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Connections - September 25, 2017

Learning-Focused

Thirty-eight LWSD students named National Merit Semifinalists

Thirty-eight Lake Washington School District (LWSD) high school seniors have been named semifinalists in the 63rd annual National Merit Scholarship Program. The National Merit Scholarship Corporation announced the semifinalists on September 13.

Sixteen thousand high school seniors nationwide qualified. About 15,000 semifinalists are expected to advance to the Finalist level. More than half will win a National Merit Scholarship. These students will be able to continue in the competition for 7,500 National Merit Scholarships, worth more than $32 million.

Students qualified for these awards by completing the 2016 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. The semifinalists include the highest scoring students in each state. The semifinalists represent less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors. See the full list of National Merit Semifinalists.


Building on Success

Building on Success logoWe hope you have received our first-ever Building on Success Progress Report. It contains information about each of the eight bond projects funded by the April 2016 bond. The report is also available on the Building on Success webpage.

Check out more bond project updates on the Building on Success webpage, or sign up for future updates.


Important Reminders and Updates

Parents/community members needed for LWSD Student Academic Success Committees

Each year, Lake Washington School District forms committees to review curriculum and make recommendations for adoption. Committees are made up of teachers, administrators, parents, and community members. Members review standards, teaching practices and materials for specific courses and content areas. This year, nine committees will be meeting (K-5 Science Adoption, K-12 Sexual Health Review, Secondary Math Pathways, High School Science Pathways, K-12 Arts Refinement, K-12 Health and Fitness Refinement, Multi-Tiered Systems of Support, Co-Teaching, Capital Technology Review).

The district is seeking parents/community members for each of these committees. You can learn more about these committees and have the option to apply to serve on one of these committees in this survey. Volunteer members will be selected based upon geographic location and diverse representation. Applications are due by Monday, October 2.

The district’s goal is to provide the most up-to-date, research-based and appropriate materials for children. Teams composed of people with teaching and subject-matter expertise help meet this goal. It is also important to have diverse perspectives and experiences represented.

Most committees meet between four and seven times over the year, with about half of the meetings occurring after school and half for partial or full school days. The meeting schedule for each committee is available upon request and will be sent to committee members within the next few weeks.

Committees make recommendations or instructional materials and/or next steps for programs. Recommendations for materials are forwarded to the Instructional Materials Committee (IMC). Once approved by the IMC, the materials go to the Lake Washington School District Board of Directors for final approval.

For more information on serving on one of these committees, please contact Jen Rose, Director of Teaching and Learning, at 425-936-1351.


HIV/AIDS curriculum presentation for grades 5-12 parents

Interested in learning more about the HIV/AIDS curriculum for students in grades 5-12? Attend the HIV/AIDS curriculum presentation for 6-12 grade parents on October 3, from 7-8 p.m. at the LWSD Resource Center (16250 NE 74th Street, Redmond, WA 98052). This year’s presentation for fifth grade parents will be held on December 7 from 7–8 p.m. at the LWSD Resource Center. Information about the curriculum will be shared and materials will be available for parents to review. Learn more about the district’s HIV/AIDS Curriculum.


Boundary Review Process Update

The new boundary scenarios, including the data and maps, for the Redmond area boundary review process are now available online. The committee will be available this week to discuss and answer questions regarding the updated draft scenarios at the following Community Feedback meetings:

  • September 26: 6:30-8 p.m., Redmond Middle School
  • September 28: 6:30-8 p.m., Evergreen Middle School

In addition, parents and community members will be able to provide feedback online beginning tomorrow afternoon via out Let’s Talk system on the boundary review website. We encourage you to attend a meeting and submit feedback beginning tomorrow, September 26.


October is Cyber Security Awareness Month

Save the Date: Cyber Safety event for families – October 17

Lake Washington School District will host Stefanie Thomas, an internet safety specialist on Tuesday, October 17 at Lake Washington High School. Stefanie Thomas is an internet safety expert who has worked with law enforcement for the past eight years regarding the exploitation of children online. She uses this experience to educate parents and children about internet safety and has reached over 30,000 people in the greater Seattle area. More information about this presentation will be coming soon.


