||No School - Friday, May 6
This was a possible snow make-up date on the calendar. Since there was not a snow day this winter, there is no school Friday, May 6. Classes resume Monday, May 9.
Edison Elementary under budget funds generate additional $730,000
Walla Walla Public Schools Chief Financial Officer Pat Johnston reported during Tuesday night’s school board meeting the district has leveraged approximately $730,000 in additional funds through successful applications of energy efficiency grants by reinvesting the $1.6 million in excess bond proceeds from the Edison Elementary construction project.
District funds were required up front as matching dollars in order to secure these state energy efficiency grants. Johnston said in addition to securing the $730,000 in funds from the state energy efficiency grants, the district also stands to cut energy costs $42,500 annually through these upgrades. Local contractors were used for the Blue Ridge project.
Summary of projects completed through reinvestment of Edison under budget funds:
Blue Ridge Elementary
- Radon mitigation system: installation of fans and venting to improvement air exchange
- Upgrade to controls for new heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems
- New HVAC controls allow for better monitoring of system to ensure proper air exchange
- Ongoing radon testing from third party continues to ensure radon levels are at or below EPA standards
- Project is expected to be completed by the end of the school year
Pioneer Middle School
- Heating, ventilation and air conditioning improvements
- Lighting improvements
- HVAC and lighting project to be completed fall 2011
* NOTE: - A new boiler will be installed at later date as a separate project – no timeline set
Telephone system upgrades at four schools
- New telephone systems at Berney Elementary, Green Park Elementary, Garrison & Pioneer Middle Schools
- Networking upgrades at these four schools in conjunction with the installation of new telephone systems
- Project to be completed fall 2011
Several factors led to the Edison project coming in under budget:
- Global recession which led to lower contractor and building supplies costs
- Excellent architectural plans and efficient construction management and project oversight
On February 6, 2007, Walla Walla voters approved the $19.5 million bond to construct a new Edison Elementary bond with a 61 percent yes count. The bond measure ballot language did include provisions to use excess funds for other district capital improvement projects.
Personnel Report (from May 3, 2011 school board meeting)
Employment - NONE TO REPORT
(Certificated) Katherine Hohimer, Bilingual First Grade, Blue Ridge, 4 years
John Stilson, English, Walla Walla High School, 7 years
Angie Butler will transfer to Pioneer Middle School from Homelink as a Science Teacher for the 2011-2012 school year.
Crystal Holmes will transfer from Garrison Middle School to Walla Walla High School as a Physical Education Teacher for the 2011-2012 school year.
||May proclaimed Partners in Learning Month
Walla Walla Public Schools has proclaimed May as Partners in Learning Month to raise awareness of the vital role businesses, agencies and individuals have in our school system. Partners in Learning Month is an opportunity for Walla Walla Public Schools to extend a sincere thank you to the more than 100 community partners who provide essential support to help Walla Walla Public Schools offer a first-class education.
Walla Walla High School students named Dell Scholars
Walla Walla High School seniors Berenice Salazar and Janella Bermudez were recently named 2011 Dell Scholars. The Dell Scholars Program, provided by the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, is a unique college scholarship designed to identify and support college educations for determined, but financially underserved students. Salazar plans to attend Washington State University next fall while Bermudez will enroll at Gonzaga University in Spokane, WA for the 2011-2012 school year.
“We are very proud of Janella and Berenice for their efforts and academic excellence,” said Mira Gobel, Walla Walla High School Associate Principal. “Teachers who have been part of their learning deserve a huge pat on the back. It takes a village to teach students and they have been fortunate to have caring teachers guiding them along.”
While many students dream of obtaining a college degree, life sometimes gets in the way, particularly for those dealing with personal responsibilities at home or in their communities. The Dell Scholars program recognizes students who have overcome significant obstacles to pursue their education.
More than just a check, the Dell Scholars Program is the first of its kind to include wrap-around services that help scholars and their families deal with personal issues – such as financial, legal and personal relationships – that might adversely affect their college career.
Dell Scholars also provides an online community for mentoring and peer interaction. The program attributes this well-rounded approach as the catalyst for achieving 85% college graduation rates among it scholars, as compared to the national average of 23% for low-income, underserved students.
