Walla Walla Public Schools
Week in Review - Oct. 1, 2021

In this Issue:

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District Stories

School Stories

Community Stories

District Stories
October Pulse video

October Pulse video

Superintendent Dr. Wade Smith provides updates on the district's bond projects and Fall conferences. He also encourages everyone to take the district's annual survey later this month and support students by attending home games/stage productions at no cost.


2023-2028 Strategic Plan preparation

Tuesday, Sept. 28 Superintendent Dr. Wade Smith and school board members discussed the timeline for developing the next five-year Strategic Plan. The district's current plan stands to conclude in 2022.

The current Strategic Plan hinges on four core pillars:
1. High Quality Instruction
2. Aligned and Coherent Systems
3. Social and Emotional Needs
4. Safe and Engaging Environment

Superintendent Smith noted the pandemic has impacted strategic plan initiatives and outcomes over the past two school years and continues to play a role in school operations today. He suggested the district continue with the identified core pillars from the 2017-2022 Strategic Plan this school year and next school year, to provide adequate time to recover from the pandemic and develop a new plan.

"We want an open and transparent process with multiple opportunities for stakeholder involvement, participation and feedback,” said Superintendent Smith. “The Strategic Plan must focus on our core mission of how to best serve, educate and prepare our students."

Superintendent Smith unveiled a roadmap to developing the next plan that begins this winter with developing a framework. Under this adoption model, the district will conduct outreach and plan development this spring and next fall. The plan would be finalized and adopted during the winter of 2023 with budget priorities identified in the spring of 2023. Full rollout would begin to start the 2023-2024 school year. Board members indicated they prefer an internal process for developing the plan without the use of an outside consultant. School board members will continue to discuss planning for the next strategic plan in upcoming meetings.


October is National Disability Month

In honor of National Disability Month and beyond, Director of Special Education Libby Thompson would like the community to celebrate the diversity of children and adults with disabilities.

“People with disabilities bring a lot of strengths to our community,” said Thompson. “They teach us about empathy and loving our neighbors and how to get along with each other.”

This year’s theme is America’s Recovery: Powered by Inclusion. Creating an inclusive environment benefits all, says Thompson.

“Students with and without disabilities build friendships and create a sense of community and belonging when they are included,” said Thompson. “These friendships often last a lifetime.”

This month Thompson and her staff in the Special Education Department challenge everyone to personally think of ways to stretch their own learning and understanding in regards to including people with disabilities.

“Examples can come from the classroom, workplace, and social gatherings,” said Thompson.

Below is a link to a TED Talk Thompson recommends watching in order to deepen everyone’s understanding on the importance of inclusion. Disabling Segregation: Dan Habib - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=izkN5vLbnw8


Parent/Teacher Conferences web scheduler opens Monday to schedule conferences

Parent/Teacher conferences are scheduled the week of Oct. 11-14. Due to COVID safety protocols, most conferences will be held via ZOOM or telephone this fall. Walla Walla Public Schools will open its web conference scheduler Monday, Oct. 4 for parents to schedule conferences with their child’s teacher(s). Parents experiencing difficulties using the web scheduler or who don’t have access to technology are asked to contact the school secretary to schedule a conference.

Conference Schedule: https://www.wwps.org/ (click on Conference Scheduler icon beginning Oct. 4.)


School Board Regular Study meeting (virtual via ZOOM)

• Tuesday, Oct. 5
• Regular Meeting: Meeting open to the public (Virtual via ZOOM)  /  Executive Session: Meeting not open to the public
• Supporting documents are available via the following link: https://meetings.boardbook.org/Public/Organization/997
• Board of Directors Meeting Schedule & Information: https://www.wwps.org/district/information/school-board/board-meeting-schedule
• Watch: https://wwps-org.zoom.us/j/98985750579
Listen: Dial 1-253-215-8782 and enter Webinar ID: 989 8575 0579



Personnel Report (from September 28, 2021 School Board Meeting)

EMPLOYMENT
Classified:
Cody Finn, Para-Educator, Walla Walla High School
Ian Moffitt, Para-Educator, Garrison Middle School
Nandu Nair, Data Engineer, Technology Department
Aline Raber, Para-Educator, WWCCF
Marcia Rowland, Para-Educator, Walla Walla High School
Luis Sanchez, Custodian, Walla Walla High School

RESIGNATION/RETIREMENT
Classified:
Mat Roe, Bus Driver, SE Washington Transportation, 31 years
Yvonne Segovia, Head Start Family Advocate, WWCCF, 7 years
Valerie Vicari, Head Custodian, Prospect Point Elementary School, 12 years
Patience Young, Para-Educator, Sharpstein Elementary School, 1 week


State testing resumes this fall

Last spring, the Washington State Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction opted to postpone state testing until this fall to prioritize critical in-person instruction time for the benefit of our students. Therefore, current 4th-9th and 11th and 12th grade students will be participating in the required state testing during the fall assessment window, October 4-November 10.

