Connections - September 12, 2019


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Learning Focused

Red Rover Red Rover – Send the School Year Right Over

LWSD Superintendent Dr. Jane Stavem

One of my favorite recess games as a kid was Red Rover. Some of you may remember playing this game, but for those who aren’t familiar with it, the object was to form two teams in two lines, lock hands, and do everything you could to keep the person who would be “called over” from the other team from running through the line and breaking the hands apart.

It was a great day on the playground when we got to play Red Rover and an even better day when I got to be team captain and could choose the people who would be part of my lineup.

I would carefully scout the group of eligible players to determine who would be the best at fearlessly holding the line, braving the oncoming runner as they made their best attempt to break through the bond of hands and arms that attempted to hold them back.

Read Dr. Stavem’s full message here.

Lake Washington Students Outperform State Averages on State Assessments  

Students continue to score well-above state averages
Lake Washington School District (LWSD) students continue to score well-above the state average in all areas tested by the Smarter Balanced Assessments (SBA).  

“Our students continue to achieve at high levels and we celebrate the hard work of teachers and students as we review these indicators,” noted Dr. Jane Stavem, Superintendent. “However, we also know we continue to have persistent achievement gaps that require a laser-like focus on the ways we support all students to do their best learning.” 

Students in grades 3-8 and in grade 10 took the Smarter Balanced Assessments in English Language Arts (ELA) and in Math. Students in grades 5, 8 and 11 also took the Washington Comprehensive Assessment of Science (WCAS).  

Read the full news release.

Forty-seven LWSD students named National Merit Semifinalists   

Students now compete for scholarships worth more than $31 million
Forty-seven Lake Washington School District (LWSD) high school seniors have been named semifinalists in the 64th annual National Merit Scholarship Program. The National Merit Scholarship Corporation announced the semifinalists on September 11. 

Sixteen thousand high school seniors nationwide qualified. About 15,000 of the 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 7,600 National Merit Scholarships, worth more than $31 million. See the full list of semifinalists here

Advanced Placement Exam Registration Information for 2019-20 School Year    

College Board has new ordering deadlines, late fees and cancellation fees. To meet the College Board ordering deadlines, Lake Washington School District students will register and pay for AP exams from October 14, 2019 through end of last lunch on October 25, 2019. We encourage all students wanting to take May 2020 AP exams to complete the registration and pay for their exams during this October registration window.

For students that may still be deciding in October if they want to take AP exams in May, LWSD is offering a LATE AP Exam Registration window from February 18, 2020 through end of last lunch on February 27, 2020. Students who register during the late AP Registration window will incur a $50 per exam late fee in addition to the $96 per exam fee. 

Read more about the changes College Board has made to the AP Exam registration process.

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.

SEIU Negotiations Update  

Lake Washington School District has been in active negotiations with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) since April 2019. SEIU represents Instructional Assistants, Extended Day Instructional Assistants, Technical Support Specialists, Head Start Assistant Teachers, Head Start Teachers and Family Support Specialists. The district and SEIU have recently reached a tentative agreement on a successor Collective Bargaining Agreement. SEIU leadership brought the tentative agreement to their membership in late August and we are pleased to announce that the SEIU members ratified the contract by a vote of 97%.  

District Announcements

Happy Birthday to us - LWSD celebrates its 75th Anniversary! 

On September 12, 2019 Lake Washington School District (LWSD) will be celebrating its 75th Anniversary as a district. Throughout the course of the 2019-20 school year, you will see the district celebrating this milestone with our LWSD community. Celebrating this anniversary allows LWSD to recognize the work done by the district and the countless students impacted by its schools. You will notice we have updated our logo for the year as well.

View this happy birthday video we created with the help of our amazing students and staff.


Upcoming Parent Information Nights for Highly Capable Programs/Quest  

Applications for Highly Capable Programs/Quest will be available on the district website on Monday, October 1. All applications are due on Friday, October 25 at 4 p.m. Information sessions are available for parents on the following dates/times: 

  • Kindergarten Highly Capable Information Night: 
    Thursday, October 3 at Lake Washington High School from 6:00-7:00 p.m. 
  • Grades 1-4 Highly Capable Information Night:  
    Thursday, October 10 at Lake Washington High School from 6:00-7:30 p.m.  
  • Middle School (Grades 5-7) Highly Capable Information Night: 
    Tuesday, October 15 at Lake Washington High School from 6:00-7:00 p.m. 

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.

Security System Notice 

Security camera systems are in use at our high school and middle school campuses. These security camera systems help maintain safety and security and also diminish the potential for loss or destruction of property during non-school hours. Cameras are installed in public areas only and are not installed in areas where there is a reasonable expectation of privacy.  

The security camera system may or may not be monitored or in operation at any given time. If you have reason to suspect that a camera may have recorded a crime or a violation of school rules, please report your concerns to one of the school administrators. The administrator will then review security camera footage as needed.

City of Redmond's Welcoming Week 

Check out the City of Redmond’s Welcoming Week, running September 13-22. Redmond will host multiple events that encourage connectivity and dialogue. All events are free and open to everyone, but some require registration. Visit the event web page for more information

Is your child’s backpack too heavy?  

According to the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), backpacks should weigh less than 10 percent of a student’s body weight. Backpack Awareness Day is September 18. Purchasing a backpack this year? Visit the AOTA website for tips on purchasing the right backpack for your child. 

Reminder: The old Parent Access portal is gone!  

To access Skyward, Online Payments, FinalForms (Athletic Registration), Powerschool Learning, School & Bus Finder and other helpful resources, visit our For Students and Families page. For login or access questions, email

Reminder: Want a full LWSD Calendar for the 2019-2020 school year? 

Printable versions of the district calendar are available on the district website. You can also access the LWSD Online Calendar for school-specific events. You can sign up for alerts and/or create a filter when using the calendar to see events specific to your school(s).  

Reminder: Volunteering in LWSD  

In order to volunteer at school events or chaperone field trips for your child's school, you must be an actively approved LWSD volunteer. Volunteer approvals are valid for two years from the date of approval. You can apply to be a volunteer by visiting the LWSD website and registering through our Raptor Volunteer system.  

We ask that volunteer applicants apply early, at least two weeks prior to the event or activity, in order to ensure there is enough time to complete the volunteer approval process. The Communications Office processes applications as quickly as possible but there are typically thousands of applications at the beginning of each school year.  

If you have any questions, please contact Chris Robison at or 425-936-1270. 

Building on Success

Building on Success is Lake Washington School District's long-term plan to reduce overcrowding, accommodate growing enrollment and continue to provide quality learning environments and experiences for our students.  

Thank you, voters! Join us at an upcoming Open House 

Students and teachers are settling in at four new schools this fall. Celebrate with us and see the schools for yourself at these upcoming Open House events: 

Can’t wait that long? Check out our YouTube playlist to see video from each new school:

Work with us

We’re hiring!

LWSD needs paraeducators, instructional assistants, bus drivers, mechanics, custodians, plumbers, and electricians. Job descriptions are available on the district website, under “Employment” then “Classified Employees.” Bus drivers earn $25.57 per hour. Learn more about why driving a bus for LWSD is a great job. Please share this information with your friends and neighbors. 

Sodexo/Nutrition Services is hiring

Are you looking for a way to get involved in LWSD? 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

Happy First Day!  

The first day of school was on September 3. We are so excited to welcome back our students. Here is a video of families at Sandburg Elementary School showing up and preparing for the 2019-20 school year. Watch here: