Walla Walla Public Schools
Week in Review - March 18, 2011

In this Issue:

(Click on article
to read more)

Walla Walla High School facility planning to take more time
Miller recommends waiting on May 2011 bond
Superintendent Mick Miller recommended to school board members during the Tuesday, March 15 board meeting to wait on pursuing a bond measure to improve Walla Walla High School.

Miller has been busy the past two months meeting with staff and community members to gather input on when the district should take a measure to the voters. Low interest rates and construction costs tempted Miller to consider a bond measure in May of 2011. He said although most people recognize Walla Walla and Lincoln High Schools have tremendous facility needs, he reported now is not the time to seek voter approval on these projects.

“We need more input from the community and staff on the design of a modernized Walla Walla High School,” Miller said. “We have met with scores of people and we need to continue this outreach as we move forward with planning a bond for November 2011 or April 2012.”

The district is partnering with architects from BLRB/USKH to develop designs for a future Walla Walla High School facilities improvement project. Miller says architects will meet more frequently with Walla Walla High School staff in the coming weeks to further refine designs. Miller said the district will conduct community meetings, organize tours of Walla Walla High School, meet with individuals, service groups, parents and staff this spring and next school year to get input on preliminary designs for the school.

Assistant Superintendent Laure Quaresma is working with Lincoln HS Principal Jim Sporleder and Lincoln staff to develop a vision for the school’s future programs to better determine long-range facility needs.

Reser Road right-of-way easement approved
Reser Road project on target to begin June 13
School board members took action Tuesday night to approve three measures to keep the Reser Road improvement project moving ahead. The district granted right-of-way/maintenance easements and donated a narrow strip of land to support the project designed to improve Reser Road from Howard to Fern Streets.

The project is slated to begin June 13 and be completed prior to the first day of school in August 2011. Walla Walla County Project Engineer Aaron Grimm said permits to replace the bridge over Yellowhawk Creek could impact the construction schedule, but he remained optimistic the project would meet the target timeline.

The Reser Road project will widen the road to 40 feet and feature eight foot sidewalks on the northside of the road and six foot sidewalks on the southside of the road. New fencing will be installed along the road to replace existing school fences. The project will not impact the playground at Prospect Point. Walla Walla County received grant money to help pay for the project. The district will not be required to contribute any funding.

“We consider the school district to be our partner in this project,” said Grimm, a Walla Walla High School graduate. “This project will enhance Prospect Point, Walla Walla High School and the entire community.”

Traffic flow will be impacted by the project. The district will work with WW County to develop a project communications plan.

Personnel Report (from 3/15/11 school board meeting)
(Classified) Ruthell Martinez, Bilingual Intervention Specialist, Sharpstein

(Classified) Karene Gonzalez, Assistant Secretary, Special Programs, 1 year
(Karene’s last day will be March 24, 2011)

Leave of Absence
(Certificated) Jeanne Lothspeich, Special Education, Wa-Hi, 23 years
(Jeanne will be on leave for the 2011-2012 school year)

Walla Walla Public Schools opens new Support Services facility with dedication and public tour
Walla Walla Public Schools cut the ribbon on its new Support Services facility located at 1174 Entley Street Friday during a public dedication ceremony. Construction on the $3.2 million project, under the direction of general contractor T.W. Clark Construction, LLC, began last March on the 9.5 acre site. The new facility is now fully operational.

The completion of the new Support Services facility represents the second phase of a project to relocate the Support Services and the Transportation Department from 325 S. Park Street to the new Entley Street site. The new Support Services facility houses the warehouse, science center, maintenance, grounds services, print shop, and food services.

The project was funded by state matching dollars from the Edison Elementary construction project bond. Twenty-two subcontractors, including five from the Walla Walla valley, worked on the project.

Public tours of the new Support Services facility and Southeast Washington Transportation Cooperative were conducted immediately following the ribbon cutting ceremony. School Board President Dr. Jim Lehmann and Facilities Support Director Dan Johnson spoke during the ceremony.