Reminder: Upcoming Parent Information Nights for Highly Capable Programs/Quest

Applications for Highly Capable Programs/Quest will be available on the district website on Monday, September 25. All applications are due on Friday, October 27 at 4 p.m. Information sessions are available for parents on the following dates/times:

  • Middle School (Grades 5-7) Highly Capable Information Night:
    Thursday, September 28, Lake Washington High School Performing Arts Center
    7-8:30 p.m.
  • Kindergarten Highly Capable Information Night:
    Tuesday, October 3, Lake Washington High School Performing Arts Center
    4:30-6 p.m. or 7-8:30 p.m.
    Note: Both sessions are the same. Please plan to attend only one session.

Attendance at information sessions is optional and not required to apply to Highly Capable Programs.

If a family is unable to access the internet-based application or needs an application in a language other than English, please contact the Accelerated Programs Office at 425-936-1238.

More information on these programs can be found on the Accelerated Programs section of the district website.


Know a Hero in the Classroom?

Nominate a teacher for a Symetra Hero in the Classroom award Symetra and the Seattle Seahawks are looking for teachers who are Heroes in the Classroom. Anyone can nominate a teacher for this award. Honorees are selected based on their ability to make a real difference in students' lives; to go above and beyond in their day-to-day responsibilities; and to help students build life skills. Nominations may be submitted through the program’s online submission tool.

Symetra Heroes in the Classroom are recognized in front of their students and peers at surprise in-school presentations. Symetra makes a $2,000 donation to each teacher-Hero’s school for classroom books and supplies. Hero honorees also receive tickets to a Seahawks home game, where they are acknowledged during on-field presentations at CenturyLink Field.


Register to Vote – November Election

Any registered U.S. citizen, 18 and older, can vote in the November 7 election. The deadline to register online or by mail to vote in the November 7 election is October 9, 2017. You’ll need a current Washington state driver license or a current Washington state ID card to register online. You can also register in person at an Elections Office. For more information on voting in Washington, visit the Secretary of State’s webpage.


Earthquake Preparedness

Lake Washington School District works with all its schools to ensure that earthquake response plans are in place. Our buildings are built to seismic codes, and older buildings have been retrofitted. All natural gas lines have seismic shut-off valves. The district has a Safety Advisory Committee that meets monthly to discuss emergency and safety. As part of those plans, the district follows guidance from the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction and currently recommends “drop, cover and hold” as the state-approved response to earthquakes. Students practice this method during earthquake drills. LWSD will also participate in the Great Washington ShakeOut on October 19 at 10:19 a.m. This is a state-wide earthquake drill.


Work with us

Looking for a new job? We’re hiring!

LWSD needs bus drivers and substitute custodians. Job descriptions are available on the district website, under “Employment” then “Classified Positions.” Bus drivers earn $24.80 per hour. Learn more about why driving a bus for LWSD is a great job. Substitute custodians earn $16.78 per hour. Please share this information with your friends and neighbors.


Sodexo/Nutrition Services is Hiring

Are you looking for a way to get involved in Lake Washington School District? Would you like a part-time job that gives you the flexibility to be with your kids before and after school? Shifts that range from two hours to eight hours are available, helping serve students breakfast and lunch. Starting pay depends on experience. If interested, contact Nutrition Services at 425-936-1385.


Student & Staff Success

First grade students build math skills with plastic cups

Mead-Cup stackingCups aren’t just something you drink from. First grade students in Mead Elementary School’s STEM program used cups and craft sticks to build the tallest structures they could. Then, teacher Jaclyn Donald added constraints to the team-building activity: She challenged students to make the tallest structures they could with the fewest number of cups. Next, she asked them to use only 25 cups without other materials. Donald said the activity teaches students engineering and math skills while they are counting, measuring and comparing numbers. The students also focused on vocabulary words: challenge, constraint, greater than and less than.


Back to school at Muir Elementary is a Community Celebration

John Muir Elementary students and families were all smiles celebrating the start of the new school year! At the annual PTSA Welcome Back Social on September 7, students and families enjoyed seeing old friends and meeting new classmates. They dined on Food Truck fare, including Sweet and Savory Crepes and BBQ sandwiches. The PTSA donated ice cream bars for all. Read more about the Back to School Social at Muir.


Read more student and staff success stories here.