Walla Walla Public Schools
Week in Review - April 22, 2016

In this Issue:

(Click on article
to read more)

District Stories

School Stories

Community Stories

District Stories
Berney Elementary principal to lead Teaching and Learning Department

Berney Elementary Principal Christy Krutulis was named Executive Director of Teaching and Learning during the April 19, 2016 school board meeting. Krutulis replaces Assistant Superintendent Laure Quaresma who has accepted the superintendent position at the Athena-Weston School District.

Krutulis has been principal at Berney since 2013. She will remain at Berney through the end of the school year and will also spend time at the district office this spring as part of the transition plan. Krutulis, a Whitman College graduate, was principal of Clyde Hill and Stevenson Elementary Schools in Bellevue, WA before coming to Walla Walla. She also spent 12 years as an elementary classroom teacher.

Krutulis is currently serving on the district science adoption curriculum team and is a member of the Teaching and Learning Department Professional Learning Committee. She received a Bachelor’s of Arts in History from Whitman College and her Master’s of Arts in Teaching from the University of Puget Sound. She earned her Principal Certificate from the University of Washington and is a National Board Certified teacher.

Gardea promoted to Assistant Superintendent

Superintendent Dr. Bill Jordan announced he is promoting Chris Gardea to Assistant Superintendent. Gardea leads the district’s Human Resources Department. His previous title was Executive Director. He now assumes the district’s number two leadership role. 

Open Enrollment and kindergarten registration continues until April 29

Kindergarten and Open Enrollment registration for elementary schools will be from Monday, April 18 to Friday, April 29, 2016. Kindergarten registration will be conducted at the student’s attendance area elementary school. Parents wishing to pick up the kindergarten registration information may do so at their child’s school beginning April 11. However, the completed registration forms will not be accepted until April 18.

Kindergarten/Elementary Registration Hours:
Monday, April 18 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.
April 19 – April 29 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Parents/guardians who wish to open enroll their child to a school outside of their attendance area may pick up Open Enrollment application or release forms at their attendance area school during normal business hours beginning April 11; however, forms will not be accepted in the receiving school until Monday, April 18.

Open enrollment requests at Walla Walla Public Schools will be granted according to priorities outlined in School Board Policy No. 3130 which will be used to determine movement of a student. School Board Policy manuals are available for public viewing at all Walla Walla Public Schools and the Administration Office. School Board policies are also online at http://www.wwps.org/district/information/school-board/policies.

Please contact your attendance area school for more information. District boundary maps are available at all schools, the Administration Office at 364 South Park Street, and online at www.wwps.org . Click on the District A to Z link and then click on Boundary Map.

ThoughtExchange “Star” phase closes Sunday

Staff and parents received emails this week encouraging them to participate in the “Star” phase of the Spring 2016 ThoughtExchange community engagement. This phase allows participants to review the thoughts of others and add “stars” next to the ones which align to their thinking. This process helps district leaders have a better understanding of the issues and priorities. The “Star” phase will close April 24 at 11 p.m. Community members and students have an opportunity to self-register via the district’s website to participate in the “Star” phase by clicking: -- http://wwps.thoughtexchange.com/invitation/

The Spring 2016 ThoughtExchange engagement focuses on strategic planning as the district prepares to begin a process next school year. Stakeholders have been asked to weigh in on what are some ways the district can grow or improve in the next three years. The process is seeking to gain examples of what the district is doing well that should continue to be a focus in the next three years and provide an opportunity for participants to ask clarifying questions about the strategic planning process. Results will be made public prior to the end of the school year.

District names Art Regier Volunteers of the Year

In celebration of Volunteer Appreciation Month, Superintendent Dr. Bill Jordan and School Board President Cindy Meyer are proud to announce Kara Schulke, Tim Meliah, Janis Nelson, Kay Barga, Jamie Griffith (Trinity Baptist Church), Norma Facio and Elsa Araiza as the district’s 2015-2016 Art Regier Volunteers of the Year.