Edison’s box tops fundraising effort leads to a green haired principal
Edison students had a special St. Patrick’s Day treat thanks to meeting their box tops fundraising goal. The students raised more than $650 in box tops cash to put toward enhancing materials for the school’s library. The goal the students needed to reach in order for Principal Josh Wolcott to dye his hair green was $400. Thursday it was time for Principal Wolcott to pay up with a new hair style and color. The students were thrilled to see their principal donning a new look for St. Patrick’s Day.

Lincoln High School drama students present Hip Hop Anansi
Lincoln Alternative High School’s Play Production Company will be performing Hip Hop Anansi at the Walla Walla Community College’s China Pavilion on April 2nd at 7 p.m. and April 3rd at 2 p.m. Donations are accepted. KIDS 10 AND UNDER FREE. Hip Hop Anansi is directed by Jessica Barkl (director of the last few summer musicals) and Riki Wauchek (drama teacher) with choreography by Gabriela Salazar (TRIO).

The Lincoln Play Production Company is also performing productions of Hip Hop Anansi at Walla Walla elementary schools. Email Riki Wauchek at ewauchek@wwps.org to book a performance.

Hip Hop Anansi is the story of Anansi and his trickster family put into a sleek, urban hip hop context in this modern adaptation of an Ashanti folktale. Anansi wants the Golden Fly Pie Award for Tricksterism and is not above outwitting his own children to win it. But his rhyming, break dancing, graffiti-ing children are ready to claim the prize in their own right. Who’s fly? Who deserves the pie?

Great Explorations adventure features NASA astronaut
American Association of University Women member Ruth Ladderud briefed the school board Tuesday night on this year’s Great Explorations adventure in science, technology, engineering and math for girls in grades 5 through 8.

The highlight of the Saturday, March 26 event, which is from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Whitman Collage, is the appearance of NASA astronaut Dorothy “Dottie” Metcalf-Lindenburger. She is this year’s keynote speaker. Her talk is titled “Dream BIG, Work Hard”. Metcalf-Lindenburger will also meet with Lincoln and Walla Walla High School students Monday, March 28 at their schools.

For more information on registration, scholarships or questions on any of the events, please contact Carol Morgan, pcmorgan@charter.net, 525-3531, or visit the AAUW website at www.aauw-wallawalla.org.
Walla Walla High School Choral students host regional vocal ensemble
Walla Walla High School is hosting the Columbia Basin Music Educators Association Vocal Solo-Ensemble Saturday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m at the Wa-Hi Auditorium. This event is free and open to the public. The event will feature 65 entries, including approximately 80 Wa-Hi students. Singers from the Tri-Cities and Othello will be participating.

Exchange Club recognizes Lincoln Alternative High School and Alternative Education Program students
Congratulations to Lincoln Alternative High School seniors Chelsea Humphrey and Ryan Heighes and Alternative Education Program at Walla Walla Community College seniors Edgar Diaz and Flor Miriam Castillo 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. This year’s Youth of the Month/Year Essay Theme:
“America’s Youth and Community Service - Shining the light of volunteerism”

Humphrey has finished her graduation requirements early and is busy applying for colleges. The Lincoln staff was unanimous in their recommendation for Chelsea to receive this honor. Heighes has also completed almost all of his graduation requirements early and is planning to attend Walla Walla Community College this spring.

Pioneer Middle School students advance in Career Showcase competition
The following students placed first at the classroom level in the Career Showcase competition and have advanced to the semifinals round. The following students will compete for a finals slot during the semi-finals competition at the district office Friday at 6 p.m.

Semi-Finalist Contestants:
- Jennifer Bautista
- Kayla Crain
- Maggie Grant Herriot
- Breylnn Hess
- Tucker Lightfoot
- Geneva Petterson
- Haley Peterson
- Natalie Tucker
- Hannah Whittle

One of these students will compete at the Career Showcase Finals WSU Tri-Cities April 22 against the top three students from the region. The winner will receive an all-expenses-paid trip (with a parent chaperon) to GEAR UP’s Annual Convention in San Francisco this July.

Mahan and Van Donge featured on new Alumni Connection videos on district website
Walla Walla Public Schools recently posted two more Alumni Connect videos to the district web page at: www.wwps.org. Click on Alumni Connections to view the videos.