“We appreciate your support of the Dell Scholars Program and your assistance in helping your Dell Scholar begin the path toward a college education,” Oscar Sweeten-Lopez, Dell Scholars Program. “Your Scholars should be proud, and your school should also be recognized as fostering students to obtain a college degree and realize their dreams.”
Explorer Gifted Learner Program key dates and end-of-year activities
Monday, May 9: 7 to 8 p.m. - Step-up night at Pioneer Middle School
* for incoming 5th graders to talk with current 6/7/8 grade students
Tuesday, May 10: 7 to 8 p.m.: Step-up night at Garrison Middle School
* for incoming 5th graders to talk with current 6/7/8 grade students
* incoming and current students do not necessarily have to attend the event at their home school - the option of locations and dates are to avoid conflicts with sports and other commitments. The same information will be covered at both events.
Saturday, May 21: 7 to 9 p.m. - Explorer Film Festival @ Wa-Hi auditorium. Everyone is invited to come view the documentaries created by all Pioneer Explorer students, and Beth Clearman’s 2nd period Social Studies class.
Wednesday, May 25: Family Bubble Night for 3/4/5 and alums at the Sharpstein cafeteria. A night not to miss for amazing feats of bubble magic! Fun for the whole family!
Sunday, June 5: 6:30 -to 8 p.m. - Garrison cafeteria - End-of-Year-Dessert and meeting with Superintendent Mick Miller. Come thank our teachers, recognize students, hear district news, and eat lots of sweets!
Monday, June 6: 6 to 8 p.m. - 8th grade Explorer celebration dinner for both schools at Thai Ploy on 9th Street. All 8th grade Explorers are invited to come together for dinner, cake, and camaraderie in celebrating their final year of Explorers and moving on to High School! (Hosted by EPO.)
Pioneer Middle School student produced video wins award at world’s largest youth film festival
Pioneer Middle School Explorers teacher Dan Calzaretta and students Brian Mott and Nate Brewer reported to the school board Tuesday night on their documentary “Black Door Art Gallery” which recently won the audience award in the National Film Festival for Talented Youth. Student Malcolm Gabbard was also a partner in the production of the video, but was not able to attend last night’s meeting.
The “Black Door Art Gallery” is about the local art gallery located in Walla Walla above Tallman’s Drug Store and its proprietor Gerald Matthews. The movie is about seven minutes long. The National Film Festival for Talented Youth is the largest youth film festival in the world: www.nffty.org. This year nearly 700 films were submitted in all genres; only seven were accepted in the documentary category.
“I am amazed that in the very first year we have entered films into the NFFTY competition, these students had their film selected and received an award,” said Dan Calzaretta, Pioneer Middle School Explorers and Humanities teacher. “These students were by far the youngest in attendance. Most of the participants were in college.”
According to Calzaretta, the students made documentaries last year for C-SPAN, but he and the students were not interested in this year’s topic so they searched for other opportunities and found the National Film Festival for Talented Youth.
“The students put in between 10 to 15 hours of work for every one minute of finished film,” Calzaretta said. “They did all the work from start to finish. This says a lot about their dedication to the project and to each other. It also shows that when we provide students with opportunities for relevant, rigorous, and real world projects they will amaze us with what they can do.”
The National Film Festival for Talented Youth was held April 28 to May 1 in Seattle.
• Brian Mott: Parents Mimi and Kevin Mott
• Malcolm Gabbard: Parents Jean Tobin and Brian Gabbard
• Nate Brewer: Parents Tanya and Bert Brewer
||Mother’s Day card creation event at City of Walla Walla Public Library
- Saturday, May 7
- 10 to 11:30 a.m.
- Create a card and a flower for your favorite mother!
- Hosted by: Whitman College Kappa Kappa Gamma Sorority
- WALLA WALLA PUBLIC LIBRARY
- 238 EAST ALDER / 527-4550
||Walla Walla High School Key Club officers elected
- Key Club Officers for 2011-12.
