Connections - October 10, 2019


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.

Learning Focused

A Message from Dr. Jane Stavem, Superintendent 

Dr. Jane Stavem, Superintendent

As we enjoy the beautiful colors of fall, the school year is well underway and for many students, the reality of getting up and going to school every day is in full force. Each new day has its challenges – remembering everything that needs to go back the next day, maneuvering the challenges of morning traffic, preparing for class and practicing for activities and athletics. 

When I am visiting schools, I try to take time to have conversations with students, and most of them have adjusted well to the school year. They’ve found new friends, figured out their schedules and can do their locker combinations in their sleep. When I ask about what gets them up and out the door in the morning they will talk about particular classes, their wonderful teachers or some activity that is a favorite. Nearly all of them will tell me they look forward to seeing their friends. 

Read more of Dr. Stavem’s October Message here.


Lake Washington School Districts Seeks Facility Advisory Committee Members 

Lake Washington School District (LWSD) is growing rapidly. LWSD has grown from the sixth largest school district in the state to the second largest district in just five years. LWSD’s October 1 student enrollment was over 31,000 students, 1,100 more students than last year. For the last 11 years, from 2008 to 2019, the district’s enrollment grew by approximately 667 students each year. That is the size of a large elementary school. A total of 7,339 more students are in LWSD schools today than 11 years ago, representing 31 percent growth.  
LWSD is forming a Facility Advisory Committee to make recommendations for future facility planning, informed by enrollment trends, community expectations and district programs. The facility strategy will align with the District’s strategic plan and make recommendations to accommodate our rapid enrollment growth and continue to provide quality learning environments. The Superintendent and School Board will consider these recommendations as it plans for future ballot measures to fund construction.  

Read more about the Facility Advisory Committee and view the Committee Interest Form on the district website.  


Setting Up Automatic Emails for Missing Assignments  

Parents and families can choose to receive automatic notification once each day about the existence of any assignments marked by a teacher as missing. Visit the LWSD website for step-by-step instructions on how to setup automatic email notifications for missing assignments.  


Attendance Awareness in LWSD 

Attendance Awareness month in September has come and gone, but staff at Lake Washington School District want to remind the community this is something we focus on all school year long. Each of the region’s school district superintendents were challenged to come up with a fun video to raise awareness about the importance of student attendance. The campaign was organized by the Puget Sound Educational Service District. Enjoy the video and remember to visit the district website for information about the importance of student attendance at our schools.


Middle school and high school options postcards on their way 

Parents of students in grades five or eight should watch their mailboxes for this year’s middle school and high school options postcard. These postcards will be mailed out in the next two weeks. They will direct you to specific pages on the district website which outline the opportunities in these respective levels, including information about neighborhood schools and choice schools. Dates and times for each school’s Information Night will also be listed on the postcard. Parents of students in grades five will receive a middle school options postcard. Parents of students in grade eight will receive a high school options postcard in the mail. You can visit the pages now by clicking on the links below: 


Reminder: Online absence requests via Skyward Family Access 

There is a new process available for parents to request absences online through Skyward Family Access. In addition to calling or emailing the school, families can now log into their Skyward Family Access accounts to let schools know that their student will be absent. This can be for a one-day absence or long-term absences as well. Click here for instructions on how to use this new process.


District Announcements

Elementary conferences on October 14, 15 and 17 

The first set of elementary conferences is scheduled for October 14, 15 and 17 in the afternoon. (These dates will be half-days for elementary students.) The conferences will give parents/guardians, students and teachers an opportunity to talk about the goals students have set for themselves. 


LEAP Day – October 18 (No School) 

October 18 is a Learning Enhancement and Academic Planning (LEAP) Day. That means no school for students so that teachers and staff members can focus on professional development.  


13th Annual Eastside Native American Education Program (ENAEP) Veterans’ Powwow – October 26 

The 13th annual Eastside Native American Education Program's Veterans' Honor Powwow will be held on October 26. Flag Raising begins at 3:30 p.m., the Veterans Dinner at 4:00 p.m. and Grand Entry will start at 6 p.m. The event will be held at Juanita High School (10601 NE 132nd Street, Kirkland, WA 98034). For additional information, contact Mary Wilber at 425-936-1402. Admission is free. Click here to view the event poster.  


