News

Holocaust art contest

Nearly 600 students in Washington, Idaho, Montana and Alaska put together inspiring work at this year’s Holocaust Center for Humanity (HCH) contest. Out of all those entries, four Nikola Tesla STEM High School students placed in the top three. This year’s “Celebrating Life: 2022 Holocaust Writing, Art, and Film Contest,” put on by HCH, challenges students to explore the history and stories of the Holocaust. 

Events

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    Connections - June 17, 2022

    Stay connected!

    This newsletter is just one way to stay in touch with what is happening in the district. Connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube for up-to-date news and information.

     

    Work with us

    We're hiring! Consider a career in LWSD

    We're Hiring

    LWSD is always seeking great talent for positions throughout our district. In addition to other positions available throughout the district, we are looking for applicants for the following positions:

    • Nurses
    • Instructional Assistants (IAs)
    • Paraeducators
    • Custodians
    • Bus drivers
    • Substitutes

    These positions are also available in a substitute role. Check out the LWSD website for job descriptions and postings.

     

    Congratulations, graduates!

    Class of 2022

    More than 2,100 LWSD students will be graduating this year. On June 13 and 14, graduating students from six of our high schools were handed their diplomas at Alaska Airlines Arena at University of Washington in Seattle. Throughout graduation season, follow our Facebook page and district website for pictures and videos of these once in a lifetime ceremonies.

    Learning Focused

    Dr. Jon Holmen

    A message from Superintendent Dr. Jon Holmen

    It’s hard to believe the end of the 2021-22 school year is here. I wanted to share my letter to the graduating class of 2022. Congratulations, graduates!

    To the Graduating Class of 2022, 

    Modern day society has attempted to mitigate the hard things in life. Uber Eats has almost fixed the challenge of deciding whether to go out or eat in. Modern technology on cars no longer requires an acute sense of your blind spot because your car is either flashing, beeping, or driving for you. And of course, surfing the internet has never been simpler, with cookies being accumulated with every click of the mouse (or touch of the screen), your experience is exactly what you wanted, more Batman cat videos. 

    I say these things lightly but what I know is that the graduating class of 2022 has been through a period of time where no one could put bumpers up for you, no one could guard you against the difficulty, and no one could make the struggle go away. You had to dig deep and persevere to accomplish this milestone. You lived most of your high school career with the global pandemic impacting your daily lives. This experience was, at times, not pleasant. High School is about learning to be yourself, discovering what you love in life, and thinking about what you want to accomplish and yes, high school is about learning. I know many of you found yourselves experiencing dark times over the past few years as you desired a more typical experience, to be with your peers, and not have a constant nagging wonder about health and safety. 

    Visit the Superintendent page on the LWSD website to read the rest of Dr. Holmen’s message.

     

    Medication requirement - Summer School Programs 2022

    If your student had emergency medications at school in the health room or classroom during the school year, the medication, medication authorization and health plan must be turned in on the first day of Summer School. 

    If your student self-carries their medication that medication must be with the student every day of the Summer School program. 

    Per Washington state law, RCW 28A.210.320, the attendance of every child shall be conditioned upon the presentation before or on each child’s first day of attendance at school of a medication or treatment order addressing any life-threatening health condition that the child has that may require medical services to be performed at school.

    Examples of life-threatening conditions include:

    1. Severe asthma requiring an inhaler
    2. Severe allergy requiring an epinephrine injector
    3. Diabetes
    4. Seizures that require emergency medication at school
    5. Cardiac
    6. All conditions requiring emergency medication

    Thank you in advance for your help.

     

    A new communication tool called ParentSquare is coming to LWSD next school year

    Lake Washington School District (LWSD) is committed to keeping our families and staff up to date by communicating important information as it happens. That is why LWSD is moving to a new communication platform that will make staying engaged and informed with our schools even easier. 