The Award
The Art Regier Outstanding Volunteer Award was instituted in 1991 as a memorial to “Grandpa Art” Regier. Regier, a retiree who devoted years of service to elementary schools in Walla Walla, epitomized the spirit of volunteerism in education. His tireless dedication and concern for the students he served are the inspiration for this award.

Kara Schulke – Prospect Point Elementary (for more than 11 years)
Nominators – Kate Van Cleve, Kami Kuhlmann and Suzann Rose
- Prospect Point PTA board member for years
- Sorts and labels books for “Take Home Book Bag” program
- Supports the school garden, helping set-up irrigation and straw bales
- Coordinates staff appreciation, supports math groups and literature circles

Tim Meliah – Walla Walla High School
Nominators: Mindy Meyer, Pam Jacobson and Miranda Lincoln
- Provides support and counseling in times of tragedy
- He specializes in trauma-informed practices and supports the whole child
- Tim has compassion for all and helps the district recover during challenging times
- Tim is committed to making our community a better place and goes above and beyond for others

Janis Nelson – Green Park Elementary (8 years)
Nominators: Gina Yonts, Elizabeth Razo, Tressa Baker and Lucy Gregoire
- Janis volunteers three times a week
- She helps students with science, social studies, art and reading
- She attends all special events and field trips
- Famously know as “Grandma Janis” she plays many different roles and always with a smile on her face

Jamie Griffith and Trinity Baptist Church – Blue Ridge Elementary (3 years)
Nominator: Kim Doepker
- Jamie and Trinity Baptist purchase backpacks and fill them with supplies
- They donate turkeys and support the Turkey Trot program
- They have organized a clothing and shoe drive for students in need
- They graciously prepare and provide lunch, dinner and snacks to teachers during conferences

Norma Facio and Elsa Araiza – Blue Ridge Elementary (8 years)
Nominator: Kim Doepker
- These dedicated parents come in during the summer to help teachers get ready for the school year
- They organized a decorating committee to enhance each family event to make it more special
- They do a variety of office tasks, such as stuffing envelopes and counting flyers
- They volunteer about 10 hours per week, despite having jobs outside of the home

Kay Barga – Sharpstein and Edison Elementaries, Districtwide (3 years, following 22 years as a WWPS teacher)
Nominators: Cindy Meyer, Jo Anna Gogl and Sharpstein PTA Board
- Coordinator of the Back-on-the-Road bicycle repair and helmet giveaway at all six elementary schools
- She coordinates the Wonderful Wuzical Wednesdays at Sharpstein to bring in local musical talent
- Supports afterschool science club, Picture Lab, PTA, drama club and the Ms. Manners program
- Organizes the Books for Babes program so all new borns and their families get a book to take home

Wa-Hi staff discuss facilities needs with Task Force

Community Facilities Task Force co-chairs Paul Schneidmiller and Ted Cohan and members of the task force met with Walla Walla High School staff Thursday. Staff addressed the lack of air conditioning and poor air quality, small classrooms, and inadequate science labs and equipment. They also said there is a need for more restrooms, commons spaces for students to use when they are not in class, central locations for administration and school support services including counselors. The task force is scheduled to visit Lincoln High School, Pioneer Middle School and Blue Ridge Elementary and Head Start/ECEAP before the end of the school year. This input will be used as the Community Facilities Task Force develops a long-range facilities improvement plan. 