Lindsey Mahan - Class of 2004
Lindsey recognizes the following teachers for making a difference in her life:
- Connie Taylor Randall
- Kristen Harvey
- Eric Hisaw
- Dave Meyer
- Cliff Olds

Abbie Van Donge - Class of 2001
Abbie recognizes the following teachers for making a difference in her life:
- Michelle Shaul
- Sue Parrish
- Pamela McBride

Megan Clubb and Mark Thompson will soon be added to the series. Each video is about four minutes. Please take a moment to check them out.

Spring Break 2011 schedule
- No School: April 4-8
- Classes resume Monday, April 11

District partners with Whitman College for Community Violence Prevention Conference
Whitman College hosts the 2011 Community Violence Prevention Conference, March 29 and 30, including a lecture by Dorothy Edwards of Green Dot. etc. and educational workshops. All events are free and open to the public.

Edwards will be meeting with staff from Pioneer and Garrison Middle Schools and Walla Walla and Lincoln High Schools Wednesday, March 30 to introduce the program to the district. Communications Director Mark Higgins and Risk Management Specialist Mark Thompson will be presenting during a work session on the district’s Safe and Civil schools program and the district’s efforts to curb bullying. Superintendent Mick Miller will be participating throughout the events and will be having lunch with Whitman College leaders to conclude the conference.

Green Dot, etc. is an organization built on the premise that we can measurably and systematically reduce violence within any given community. For more, visit: http://www.livethegreendot.com/

The goals of the conference are “To bring together members of the Walla Walla Valley target audience to understand the scope of violence in our region, to share our local expertise more broadly and enable cross-training, to network and form connections across agencies and institutions and to initiate an ongoing valley-wide effort to reduce violence in our communities,” according to the Walla Walla Violence Prevention Web site.

Community Violence Prevention Conference events include:

Tuesday, March 29 - Dorothy Edwards, Green Dot, etc.
Dorothy Edwards, executive director of Green Dot, etc., presents a lecture titled “What Works? Effective Ways to Reduce Violence in Our Community.” Edwards will address how individuals in the Walla Walla community can become active agents for change by understanding why violence occurs and how they can help prevent it. 7 p.m., Cordiner Hall.

Wednesday, March 30: Free workshops
Free presentations and workshops featuring topics on “Violence prevention in our schools” and “Green Dot Program.” Visit wwviolenceprevention.com for details and to register. 8:45 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., Whitman campus, see Web site for details.

About Dorothy J. Edwards:
Dorothy J. Edwards, author of the Green Dot Violence Prevention Strategy, holds a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Texas Woman’s University. Prior to her current position, serving as the Executive Director of Green Dot, etc., a center dedicated to effective intervention and prevention of power-based personal violence, Edwards served for five years as the founding Director of the University of Kentucky Violence Intervention and Prevention Center. She has worked in both counseling and teaching capacities in higher education at Appalachian State University and Texas Women’s University as well as founding the Community Education Program at Denton County Friends of the Family, addressing sexual assault and relationship violence. With a specialty in primary prevention, she provides training and consultation in the areas of power-based personal violence, organizational capacity building, program implementation, strategic planning and community mobilization. Edwards is currently working with government entities, state coalitions, military, non-profits, community organizations, high schools and colleges from around the globe.

For more information, contact:
Barbara Maxwell, associate dean of students
maxwelba@whitman.edu / 509-527-5208

Washington State School Retirees Appreciation: Week March 14-21
School Board President Dr. Jim Lehmann read a proclamation during Tuesday night’s board meeting to honor school retirees. He thanked them for their service to our children and community. Former Prospect Point Principal Rick Nebeker and Blue Ridge teacher Harriet Michaels were present to represent the Walla Walla/Columbia County Retired Educators Assocation.

Walla Walla High School students receive regional art show awards
Congratulations to Walla Walla High School student Teresa Olivos for earning an honorable mention award for her digital photography submission to the Educational Service District 123 High School Art Show. Teresa is a freshman and is in her second semester in Keven Peck’s digital photography class.

Walla Walla High School student Jake Tegtmeier earned the “Superintendent Award” for his submission. Jake is in Dennis DeBroeck’s technology class.

Elementary schools gear up for City Battle of the Books program
Since 1982, Washington state students have annually selected a book to win the Washington Childrens Choice Picture Book Award (WCCPBA). All K-3 students can vote on this award through their district Library Media Specialist. Students may also learn more at http://www.wlma.org/wccpba .

Battle of the Books Information: Event - Wednesday, April 13 at 6:30 p.m. at the Sharpstein Elementary School Gym.

Teams from fourth and fifth grade classes throughout Walla Walla schools have been reading the 20 WCCPBA nominees. After reading the books, the students take notes on the author and literary elements such as setting, characters and plot. They also iidentify the genre and make notes on any unique features of the story. The classes have a mini-battle to determine who will represent their class through a quiz-show like competition. Then the winning team takes on all of the other fourth and fifth graders in the school to establish a School Champion!

Now each School Champion from the five schools will compete in the SECOND CITY Battle of the Books! Come and celebrate the love of learning with your children, their families and friends as they pit their wits against the champions from Berney, Blue Ridge, Edison, Green Park, and Sharpstein. For more information, contact Sharpstein Library Media Specialist Linda Seibold at: lseibold@wwps.org or at 527-3098.

Three Future Problem Solving teams qualify for State Bowl
Three teams of Walla Walla High School students have qualified to compete in the State Future Problem Solving Competition. These Future Problem Solvers will compete at Stanwood, Wash., April 14, for a berth to the International competition in June.

The teams are coached by Garrison Middle School teacher John Buissink, who will travel with them in his 27th year of coaching Future Problem Solvers. During the State Bowl, they will attempt to solve a problem relating to water quality in a futuristic scene. As the teams are timed in their endeavors, they will be required to work independently and interdependently in order to succeed.

Middle Division:
- Daniel Butler
- Lela Davidson
- Jacob Leinweber
- Catherine Feistner

Senior Division:
- Julia Cosma
- Rob Miller
- Carrie Moore
- Teagan Coleman

The third team which qualified, but will not be competing at the State Bowl, includes junior Nicole Roscamp, and seniors Mike Collison, Dan Brown and Matt Skorina.

National Electrical Contractors Association honors Walla Walla High School student-athletes
National Electrical Contractors Association and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers are proud to present the 7th annual recognition of these fine scholar athletes from Walla Walla High School:
- Gabby Anderson, basketball
- Nason Babbitt, wrestling.

These two organizations are training electricians for the future. All high school students are encouraged to contact their career counselor to explore a career in the Electrical Construction Industry which provides salary levels that are above average and careers that last a lifetime.

FarmLife magazine features Future Farmers of America Marketing team’s work with local Farmers CO-OP
Walla Walla High School’s Future Farmers of America Marketing Team is featured in the Spring 2011 issue of FarmLife magazine. The team’s photo is on display in an article featuring the team’s award winning marketing plan. Students Levi Swenson, Natalie Crum and Audrey Smith were mentioned in the article for taking first place honors at state and placing 5th in the nation for their marketing plan for sales of Massey Ferguson equipment by the Walla Walla Farmers CO-OP.

Walla Walla High School Agriculture teacher Arch McHie is the school’s FFA Advisor. Longtime volunteer and supporter Steve Bughi, who is the sales and service manager for the Walla Walla Farmers CO-OP, praised the students for their efforts in the article. He said the Walla Walla Farmers CO-OP has used their marketing plan for helping increase sales of Massey Ferguson line of equipment.

YMCA Spring Break day camp helps keep youth active when school is out
Day Camp over Spring Break is the perfect way to keep kids occupied and active during their week off from school.
- Dates: April 4 to 8
- Time: 7:45 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Instructor: Ruby Mitchell
- Age Groups: Elementary grades
- Cost: $140 (Cost for members: $120)

Each day the Day Camp staff will lead campers in:
- group games (arts and crafts)
- sports activities
- field trips to local educational landmarks

All of the resources and activities at the Y will be incorporated as well, including:
- swimming
- archery
- basketball

YMCA offers kitchen cooking class during Spring Break
When: April 4-7
Where: Someone’s in the Kitchen Restaurant
Time: 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.
Cost for Members: $60
Cost for Non-Members: $80
Age: 6-12
Instructor: Chef Gene Soto

Consumer Credit Counseling Services offers free financial literacy workshop
Laurie Tufford from Consumer Credit Counseling Services of Tri-Cities will be conducting the first ever Financial Literacy Night at Walla Walla High School Auditorium Monday, March 21 at 7 p.m. This a free, 60 minute seminar.

