Walla Walla Public Schools
Week in Review - Oct. 15, 2020

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District Stories

School Stories

Community Stories

District Stories
Viral indicators continue downward trend prompting further planning for in-person learning 

Monday’s Walla Walla County Department of Community Health viral disease activity report revealed COVID cases continue to decline prompting the district to further plan for an Oct. 26 return to school for preschool through second grade students. Walla Walla Public Schools established viral benchmarks, consistent with State Department of Health guidelines, that transitions back its youngest learners first, followed by the remaining student population. Referred to as the Safely Reopening Schools Roadmap, once case counts meet established thresholds, the district will safely transition from distance learning to an AM/PM hybrid schedule, starting first with its youngest learners.

“This is good news and a key benchmark necessary to continue moving forward with our Yellow Stage Transition Planning timeline,” said School Board President Sam Wells. “Over the coming days we will continue to monitor case trends, have directed district staff to work with our union to finalize transition plans, and will evaluate stakeholder input prior to our Oct. 20 Board review and decision.”

Additional information for parents will be mailed home later this week to preschool-2nd grade households so that families can plan and prepare for the Oct. 26 Yellow Stage Transition should it receive Board approval. Information includes:
• Safety, Communication and Transparency Measures
• Mandatory Daily Health Screening Protocols
• Daily Schedule for PK-2nd Grade AM/PM Hybrid
• Daily Educational Experience and Accommodations
• Face Mask Requirements
• Safety and Cleaning Protocols
• Transportation Services
• Nutrition Services

More information regarding the district’s Safely Reopening Schools Plan, visit: https://www.wwps.org/safely-reopening-schools

School Board meeting Oct. 20

• Regular Business Meeting (Tuesday, Oct. 20)
• 5:30 p.m. (ZOOM)
• Open to the public

IMPORTANT MEETING NOTICE: Pursuant to the Governor’s Proclamation No. 20-28, school board meetings during the COVID-19 disease outbreak must not take place in-person, but occur remotely. Members of the public are invited to attend by utilizing the following methods:
• Watch: https://zoom.us/j/96200061981
• Listen: Dial 1-253-215-8782 and enter the Webinar ID: 962 0006 1981

Bond Oversight Committee Tours Walla Walla High School construction projects

Superintendent Dr. Wade Smith and representatives from Jackson Contractor Group took members of the Bond Oversight Committee on a tour of Walla Walla High School Oct. 13. The Bond Oversight Committee was established following the successful 2018 bond election to carefully monitor the delivery of the bond program to ensure accountability, fiscal transparency, and community trust.

Committee members toured the recently completed Science Building and other areas of the campus currently under construction. The next phase of the project includes the renovation of the original science building, music building addition and weight room/fitness center addition.

“I’m so impressed with the quality of the project and truly believe the community received what they wanted and more,” said Chair Scott Morasch. “With the success of the Wa-Hi Science Building and the ability to stay well within budget, I’m really hopeful we are going to get more than we asked for as we continue on at Pioneer Middle School and Lincoln High School.”

Bond Oversight Committee Membership:
- Committee Chair: Scott Morasch (Business, Business Owner/Operator, Financial, Facility/Construction, Parent)
- Committee Vice Chair: Mark Hess (Financial)
- Bonnie Bowton (Business)
- Yolanda Esquivel (Parent)
- Lawson Knight (Business Owner/Operator, Financial, Parent)
- Kim McDaniels (Business Owner/Operator, Financial)
- Terry McConn (At Large)
- Jennifer Mouat (Financial, Parent)
- Dick Moeller (Business Owner/Operator, Facility/Construction, Community Facilities Task Force)
- Ken Seibold (Business, Business Owner/Operator, Facility/Construction)
- Tony Wenham (Business, Business Owner/Operator)

Learn more about the Bond Oversight Committee: https://www.wwps.org/bond/bond-oversight-committee

School Stories
Jackson Contractor Group recruiting former SEATech students for employment

Jackson Contractor Group is reaching out to SEATech Construction Technology teacher Eric Matson to see if more of his former students are available for hiring following the success of other recent graduates on Jackson’s crews. Matson says for the past three years Jackson Contractor Group and SEATech’s Construction Technologies have worked together to create a long term partnership to give students the opportunity to learn the skills needed to transition into the construction industry.