- President: Lauren McLanahan
- Vice-President: Alyson Ambler
- Secretary: Paige Moeller
- Treasurer: Robert Ferenz
- Newsletter Editor: Nick Peasley
- Teacher Advisor: Shelley Mann
||More portables going in at Walla Walla High School
The school board approved a $250,000 general fund transfer Tuesday night to shift dollars to the capital projects fund to pay for two portables at Walla Walla High School for additional classroom space. Walla Walla High School was built in 1963 for 1500 students in three grade levels. Currently there are 1850 students in four grade levels. Walla Walla High School will now have 16 classes housed in portables due to space limitations at the school.
Walla Walla and DeSales High School students receive Exchange Club of Walla Walla Youth of the Year awards
Congratulations to Walla Walla High School senior Olivia Welker and DeSales High School senior Danielle Hall for receiving Exchange Club of Walla Walla Youth of the Year Awards for the 2010-2011 school year.
These students receive $1000 college scholarships from the Exchange Club of Walla Walla and are now competing for $1000 scholarships at the Northwest District level for regional honors. If these students earn Northwest District awards, they will advance to the National Exchange Club Youth of the Year competition.
This year’s theme: “America’s youth and Community Service” - Shining the light of volunteerism
Mark Higgins, Chair
Olivia Welker: Walla Walla High School senior (GPA: 4.0) (Next year plans: Olivia plans to attend a four-year college)
Parents: Kimberly Montooth and Gerald Scott Welker
Counselor: Eva Hanson
- Walla Walla Symphony Youth Orchestra
- National Honor Society member
- Key Club
- Wa-Hi Journal school newspaper
Danielle “Dani” Hall: DeSales High School senior (GPA: 4.0) (Next year plans: Dani plans to attend a four-year college)
Parents: Terry and Maureen Hall
Counselor: Kathy Ruthven
- Varsity softball player
- Four year Knowledge Bowl participant
- Three year Varsity Track and Field athlete
- Active in student government
- Member of the National Honor Society
- Girls League Service Club
Teacher and administrator evaluation process to change
Assistant Superintendent Laure Quaresma and her specialized team of district leaders Jack Mehn, Richelle Palmer, Mindy Meyer, Kim Doepker and Liz Campeau reported to school board members Tuesday night on the work they are doing to modify the teacher and administrator evaluation process.
Quaresma said the state will mandate this change by 2013, so the district is getting a head start by beginning this work now. The new evaluation process will be based on a four point system, complete with rubrics and identified standards. Currently the evaluation process is based on satisfactory or unsatisfactory criteria.
Quaresma and her team are doing book studies, researching other school districts, connecting with state education leaders and meeting regularly as a professional learning community to work on this project. Quaresma said revising the evaluation tool will be a thoughtful and collaborative process. She said the new evaluation system will improve education. Campeau is working with PSE leaders to revise classified evaluations to this new model. Administrators will also convert to a similar evaluation process.
Walla Walla High School TRiO-ETS seniors attend WSU Future Cougars event
This spring 11 Walla Walla High School TRiO-ETS seniors had the opportunity to attend the Future Cougars of Color scholars program on the campus of Washington State University. The event is both a campus visitation event and a scholarship program with awards worth as much as $20,000 over four years.
“Washington State University welcomed all newly admitted students to attend the Future Cougars of Color event, where they will explore the University’s campus and academic programs and compete for scholarships,” said Max Weber, TRiO Education Talent Search assistant director. “The event is just another way WSU is building diversity and increasing the benefits we all receive from a talented, multicultural student body.”
The students spent time on campus with current and incoming students, competed for scholarships in front of panels consisting of professors and other WSU staff. The TRiO-ETS program the students are enrolled in is a federally funded program for low-income and first-generation middle and high school students which encourages students to succeed in school, graduate from high school, and attend a college of their choice after graduation.
The TRiO-ETS seniors who attended the event were:
Latino Club plans Cinco de Mayo celebration Friday night
The Walla Walla High School Latino Club is having its annual “Celebracion de Cinco de Mayo” on Friday evening, May 6, at Blue Ridge Elementary School. Starting at 5 p.m., the event will be a family celebration featuring traditional food, live music, and dancing.