World Language Proficiency Testing 

District World Language Proficiency Testing is open to all high school students who speak/read/write a language other than English and register for the test. Students can take the test once free of cost and earn up to 4 high school credits. Tests will be offered on the following dates:  

  • October 23, 2019, 1:30 p.m. at Eastlake High School (Registration closed October 9) 
  • December 11, 2019, 1:30 p.m. at Lake Washington High School 
  • February 26, 2020, 1:30 p.m. at Redmond High School 
  • April 29, 2020, 1:30 p.m. at Juanita High School  

Registration will close 2 weeks before each test date. Registration and further information about assessments can be found on the LWSD website: World Language Credit Options

For additional information please contact Theresa Vasquez, World Language Teaching and Learning Specialist. 


National School Bus Safety Week – October 21-25 

National School Bus Safety Week is a public education program that addresses the importance of school bus safety. School districts throughout the country observe School Bus Safety Week the third week in October each year. This year’s theme is “My School Bus, the Safest Form of Student Transportation!” 


October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month 

October is National Cyber Security Awareness month co-founded and co-led by the Department of Homeland Security ( and the National Cyber Security Alliance (  

Program materials from the Stop.Think.Connect.Toolkit provide information and activities to help students, staff, and parents learn more about and practice safe computing. Cyber criminals target vulnerable computer systems or users of technology in large and small businesses, schools and at home. Cybersecurity is a shared responsibility in which we all have a role. Click on the links to access tools for Students and Parents and Educators.  


Wear orange on October 23 to show we’re together against bullying 

Unity Day is Wednesday, October 23 
Make it ORANGE and make it end! What are your true colors when it comes to bullying? If you care about safe and supportive schools and communities make your color ORANGE on Unity Day. That’s the day everyone can come together – in schools, communities, and online – and send one large ORANGE message of support, hope and unity. Show that we are together against bullying and united for kindness, acceptance and inclusion. Read more about Unity Day


High School PE Credit Options 

High school students can meet the Physical Education graduation requirement through taking PE classes, taking the Fitness Knowledge Assessment or submitting a Fitness Plan. The Fitness Knowledge Assessment is offered three times a year. The first session was on October 9, but there are additional sessions on December 4, 2019 and February 19, 2020. Students must fill out specific forms and register for this test at their high school. Students opting for the Fitness Plan will have three opportunities to submit their plan this year. See the district website for more information. 


Reminder: General safety reminders when visiting LWSD schools  

It is always a good idea to be vigilant while out and about, visiting a school should be no exception. Just a reminder that if you park at our schools, always lock your door and put your valuables away; just like when you visit your local store. You are also encouraged to help report something suspicious if you come across a situation that doesn’t look right. You can call the LWSD Resource Center at 425-936-1200, the front office at the school you are visiting, or find a staff member and let them know the situation. For more information about safety in our school, you can visit the Safety page on the district website.  


Reminder: Earthquake Preparedness in LWSD  

Lake Washington School District (LWSD) 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 planning 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 17 at 10:17 a.m. This is a state-wide earthquake drill.  


Reminder: Advanced Placement (AP) Exam Registration Information for 2019-20

The College Board has new ordering deadlines, late fees and cancellation fees for Advanced Placement Exams. 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 who 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 the College Board has made to the AP Exam registration process

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


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. 


Student video tour of the new Timberline Middle School 

Welcome to the pack! Three Timberline Middle School students share what they like about their new school: large, writable desks and walls, space to socialize with friends, and classrooms for electives like robotics and foods.

Also, join us on Saturday, October 12 for our Community Open House at Timberline Middle School from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. 


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

2019-20 LWSD Excellent Staff Recognition Program  

Elevating Excellent Staff

Lake Washington School District’s (LWSD’s) Excellent Staff Recognition Program welcomes you to share information about one of our excellent LWSD staff members with us. Have you been inspired by someone in our schools? Do you have a teacher, paraeducator, bus driver, principal, custodian, instructional assistant, office manager, school secretary or other staff member who has elevated your life or the life of your child? Do you work with a colleague who keeps us climbing upward, elevating the quality of everything they do to provide the best education for our students? We want to hear your story! View all of the recognized staff and nominate a staff member. #LWSDExcellentStaff


Video: New technology available to every fifth grader in LWSD  

Lake Washington School District is putting the power of technology and innovation in the hands and fingertips of our students. Thanks to funding from the voter-approved 2018 Capital Project Levy, each fifth grader across the district has access to a Microsoft Surface Go while in class.