    LWSD selected ParentSquare after reviewing potential options to provide a new translatable text messaging tool for our community. This was seen as a need both by families in our community as well as staff members and teachers across our district. ParentSquare will likely replace many other communications tools for LWSD, allowing us to focus on one solution for multiple methods of communicating – phone, text and email. The platform comes with an application (app) that will allow families to have a “hub” for information about their students. Families will be able to self-select how they receive messages from teachers, the school and the district. It also allows for two-way communication. 

    Earlier this spring, the LWSD Communications Department, Technology Operations Department and Technology Integration Department teamed up to pilot the new unified communication tool in four of our schools. By piloting ParentSquare this spring, we learned more about how best to use the tool. This also enables us to create guides and materials for teachers and families as we roll out to all schools in the fall. To best prepare for this transition, each teacher in the district will receive the Inclusive Family Communications training on the new tool prior to the start of the school year. This will allow for an easier transition to the new platform while minimizing confusion.

    More information on ParentSquare will be available to families as we approach the 2022-23 school year. Stay tuned!

     

    Four LWSD students receive National Merit College-Sponsored Scholarships

    The National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) announced recently that four Lake Washington School District (LWSD) students will receive National Merit College-Sponsored Scholarships:

    The students receiving National Merit $2500 Scholarships are:

    • Maya W. Adelman, Redmond High School - National Merit Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering Scholarship
    • Evan F. Li, Nikola Tesla STEM High School - National Merit Northeastern University Scholarship
    • Aadi S. Dalia, Eastlake High School - National Merit University of Southern California Scholarship
    • Suhani Nog, Eastlake High School - National Merit Case Western Reserve University Scholarship

    Read more about this on the LWSD website.

     

    Volunteering in fall 2022

    If you would like to volunteer in our schools in the fall, please make sure your volunteer status is current. Contact Chris Robison (crobison@lwsd.org) if you have any questions about your approval status. 

    If you’ve let your volunteer approval status lapse or you need to apply for the first time, please submit the application NOW! Here is the link to the Raptor online volunteer application

    At this time Governor Inslee’s vaccination mandate for K-12 staff and volunteers is still in effect. We will monitor the situation over the summer. 

     

    Celebrating our LWSD 2021-22 retirees 

    Lake Washington School District has created a presentation honoring all the retirees from the 2021-22 school year. We want to thank all of our retirees for their years of tireless work with the district and we wish them luck on whatever retirement holds for them. Click here to view the presentation.
     

    Reminder: Help us spread the word – Kindergarten registration is happening now for 2022-23! 

    Kindergarten Registration

    If you live in Lake Washington School District (LWSD) and your child will be five years old on or before August 31, 2022, it is time to register your child for kindergarten! Registration for all K-12 LWSD students is online. All necessary documents can be accessed on the LWSD website and completed documents can be uploaded securely. Parents who are unable to upload documents may send them by U.S. mail or drop them off at their neighborhood school.  

    Remind your friends and neighbors to register their incoming kindergarteners now! Our second priority date for registration is April 29, 2022. Registering by this date will help us ensure that we have teachers and staff in place for our first day of school in September. 

    Read more about Kindergarten registration on the district website.

     

    Reminder: Early entrance to LWSD kindergarten application now available

    In the state of Washington, students must be five years old by August 31 to register for kindergarten. Children whose fifth birthday fall between September 1 and November 30, and whose parents believe to be exceptionally qualified for kindergarten, may apply for early entrance to kindergarten. The application for early entrance to kindergarten for LWSD families is now open. Children whose fifth birthday falls after November 30 are not eligible to apply for early entrance to kindergarten.

    Please read the Early Entrance to Kindergarten FAQs before completing the application. Please contact the Accelerated Programs office at 425-936-1238 if you have questions about the early entrance to kindergarten process. Please visit the LWSD website for more information.

     

    Reminder: School meals for the 2022-23 school year

    Since the beginning of the pandemic, the USDA has funded free meals to all students, The USDA free meal waiver is set to expire on June 30, 2022. As a result, the district will start charging fees again for lunch and breakfast starting in the 2022-23 school year. The district will continue to provide student meals free of charge at all school sites through June 30, 2022. 