Personnel Report (from April 19, 2016 school board meeting)

Administrative: Christy Krutulis, Executive Director of Teaching and Learning, District Office

Certificated: Kristopher Bland, Special Education, Lincoln High School
Rhonda Clements, School Psychologist, Special Education
Donna Currier, School Psychologist (.4 FTE), Special Education
Madeline Dinsmore, Kindergarten, Berney Elementary School
Jamie Kemano, English, Walla Walla High School
Stacey Klingenberg, Title I, Blue Ridge Elementary School
Stephanie Kytola, English/Language Arts (.4 FTE), Pioneer Middle School
Shauna Millett, English, Walla Walla High School
Alyssa Moreno, English (temporary), Walla Walla High School
Marissa Payton, English/Language Arts, Pioneer Middle SchooL
Kaylie Piver, Special Education, Prospect Point Elementary School
Sara Strickland, Library Media Specialist (.5 FTE), Pioneer Middle School
Diane Wright, Special Education, Prospect Point Elementary School
Rebecca Wilson, Dual Second Grade, Sharpstein Elementary School

Classified: Patricia Crowe, Kitchen Assistant, Garrison Middle School
Michael Garcia, Custodian, Walla Walla High School
Juana Ramirez de Cervantes, Kitchen Assistant, Walla Walla High School
Marco Sierra, Custodian, Walla Walla High School
Raquel Villanueva, Para-Educator, Blue Ridge Elementary School

Certificated: Mike Gobel, Math, Walla Walla High School, 26 years
Jennifer Lewis, School Psychologist, Special Education, 2 years
Janifer Sams, Fifth Grade, Blue Ridge Elementary School, 23 years
(Janifer is resigning .5 FTE and will continue as a .5 FTE Library Media Specialist)

Classified: Cheryl Copeland, Health and Nutrition Coordinator, Blue Ridge Preschool Program, 5 years
Sharyl Dill, Health Clinician, Garrison Middle School, 33 years
Judy O’Brien, Special Education Records Secretary, Special Education, 21 years
(Judy is retiring at the end of the 2016-2017 school year)
Rita Reid, Library Technician, Garrison Middle School, 34 years
Sara Strickland, Library Technician, Pioneer Middle School, 5 years
(Sara is resigning 3.5 hours and will continue as a 3.5 hour Library Technician)
Barbara Thatcher, Intervention Specialist, Green Park Elementary School, 19 years

Classified: Denise Ongers, Assistant Secretary, Blue Ridge Preschool Program, 19 years
(April – June 2016)

Funds approved for Green Park bus lane

School board members took further action to improve school zone safety by approving the transfer of $230,850 from the General Fund to add a school bus pullout at Green Park off Isaacs Ave. This project will allow parents to use Green Park Lane for student drop-off and pick-up. The separation of school buses from the parent area is a best practice in school zone safety. The improvements will be made in the summer of 2017 as part of the city’s Isaacs Ave construction project.

Family Engagement meetings aim to enhance partnership

Walla Walla Public Schools is hosting two Family Engagement meetings to support families in strengthening their relationship with the schools. This is an opportunity to be a voice in the decisions impacting family engagement in the district.

Meeting Dates
- Wednesday, April 27 from 10 to 11 a.m.
- Thursday, April 28 from 6 to 7 p.m.
- Both meetings will be at the WWPS District Office Anne Golden Boardroom
- Both meetings will be presented in English and Spanish
- Information: Call 526-6781

School Stories

SEA-TECH benches on sale now - get them while they last!

Students in the SEA-TECH Advanced Manufacturing and Welding program have created beautiful benches that are now on sale to the public. These benches are perfect for your home or business. These durable and decorative benches are $400 and the table is $325. They are powder coated, stained in a solid color stain (cedar or redwood) and available for pick-up at SEA-TECH (525 Campus Loop -- WWCC). Custom orders are also being taken. For more information, contact instructor James Polson at 509-526-2000 or by email at jpolson@wwps.org.

Mr. Wa-Hi contest brings out the best

Last night Walla Walla High School students Joe Yenney, Chris Stites, JC Wicklund, Gus Calzaretta, Alex Crump, Adrian Miranda, Ryan Rogel, and Lucas Rassbach participated in the Mr. Wa-Hi contest. These young men modeled their outfit of choice, performed a talent, and answered a question about themselves. Chris Stites impressed the judges the most and was named Mr. Wa-Hi. Funds raised are being used to support the senior class gift which will be a banner of the fight song for the large gym. Student Kaley King organized the event.