Tufford will be discussing such topics as needs versus wants, sticking to the basics, and watching for hidden expenses. It is the goal of this brief financial training to provide talking points for parents and students to discuss financial management principles at home. For more information, please contact Scott Reardon at Wa-Hi at (509) 527-3020 Extension 4607.

Walla Walla Kids Read 2011 Program features beloved children’s author
Walla Walla Kids Read 2011 will play host to Jon Scieszka, one of America’s most beloved children’s authors. Scieszka will entertain and educate thousands of local students at Cordiner Hall on the Whitman College campus. Dates for the event, designed for schools and open to the public, are March 21 and 22.

Walla Walla Kids Read is designed to inspire every K-5 child in the Walla Walla valley by bringing students to a world class facility to hear a well known author. All costs, including busing of students to and from the event, are paid for by Walla Walla Kids Read (this applies to the six Walla Walla based elementary schools. Schools outside of Walla Walla are invited to attend at no cost, but will be required to cover the cost of transportation).

Details about times, events, books, authors, and classroom activities are available at www.wallawallakidsread.com

Art Regier Volunteer of the Year nominations
Nominations are being accepted through Friday, March 25 for the Art Regier Outstanding Volunteers of the Year Award. Recipients will be recognized at the April 19 school board meeting. Nomination forms are available at all Walla Walla Public Schools and the district office.

Criteria for selection may include the following:
1. Exceptional service or contributions to the children of Walla Walla Public Schools
2. Unusual dedication
3. Demonstration of care, compassion and empathy

Recipients of the Art Regier Outstanding Volunteer Award will be honored with a plaque to display at their home or place of business, and their name will be permanently affixed to a memorial plaque in the school district’s board room at 364 South Park Street. For more information, please call Communications Director Mark Higgins (509) 526-6716.

Kindergarten and Open Enrollment Registration dates March 21 to April 1
Walla Walla Public Schools Kindergarten and Fall Registration period is Monday, March 21 to Friday, April 1, 2011. Kindergarten registration will be conducted at the student’s attendance area elementary school.

New Student Registration Hours:
Monday, March 21 - 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
March 22 - April 1 - 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

If there is space available to accommodate open enrollment requests, then the priorities outlined in School Board Policy No. 3130 will be used to determine movement of a student. School Board Policy manuals are available for public viewing at all Walla Walla Public Schools and the Administration Office. School Board policies are also online at http://www.wwps.org/leadership/board.htm#11

Please contact your attendance area school for more information. District boundary maps are available at all schools, the Administration Office at 364 South Park Street, and online at www.wwps.org . Click on the District A to Z link and then click on Boundary Map.

Pioneer students show school board video gang documentary
Tuesday night Pioneer Middle School students John Martin, Caleb Thompson and Hayden Hartwell, who are in Dan Calzaretta’s class, showed board members their video documentary on how gangs impact the lives of youth in Walla Walla.

The documentary featured an interview with Attorney General Rob McKenna and Walla Walla High School Resource Officer Scott Brashear. The documentary stressed the importance of students staying involved in positive school activities and working as a community on gang prevention strategies.

Walla Walla High School hosts National Honor Society Induction Ceremony Saturday
Walla Walla High School will recognize 63 newly selected National Honor Society Inductees during a special ceremony Saturday, March 19 at 7 p.m. at the Walla Walla High School Auditorium. A reception immediately following the ceremony is planned at the school’ Commons.

”Many thanks to all of the teachers who wrote evaluations for these students,” said Karen Peddicord, NHS advisor. “They are indispensable to the students’ selection. Of special interest this year was the number of students who chose to describe their Link Crew activities as their example of a memorable leadership experience. In addition to the usual sports, music, drama, 4-H and church youth group activities, students are now discovering exciting and stimulating growth opportunities through this program.”

Classroom Close-Up features Walla Walla High School government teacher
This week Walla Walla High School AP Government teacher Bill Plucker 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 Plucker is now playing on regional stations.