The featured Banda is “Estrellas de San Juan de Pedro López” from Yakima, Washington. The cost is $4 for adults, $2 for children 5-10 years old, and children under 5 are free. There is a group rate of 6 adults for $20. Food will be available for the first 250 people who are attending the event. Blue Ridge Elementary School is located at 1150 W. Chestnut Street. Students, families and staff of Walla Walla School District are encouraged to attend.
Student-athletes earn Mick Blackburn scholarships
Congratulations to Walla Walla High School seniors Seth Alden and Gabby Anderson for each winning the 2011 Mick Blackburn Memorial Basketball Scholarship. Alden will attend Haskell Indian Nation University and Anderson will attend Walla Walla Community College. Both are planning to continue their basketball playing at those respective colleges. The students will each be awarded $500 for winning the scholarship.
Wa-Hi Cadet of the Month earns on-the-spot promotion
The Walla Walla High School JROTC “Blue Devils” Cadet Battalion has selected its “Cadet of the Month” for April 2011 and rewarded his achievement with an immediate promotion.
Cadet Cpl. Connor Buckley, a 14 year old freshman, was promoted to this new rank after he won the top spot with a total score of 319 points, according to the presiding official on the board.
The top Cadet was selected from three candidates who were inspected and examined in oral interviews by a board of four advanced Cadets, according to Lt. Col. Bill Bialozor, Senior Army Instructor for the Walla Walla High School’s Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps program.
Buckley said that he joined JROTC because he wants to be in the military. He plans to go to join the military after high school. He enjoys film.
“His strongest competitive category was his great attitude,” said Cadet Command Sgt. Maj. Seth Thomas. “This Cadet of the Month was a close match, since all of the Cadets’ performances were outstanding.”
First runner up was Cadet Pvt. 1st Class Emily Koning, a 16 year old sophomore, with 274 points. Her strongest suit was his good uniform. Second runner up was Cadet Pvt. 1st Class Dylan Ridenour, a 15 year old freshman, with 234 points. His strongest suit was his confidence.
“After the board tallied the points and the winner was clear, we held a ceremony to promote the winning Cadet one rank higher, to recognize him for his hard work and personal success,” said Bialozor.
Wa-Hi JROTC Cadets participate in the program to develop leadership skills and to strive to be better citizens in society. Many Cadets compete with drill, marksmanship, and physical training teams as well as attend the class. These Cadets get to travel to and compete in drill meets at 16 other schools in the Cascade Division that include Army, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Navy Cadet programs.
Walla Walla High School plans spring AVID events
AVID New Recruits Night
- Tuesday, May 10
- Time 5:30 – 7:00 p.m.
- Walla Walla High School Commons - 800 Abbott Road
- Who will attend: Newly selected AVID students for Garrison, Pioneer, and Wa-Hi, and their families.
- What will they do: This is a welcome to the program and parents will learn about AVID.
AVID Senior Night
- Thursday, May 26
- 7 p.m.
- Walla Walla High School Commons – 800 Abbott Road
- How many will be recognized: 15
What is AVID?
AVID, Advancement Via Individual Determination, is an elementary through postsecondary college readiness system that is designed to increase schoolwide learning and performance. The AVID system accelerates student learning, uses research based methods of effective instruction, provides meaningful and motivational professional development, and acts as a catalyst for systemic reform and change.
Learn more at: http://www.avid.org/
Media Moments: Education stories from around the state - Compiled by Walla Walla High School Junior Brittany Higgins
East Valley bond failing
-The Spokesman-Review http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2011/apr/27/east-valley-bond-failing/
Spokane schools deficit may increase class sizes
-The Spokesman-Review http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2011/apr/27/district-debt-solution-may-add-class-size/
Renton High School wins national journalism award
-The Seattle Times http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/education/2014875514_rentonhighaward26.html
Program gives kids global connections, understanding
-The Seattle Times http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/jerrylarge/2014768085_jdl14.html
Kindergartners in Maine will be learning with iPads
-The Seattle Times http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/2014756065_ipadkids13.html
Wa-Hi seniors named Gates Millennium Scholars for 2011
-The Union Bulletin http://union-bulletin.com/stories/2011/04/27/wa-hi-seniors-named-gates-millennium-scholars-for-2011
Tahoma Students to Compete in National Constitutional Competition
- The Seattle Times http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2014909351_constitution30m.html
Seattle Schools Confirms Grade Tampering at Ingraham
- The Seattle Times http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/education/2014915430_ingraham30m.html
Eastern Washington’s Bridgeport High Makes Final 3 for Obama Visit
- The Seattle Times http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2014937503_bridgeport03m.html
Balloon Stampede School Launches
- Friday, May 13
- 6:30 a.m.