“Jackson Contractor Group’s Matt Brossman and Rylan Oakland, as acting advisory members for the SEATech program, continuously show support through community engagement,” said Matson. “Our connection has evolved from supporting new curriculum to opening up their business giving graduating students a direct entry into their apprenticeship program.”

Jackson Contractor Group has recently hired three SEATech graduates for local and regional work and are looking to hire more carpenters and laborers for the Walla Walla High School and Pioneer Middle School projects and Pasco job sites.

“Of the candidates that I have interviewed, the SEATech students have better interview skills than the rest, hands down,” said Project Superintendent Chris Webb. “They also have a good understanding of construction in general and know how to work.”

Webb also reports the SEATech students have a tremendous work ethic and are in the company’s long-range plans.

“We’re hoping to make this a career for them and want them to be part of our family we are building here in Walla Walla,” said Webb. “We plan on staying in the community and want them to be a part of our company until they retire.”

These projects are prevailing wage government jobs and hourly rates for these positions start at $32 per hour. Matson is reviewing his list of former students and is planning to send potential candidates to Webb soon.

“The success of our graduates embodies the vision of Walla Walla Public Schools to Develop Washington’s Most Sought-After Graduates,” said CTE and SEATech Skills Center Director Jerry Maher. “We are very proud of our students for investing time and effort into their education and utilizing their skills to pursue careers that are in high demand. They are setting a great example for students who are interested in following in their footsteps.”

Health Center offering FREE flu shots

The drive-through Free Flu Vaccine Clinic this week for Walla Walla valley students was a great success according to The Health Center officials. Parents of child(ren) 3-18 may email help@thehealthcenterww.org to make an appointment with The Health Center at the HUB on 3rd Street to get scheduled for a FREE flu shot. The Health Center parent permission form is available at https://www.thehealthcenterww.org/parent-info and can be completed prior to arrival or in person.

The Health Center is Walla Walla’s school-based health center offering medical and mental health care needs for in-person or virtual visits during this time. Information about The Health Center is available at: https://www.thehealthcenterww.org/

Community Stories
Remember to Vote

Ballots for the November 3 General Election will be mailed to voters soon. Please remember to vote.

Contact the Walla Walla County Elections Office for additional information:

Walla Walla County Elections
363 Orchard St.
PO Box 2176
Walla Walla, WA 99362

Reach Out group seeks community feedback on substance abuse and mental health

Reach Out Walla Walla is in the process of conducting their yearly survey to understand adult concerns facing teens in Walla Walla. This survey will be given in every county and will assess concerns around substance use/abuse and mental health for our community’s youth. The survey is anonymous and should take no more than five minutes to complete. Results will be shared with the public in the spring of 2021, prioritizing concerns for our youth.

Please take a few minutes to help Reach Out by completing this survey. For more information contact Peggy Needham at pneedham@co.walla-walla.wa.us or call (509) 524.2654.


Reach Out Walla Walla está en el proceso de realizar su encuesta anual para comprender las preocupaciones de los adultos que enfrentan los adolescentes en Walla Walla. Esta encuesta se realizará en todos los condados y evaluará las preocupaciones sobre el uso/abuso de sustancias y la salud mental de los jóvenes de nuestra comunidad. La encuesta es anónima y no debería tomar más de 5 minutos para completarla. Los resultados se compartirán con el público en la primavera de 2021, dando prioridad a sus preocupaciones por nuestra juventud.
Tómese unos minutos para ayudar a Reach Out completando esta encuesta. Para obtener más información, comuníquese con Peggy Needham
al pneedham@co.walla-walla.wa.us o llame al (509) 524.2654.

Enquesta en Español

City Parks & Rec Weekly Update

• Walla Walla Soccer Alliance Skills Clinic – Ages 5-17. Cost $25-$30. This soccer clinic will adhere to all local health guidelines set forth by the WA Dept. of Health.

Please visit our website at www.wwpr.us for updated information regarding recreation programs as it becomes available. If you have questions, feel free to contact the Parks & Recreation Office at 509-527-4527, recreation@wallawallawa.gov or parks@wallawallawa.gov.

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