     

    Reminder: Free and reduced meal applications

    Even though meals are free through June 30 of this school year, we strongly encourage all families who might be eligible for benefits to submit an application now. Filling out an application now may qualify families to receive seamless meal benefits through October 15 to start the new school year. Completing an application online through Myschoolapps takes less than 10 minutes, and parents only need to complete one application per family.  

    For more information you can also visit our website.

     

    Reminder Additional benefits for free and reduced

    Students that are eligible for Free and Reduced meals are also eligible to receive fee waivers for athletics, extracurricular activities and ASB cards. In order for the district to waive these fees, you must provide consent to share your Free and Reduced eligibility status for this purpose. You can provide consent on the Free and Reduced application. If you are already qualified for free and reduced meals or you are directly certified through the State, you can provide your consent to share eligibility information in Family Access by following these instructions | instrucciones. For more information about fee waivers, please visit our website.

    School counselors can also help connect you with benefits that you may be eligible for if you qualify for free and reduced meals. 

     

    District Announcements

    Summer 2022 COVID-19 Testing

    Drive-up PCR testing sites for students and staff
    Drive-up PCR test sites are located at:

    • Support Services Center
      Tuesdays: (6/21, 6/28, 7/5, 7/12, 7/19 & 7/26) 12:00 - 5:00 p.m.
    • Lake Washington High School
      Thursdays: (7/7, 7/15, 7/21 & 7/28): 12:00 - 5:00 p.m.

    Testing is free and while insurance is not required, you may be asked to provide your insurance information if available. Testing is by appointment only.

    These test sites will accommodate testing for:

    • Individuals that have symptoms of COVID-19
    • Individuals exposed to COVID-19 
    • Individuals returning from isolation that required a negative test

    Make a drive-up appointment

    Order free at-home COVID-19 test kits
     
    On-demand testing
    Testing teams are mobile and can respond to outbreaks at any summer school, if needed.

    Symptomatic student testing
    For those students or staff who develop symptoms at summer school a take-home rapid antigen test will be sent home with the student for the parent or guardian to administer. Protocols for isolation must be followed. If proof of a negative test is required to return, the following information must be provided to the summer school. This proof can be shared in two ways:

    1. Report your results online:
      1. Proof of negative COVID-19 test
    2. Report your results directly to your school via email or in person. The information needed:
      1. The first and last names of the student
      2. The type of test performed
      3. The date the specimen was collected
      4. A negative result. Picture of the negative result must be provided for home tests
        1. Ensure test results lines are clearly visible
        2. Pictures where lines are not visible will not be accepted

    COVID-19 testing is also available through King County. Please visit COVID-19 testing locations and guidance - King County for more information. 
     

     

    ORCA pass

    Reminder: 2022 Summer ORCA Youth Pass sign-up

    Effective immediately, high school students can sign-up for a FREE Summer Youth ORCA Pass from King County Metro. The free transit pass is available for students in grades 8-12 who are qualified for Free or Reduced-Price Lunch. The Summer Youth ORCA Pass is good for unlimited rides on all local transit including any bus, the Sounder train, Link light rail, streetcar, Water Taxi and more.

    Sign up here: Summer ORCA Pass Sign-Up Form

    For more information on the program please visit the Summer Youth ORCA Pass website.

    Happy riding!

     

    LWSF logo

    LWSF steps up to support food insecurity over the summer

    The past two years have been tough on many families, causing increased food insecurity for students throughout our district. With the amount of need on the rise and the available resources declining, we know that this summer is going to be especially challenging for many families.

    In order to bridge this gap, Lake Washington Schools Foundation is partnering with LWSD and Nourishing Networks to provide Food Vouchers to over 1,000 LWSD Families this summer. This is part of The Foundation's year-long, $300,000 effort to address student food insecurity in the LWSD community, which includes the Pantry Packs weekend food program.

    This life-changing work could not happen without the generous contributions of our donors. Thank you for trusting us to act on your behalf to ensure that no child in our community goes hungry.