Pioneer Middle School
Garrison Middle School
Prospect Point Elementary
Lincoln High School
Walla Walla High School
Classroom Close-Up features Green Park Music teacher
This week Green Park Music teacher Marybeth Norby 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 Norby is now playing on regional stations.
Wa-Hi Drama Department presents Fiddler on the Roof
The tradition of marvelous High School Musicals continues with Fiddler on the Roof. The Walla Walla High School’s Performing Arts Auditorium has been transformed into a small village in Russia, and students are busily preparing the final touches on this family favorite. Immerse yourself in the family life of Anatevka, Tevye, a poor dairyman, as he tries to instill in his five daughters the traditions of his tight-knit Jewish community in the face of changing social mores and the growing anti-Semitism of Czarist Russia.
Rich in historical and ethnic detail, Fiddler on the Roof has touched audiences around the world with its humor, warmth and honesty. It’s universal theme of tradition cuts across barriers of race, class, nationality and religion, leaving audiences crying tears of laughter, joy and sadness.
May 6, 7, 12, and 13 at 7 p.m. along with two matinees at 2 p.m. on May 7 & 14.
Get your tickets at the box office in the lobby of the auditorium May 6 and May 9-13 between 3:30 and 6 p.m. The box office is also open one hour before performances on Saturdays. Stop by to purchase tickets or reserve over the phone at (509) 526-8613.
For more information, contact Denise Marr at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Relay for Hope ‘Walk Away Child Abuse’
Take your first step in making a difference in a child’s life!
- May 6 & May 7, 2011
- Borleske Stadium
- Walla Walla
- Kick off starts at 5 p.m. Friday and ends 5 p.m. Saturday.
Friday May 6th is Family Night
6 to 9:30 p.m.
Includes a children’s walk, story time ‘The Ant and the Grasshopper’, an Aesop’s Fable, and a movie ‘A Bug’s Life’.
Bring a teddy bear, blanket, and come in your pajamas!
Individual $10 or Family $20
Registered walkers will receive a T-shirt & water bottle!
Featured Movie: ‘A Bug’s Life’
Animated Feature Film, Rated G
A misfit ant named Flik tries to save his colony from a greedy gang of grasshoppers in this computer-animated comedy. Faced with impending doom, he leads an oddball assortment of creepy crawlers from a flea circus against the menacing grasshoppers. The result is hilarious fun!
A Bug’s Life illustrates the idea of many “small” individuals coming together to overcome a much larger obstacle.
Don’t be afraid to ask others for help when you need it. Stand up for what you believe is right. Don’t Forget the walk continues on Saturday May 7th including Free Kid Olympics, Food and Family Education Booths!
The Edison Elementary School Big Truck Rally is Saturday May 7
The Edison Elementary PTA is sponsoring the Third Annual Big Truck Rally Saturday, May 7 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Big Truck Rally is a a fun family event and also serves as the PTA’s primary annual fundraiser. The event features many large farm, construction, military and emergency vehicles that you don’t ordinarily get the chance to see up close and climb in and around on. Some of the many vehicles on exhibit include a tank, fire truck, ambulance, crane, cement mixer, pump truck, low boy, dump truck, backhoe, tractors, swat team vehicles, garbage truck and many more.
In addition to all the interesting vehicles on display, there will also be lots of fun carnival-style games. Featured in the dunk tank Edison principal, Josh Wolcott along with other Edison teachers and parents including Patrick McFetridge and Lynette Fogg. Other activities include: a prize fishing pond, an iSpy Game, face painting, and a variety of craft projects thanks to The Picture Lady.