Assessments will vary by grade and be significantly shorter than typical state testing. The other change is students will be testing in their prior year grade level. For example, this year’s 7th graders will test on portions of the typical 6th grade assessments. The primary purpose of the fall summative tests is to support maximizing on-grade instructional time for students and educators by minimizing time spent on fall summative tests that provide a brief glimpse into where students are in their learning on the previous grade-level content.

Families will be receiving communication from their student's school with more detailed information about specific testing dates in the coming weeks. Spring 2022 state testing is planned to resume as normal.


School Stories
October is National Principal Appreciation Month 

October is an opportunity to show your appreciation for Walla Walla Public Schools’ principals in celebration of National Principal Appreciation Month. The school district recognizes the essential role principals play in providing opportunities for students to realize their potential and follow their dreams.

“Principals are the glue behind our great schools,” said Superintendent Dr. Wade Smith. “They are often the first to arrive and last to leave as they model the example for all their students of the hard work it takes to succeed.”
District principals have expanded their skill sets through the challenges of COVID-19. Distance learning, new safety protocols, virtual meetings and unprecedented social and emotional demands for students are just a few examples of the need for their visionary leadership.

“I am so proud of our principals for their tireless pursuit of success for each student,” said Superintendent Smith. “These past two years have been some of the most challenging in our history, and without hesitation our principals step up to guide and support their schools in ways large and small every day.”

Walla Walla Public Schools encourages students, parents and staff to take time this month to thank a district principal. Thank you for taking time to honor these unsung heroes for their tireless efforts in pursuit of excellence in education.


Homecoming game tonight; dance Saturday

Friday, Oct. 1
• Home football game @ 7 p.m., Theme: Blue & White

Saturday, Oct. 2
• Homecoming dance from 8-10 p.m. at the District's Maintenance Facility


Cyber attack impacts telephone service

This week Walla Walla Public Schools’ telephone service was impacted by an out-of-area DDoS cyber attack on internet-based phones. The attack was made on one of the nation's largest internet-based phone liaisons. The district, like many Walla Walla organizations, has been experiencing this interruption of telephone service off and on all week. District email services have not been impacted. District Technology specialists are monitoring the situation and appreciate your patience.


Wa-Hi sports schedules on Athletics Dept website

Visit the Walla Walla High School Athletics Department website for sports schedules, news, live stream links and important updates. Follow us on Twitter @WaHi_Athletics


GEAR UP paid tutors needed for middle school programs

GEAR UP is looking for tutors to work at Garrison and Pioneer Middle Schools. Make extra money working part-time hours during the school day or afterschool. GEAR UP is looking for people who can help with school work, are enthusiastic about working with middle schoolers and want to make a positive difference in student learning.

For more information please contact the GEAR UP Site Manager at either school.
Garrison: Terri Gingras- (509) 526-1905, tgingras@earlyoutreach.wsu.edu
Pioneer: Elionay Quiros Meneses-(509) 526-1970, equiros@earlyoutreach.wsu.edu



Community Stories
Camp Fire After School Camp Coming to CCF this Fall

Camp Fire Walla Walla is working through the licensing process to open a new After School Camp site at the Center for Children and Families. An opening date is to be determined. More information and registration details will be posted at www.WWCampfire.org in mid-October. An application for childcare subsidies for eligible families can be found HERE   


City of Walla Walla Parks and Rec Update

Pottery Studio has NEW hours! Thursday/Friday 4pm-7pm and Saturday/Sunday 11am-3pm.

• CJoy – Ages 12 and up. Cost is $11-$95.

NEW – Parks and Recreation App! Easy access to game schedules, program registration and more! Download it from your App Store/Google Play Store - Walla Walla Parks and Rec.

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, parks@wallawallawa.gov.


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