawl created from last year's wool that was spun, dyed and woven by local textile artist Susan Swayne. The shawl , valued at more than $200, will be awarded to the winner of a drawing to be held at the festival. A donation of $1 for one chance and $5 for six chances is suggested.

In addition, local vendors will display beautiful hand-made wool items for sale, including hats and hand-spun yarns. Free activities for children include miniature horse and carriage rides and pie eating contests.

A lamb barbecue by Graze Catering will be available for purchase from noon to 2 p.m. For more information, contact the museum at www.kirkmanhousemuseum.org.

Information: Lenel Parish, (509) 529-6228/509 200-2511 / lenelparish@gmail.com

Pioneer and Garrison plan “Food Bowl” to support Realtors Association Food Drive
Staff and students at Pioneer and Garrison Middle School are teaming with the Realtors Association to collect food for area food banks during “Food Bowl” 2010. Pioneer and Garrison are reinstituting the Food Bowl in conjunction with the annual 8th grade football game Tuesday, October 12 at 4 p.m. at Borleske Stadium.

Staff and students will be collecting food two weeks prior to the big rivalry game. Game spectators will be asked to donate a can of food to the school of their choice for entrance into the big game. Students from each school will man the donation stations during the event. There will be a final weigh-in to determine the winning school. In addition, students will participate in the weekend food pick up campaign with the Realtors Association.

“In this spirit we will compete to raise donations as we work together as Walla Walla middle schools to give back to our community,” said Pioneer Middle School Principal Dana Jones. “In this annual football game, the athletes begin the game as two middle school teams and end the game as one team helping the community.”

Walla Walla County Health Department plans annual Flu Shot Round-Up
6th annual community-wide influenza immunization extravaganza at the Walla Walla County Fairgrounds!
Dates & Times:
- Tuesday, October 19 (8 a.m. to 5 p.m.)
- Wednesday, October 20 (10 a.m. to 7 p.m.)
- Thursday, October 21 (7 a.m. to 3 p.m.)

- $30 Adult flu shot
- $65 Adult pneumonia shot
- $15 each for children’s flu / pneumonia shot (Flu Mist is available upon request).

Payment: Aetna, Medicare and Washington or Oregon Medicaid will be accepted. All others will pay at time of service. Cash, check, VISA and MasterCard are also accepted.

Walla Walla High School “Trunk-or-Treat” offers safe Halloween experience
Walla Walla High School’s Key Club will be sponsoring “Trunk or Treat” Saturday, October 30 from 5 to 7 p.m. in the SCIENCE parking lot. (NOTE LOCATION CHANGE). There will be a variety of decorated cars sponsored by various Wa-Hi clubs that will be giving out candy to area children. Admission is one can of food per attendee. The food donations will be delivered to local food banks. Wa-Hi FFA will be providing a “Haunted Barn” attraction this year. For more information, contact Shelly Mann: smann@wwps.org

Tonight’s Homecoming royalty to arrive in impressive local cars
Tonight the Walla Walla High School Blue Devils face the Chiawana Riverhawks in the 2010 Homecoming game at Borleske Stadium at 7:30 p.m. Don’t miss all of the pageantry associated with this long-standing tradition. The Walla Walla High School band will play classic songs from Journey and the dance team will perform a special halftime routine.

During the Homecoming celebration, the court will arrive in impressive cars owned by local Walla Walla residents. Here is tonight’s Homecoming halftime line-up.

- Riding in the 2005 Ford Mustang GT, owned by Mike Charlo, will be Princess Megan Sumerlin Megan is the daughter of Mary and Jarrod Sumerlin. Megan will be greeted by Prince Murphy Walsh who is the son of Kelly and Maureen Walsh.

- Riding in the 2006 Dodge Charger, owned by Tom Deccio, will be Princess Katheryn Bogley. Katheryn is the daughter of Shauna and John Bogley. Katheryn will be greeted by Prince Andrew Glaeser who is the son of Vivian and Randy Glaeser.

- Riding in Phil Eagon’s 2007 Ford Mustang California Special, will be Princess Tori Jones. Tori is the daughter of Anne North-Jones and Mike Jones. Tori will be escorted by Prince Kolton Kolbaba. Kolton is the son of Sandi Rowe and Kyle Kolbaba.

- Riding in Bill Jordan’s 2010 SS Chevrolet Camaro, will be Princess Sydney Christensen. Sydney is the daughter of Sheree and Karl Christensen. Sydney will be escorted by Prince Alex Ceron who is the son of Carmen Ceron.

- Riding in Chuck Shelley’s 2005 Ford Mustang GT, will be Princess Samantha Lizardi. Samantha is the daughter of Dora and Pedro Lizardi. Samantha will be escorted by Prince Levi Swenson who is the son of Brenda and Doug Swenson.

Classroom Close-Up features Blue Ridge Elementary teacher
This week Blue Ridge Elementary Teacher Corey Hobbs 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 Hobbs is now playing on regional stations.