You won’t need to worry about going elsewhere for lunch, as there will be lots of food available for sale including beef & veggie hotdogs, nachos, popcorn, fruit, soda, juice, water and of course: cotton candy!
Admission is by donation, with a suggested donation of $2 per person. Free activities include the iSpy game that will also earn you a free trip to the prize fishing pool with two casts for prizes and access to all the vehicles on display. All other activities and food can be purchased with tickets on sale at the event for 25 cents each.
AVID Club announces staff versus students charity soccer match
Blue Devil College Cup (Staff vs. Students Soccer Match)
- Friday, May 20
- 6 p.m.
- Walla Walla High School Soccer Field (800 Abbott Road)
Proceeds for the Blue Devil College Cup will go toward a new Walla Walla High School Scholarship. Donations will be accepted at the match. Pitting Wa-Hi staff against Wa-Hi students in a soccer match for the first time in Wa-Hi history, the College Cup, not only provides a new annual scholarship for future Wa-Hi students, but also provides a unique and fun opportunity for Wa-Hi staff and students to partner together in an entertaining experience that everyone will enjoy.
For more information about Blue Devil College Cup, contact Sue Weber at 526-8353 or email email@example.com.
End-of-year activities and retirements (as submitted to date)
May 10 - Kit Chryst: Retirement reception, 3:15 to 4:30 p.m., Edison Cafeteria
May 19 - Cathy Spanish: Retirement reception, 3 p.m., Prospect Point Library
May 20 - Pam Lee: Retirement reception, 3:30 to 5 p.m., Sharpstein Lobby
May 25 - JROTC Military Review, 9:30 a.m., Wa-Hi Small Gym & Soccer Field
May 25 - Teresa Mobley: Retirement reception, 3:30 5 p.m., Garrison Library
June 2 - Lincoln Graduation, 6 p.m., WW Fairgrounds/Pavilion
June 3 - Walla Walla High School Commencement, 7 p.m., Walla Walla Commons area
June 7 - Pioneer 8th Grade Recognition, 7 p.m., Wa-Hi/Large Gym
June 8 - Garrison 8th Grade Recognition, 7 p.m., Wa-Hi/Large Gym
Area youth demonstrate good deeds in national video contest
Eleven-year-old Alyssa Stremcha and eight-year-old Alexis Stremcha, along with their family, entered a national video contest by Dairy Queen to win one of six Mini Coopers. The video contest challenges youth to demonstrate positive character traits and good deeds to others.
Of the thousands of videos that were entered, they made the TOP 24. The final six winners will be determined by America’s vote. The girls need votes on FaceBook to win. To watch their video and vote, follow the instructions below:
1. Log in to www.dairyqueen.com.
2. Scroll to “Vote For The Best Mini Treatment Video”.
3. Click “Go”.
4. Scroll down page to “Mini Blizzard Celebration” by Ross Stremcha.
5. Click “Vote”.
6. Login to Facebook. (You must have a FaceBook account to vote)
7. Click “Allow” on ‘Request For Permission’.
How To Post To Your Wall:
1. Check box to ‘Share On Your Wall’ & then type the following directions on ‘Post To Your Wall’. This is important because it clearly tells your friends what to do so they can vote successfully.
*Directions: To vote, click on the video title. It will take you to the video page. Click the red box “Vote For This Video”. Write “please vote” in the comment box. Click ‘add comment’. Copy & paste the * directions in the ‘Post To Your Wall’ box.
2. Click “Publish”.
Farnum organizes Partners in Learning networking luncheon
May is Partners in Learning Month in Walla Walla. Picture Lady Art Program volunteer Augusta Farnum organized a networking luncheon Monday to enhance district partnerships. Nearly 40 people attended the event held at the district board room. Guests learned more about what partners in Walla Walla Public Schools are doing to support learning in the district and community. They also exchanged contact information and discussed ways to be more efficient and effective.
Walla Walla Public Schools is in the process of creating a Partners in Learning web clearinghouse detailing information about each partner and how these resources could be used in district classrooms. Farnum plans to organize a follow-up meeting October 3. More details will come next fall. Thanks so much to Augusta Farnum for organizing this networking opportunity.