Opportunity Program video showcases services

Walla Walla Public Schools is proud of the choices it offers students based on their individual needs. A program many may not be familiar with is the Opportunity Program. The district recently produced a short video featuring this dynamic choice for students.

Click on the link below to watch the video.

National Merit Scholars named

Congratulations to Hannah Cabasco, Noah Deitrick, Stella Gryler, John Hoffman, Amelia Mott and John Peters for being named National Merit Scholars. Approximately 7400 out of 1.5 million entrants received this recognition.

The National Merit® Scholarship Program is an academic competition for recognition and scholarships that began in 1955. High school students enter the National Merit Program by taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®)—a test which serves as an initial screen of approximately 1.5 million entrants each year—and by meeting published program entry and participation requirements.

All winners of Merit Scholarship® awards (Merit Scholar® designees) are chosen from the Finalist group based on their abilities, skills, and accomplishments—without regard to gender, race, ethnic origin, or religious preference. A variety of information is available for NMSC selectors to evaluate: the Finalist's academic record, information about the school's curricula and grading system, two sets of test scores, the high school official's written recommendation, information about the student's activities and leadership, and the Finalist's own essay.

Wa-Hi ranked nationally for third consecutive year

Walla Walla High School continues to gain national recognition by US News and World Report. For the third consecutive year, Wa-Hi has received a Silver Ranking. According to this ranking, Wa-Hi is 2,581 out of 21,500 plus high schools in the nation. The US News and World Report criteria also ranks Wa-Hi 62 out of 477 high schools in the state. See more at:


Explorer students ace national math competition

Congratulations to Explorer Gifted Learners program third grade students Jack Babbitt, Jakob Sullivan and Grant Wood, fourth grader Kai Lincoln and fifth grade student Lily Franklin for scoring perfect on all the competition tests in the Continental Mathematics League (CML) competition. The third grade team was a National Winning team. There were 321 schools in the 3rd grade division. The Continental Mathematics League is a national competition. Third graders compete in three meets, while fourth and fifth grade teams compete in five. Each meet consists of six problems. These problems require advanced reasoning and logic skills. Each student completes their own test. The top six student scores from each event are entered as team score, according to Teacher Mary Cortinas. 

FFA Plant Sale

- Tuesday, April 26 - Thursday, April 28
- Hours: 9 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.
- Walla Walla High School CTE Building

Orchestra Festival supports music scholarship program

Walla Walla Public Schools announces its 43rd Annual District Orchestra Festival April 27 at 7 p.m. in the Walla Walla High School Gym. This event is open to the public. A suggested donation of $1 per person or $5 per family goes to fund the Roberta Abraham Scholarship program to support private music lessons for local children.

Applications now accepted for Head Start/ECEAP program

The WWPS Head Start/ECEAP preschool program is now taking applications for the 2016-2017 school year. The program provides free preschool classes for qualifying children in Walla Walla County.  Families are encouraged to apply for children who will be three or four-years-old by August 31, 2016. Applications are available at Blue Ridge Elementary and on the Walla Walla Public Schools website.

District schools to participate in state student travel survey

Blue Ridge, Edison, Pioneer and Prospect Point have been selected by the state Department of Health to participate in the 2016 Student Travel Survey. Department of Health staff will be randomly calling parents in May to complete the survey. Parents will be asked how their children get to and from school. Information will be sent home with students and be available on school websites explaining the survey and how the information will be used. Parents are encouraged to participate.  The 2016 student travel survey  is collaborative work by WA State Dept. of Health, Dept. of Transportation and OSPI. The survey provides necessary data needed to continue multiple programs, such as the Safe Routes to School and bike safety with bicycles provided to schools.

Pioneer Middle School students take actions to save energy - Sustainable Living Center 

Pioneer Middle School students recently received a short presentation on the benefits of saving energy in their homes. They learned about efficiency, conservation, and the impact of human energy use on our World. To encourage actions to help save energy, the students received a checklist of actions that they can take to earn points and win prizes. Some examples include making a poster to hang at school, reviewing the family utility bill(s), and going on an energy saving scavenger hunt at home. Each student, by accumulating a minimum of 50 points, will receive a $5 gift certificate to Bright’s Candies.