     

    Franklin Elementary benefits from Inclusive Libraries Grant

    Last month, students in Benjamin Franklin Elementary School in Kirkland were among the first to benefit from Lake Washington Schools Foundation's Inclusive Libraries grant

    "I am very grateful to the Lake Washington Schools Foundation for supporting our libraries in our diversification efforts. Franklin Elementary, like much of LWSD, has a very diverse demographic," says Teacher Librarian Leann Clawson. "The ability to purchase books that reflect our students is important in building community and allowing students to see beyond themselves."

    Read the full story here.

     

    Class of 2023 College Bootcamp

    Calling all Class of 2023 high school students and parents! Join independent college counselor Mary Pat O'Neil of LWSF's Find Your Fit program for a series of three webinars in July. Attend one, two, or all three! Register here.

    • Session 1: Monday, July 11 from noon to 1pm - Creating a Balanced College List
    • Session 2: Wednesday, July 13 from noon to 1pm - Completing Your College Applications
    • Session 3: Friday, July 15 from noon to 2pm - How to Write a College Essay

     

    LWSF seeks new Board of Trustee members

    Are you passionate about the work of Lake Washington Schools Foundation? Are you interested in serving and impacting families across the Lake Washington School District? The Lake Washington Schools Foundation is looking to add new trustees to our governing board. For more information, visit https://www.lwsf.org/trustee-position.

     

    Register your child for a Kids Coming Together event!

    Kids Coming Together is a program that provides opportunities for local youth in grades 3-8 to make new friends and connect with their community through service events led by high school students. Register for the following upcoming event:

    June 21: Invasive Specifics Event

     

    Building on Success

    Update on elementary school addition construction

    Construction has been ongoing at a handful of our schools this year. As we wrap up the 2021-22 school year, we would like to provide an update on these projects. Below is a comprehensive list of the work currently being done at these four schools, as well as what is expected to be worked on in the near future.

    All of these projects are a part of the 2019 Capital Construction Levy that voters approved. Each of these projects are slated to be completed by the beginning of the 2022-23 school year. 

    Mark Twain Elementary gym addition

    Twain construction update
    • Last week: Restroom tile and ceiling grid install completed
    • Upcoming: Asphalt, bathroom fixtures and gym wall panels 

    Rachel Carson Elementary four-classroom addition

    Carson classroom addition
    • Last week: Exterior siding and storefront glass complete
    • Upcoming: Painting, concrete stairs and interior glass installations

    Benjamin Franklin Elementary gym addition

    Franklin gym addition
    • Last week: Exterior siding and storefront glass complete
    • Upcoming: Painting, concrete stairs and interior glass installations

    Rose Hill Elementary commons expansion

    Rose Hill El commons
    • Last week: The north side storefront glass and metal paneling complete
    • Upcoming: Remaining storefront glass and mechanical duct work install

    Student & Staff Success

    Computer Science for All – Blackwell Elementary students participate in Minecraft Hour of Code event

    Combine two of the most popular topics for elementary students in today’s world and what do you get? An event dedicated to coding that leverages one of the most popular video games in recent memory! Second grade students at Blackwell Elementary School and Samantha Smith Elementary recently partnered up with the Microsoft Minecraft: Education Edition team and the LWSD Teaching and Learning and Technology Integration teams for an Hour of Code. This is a strategic partnership that Lake Washington School District has created with the Minecraft: Education Edition team to provide students with a new way to learn and practice coding. These field test events are in preparation for making computer science resources like Minecraft Education Edition available to all district students next school year. Read more about this on the LWSD website.

    Minecraft at Blackwell


     

    Two Sammamish Elementary School students Selected for 2022 AAA School Safety Patrol Hall of Fame

    In recognition of their dedication to traffic safety, community stewardship and leadership, Zach Illsley, a fifth grade student at Samantha Smith Elementary, and Alejandro Martinez Otto, a fifth grade student at Elizabeth Blackwell Elementary, were recently chosen for induction into the 2022 AAA School Safety Patrol Hall of Fame. The patrol advisors at each of these Sammamish schools bring a decade of experience in that role. With pride, both describe their patrollers as unlike any other students seen in previous squads. Read more about this on the LWSD website.

    Safety Patrol Hall of Fame 2022