Students who earn an additional 50 points (100 total out of 165 possible) will have their name entered into the grand prize drawing for their choice of a long board and helmet OR a portable basketball hoop and ball (approx. $165 value) for each grade level. Additionally, the grade level that accumulates the most points, will win their choice of a pizza party or ice-cream social! Students have two weeks to accumulate points – packets are due to their science teachers on April 29. Please support and encourage your Pioneer Middle School students to participate!
For questions or additional information, please contact Erendira Cruz (509)524-5228, or ecruz@sustainablelivingcenter.com.

Community Stories
Parks & Recreation update

All Comers Track & Field Meet - Ages 12 & Under
May 1 - $3 ($5 onsite registration)

For more information on these programs or to register, please go to www.wwpr.us. Like on Facebook! www.facebook.com/wallawallapr

Planning begins for EF Tour of Scandinavia

Three one-of-a-kind capitals.Three remarkable countries. Your tour of Scandinavia begins in Oslo, home of Viking kings and canyon-cut fjords. Next it’s Copenhagen, Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale city. Here you’ll climb the 17th-century Round Tower, Europe’s oldest functioning observatory. In Stockholm, see the Royal Palace and the city’s oldest church, dating from 1306. Teacher Dan Calzaretta & parent-Group Leader, Kathryn Southwick-Hess, are leading this latest student travel adventure in July 2017.( This trip is not endorsed or supported by WWPS). EF has extended the $100 enrollment discount through April 30. The tour is filling up and you'll want to save your place.

- Kathryn Southwick Hess: mrstravelmama@gmail.com
- Web: http://www.eftours.com/tour-website/1711069XP?utm_source=link&utm_medium=RC&utm_campaign=sharetrip

The Moms’ Network Announces Spring Parent Workshops

The Moms’ Network is excited to provide two Parent Workshops for the community both concerning adolescents and teen behavior. Both events are free and open to parents, educators and community members.

On Tuesday, April 26, Barb Casey, Special Education and Behavior Specialist for Walla Walla Public School will speak on “Anxiety and Oppositional Behaviour in Adolescents”. Barb will share her knowledge, experience and provide resources to help parents, educators and community members. The event is at the Walla Walla Public Library from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Light snacks will be provided. Children are welcome to come and use the library during the program but the discussion is not for children.

On Wednesday May 4, the Moms’ Network is partnering with Lincoln High School, Walla Walla County Department of Community Health and the Washington Poison Center to discuss "Emerging Trends with Adolescents: vapor/e-cigs/edible marijuana.” Guest speaker Whitney Pennington, Education and Communications Specialist with the Washington Poison Center (WAPC) will share her knowledge, share examples and local resources on this important topic. Adults only please, the discussion is not appropriate for students/adolescents. There are three opportunities on May 4 to hear the program and participate in the discussion:
- 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. at the YMCA in the board room (bring a lunch and join the conversation)
- 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. - Lincoln High School
- 6:30 to 8 p.m. – at the YMCA (3rd Gym) child care will be provided and Spanish translation

All Moms’ Network Parent Workshops are free. The Moms’ Network of Walla Walla is a grassroots organization that provides an opportunity for parents to communicate, receive and exchange valuable community and parenting information, network with each other and be actively involved in the community. Since inception TMN has advocated for families, provided support for early learning, supported volunteerism, and provided educational opportunities for parents. For more details visit www.themomsnetworkww.com

Car seat check-up

Local statistics show 9 out of 10 car seats are installed incorrectly. Nationally certified car seat technicians will be available to ensure your child’s car seat is installed correctly.

- Tuesday, May 24
- 2 to 5 p.m.
- Children’s Home Society (1612 Penny Lane)
- Free

Unsubscribe me from this list