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Welcome to West Woodland

News and Events For This Week

Principal's Weekly Message
To West Woodland Families,

Smarter Balanced Assessment
Spring has sprung and testing has begun. Please call or email if you have any questions about how this is going in your child’s class. It is a new test with a new format and new requirements, so help your student relax about it, as much as possible. This first year is really a test for the test to see what works and how best to approach it. We keep track of student learning in many ways, so I am very interested to see how the Smarter Balanced Assessment aligns with what we know about the students’ levels. Stay tuned.

Testing Dates:
Smarter Balance Assessments
  • Grade 3 March 30-April 9
  • Grade 4 and 5 – April 20-May 8
Individual classes are scheduled for 4 hour blocks for math and 4 hour blocks for reading, although we do not think they will need all of this time.  Most tests are scheduled in the morning; a few happen at 1:00.  Please see your teacher for your individual class schedule and make sure your student has no outside appointments during this time.  Make-ups are difficult to schedule.  We appreciate your help in getting students to school rested, on time and ready to go…….like you do everyday. If you would like more information, please visit: http://smarterbalanced.www.seattleschools.org

Releasing the Salmon
Our friends, the salmon babies will be released at Carkeek Park on the 8th. Stop by and wish them well.
Superintendent Visits West Woodland

Superintendent Visit
Dr. Larry Nyland, our district’s superintendent came and spent just over an hour with us this week. He was able to see quite a few classes in action and sit down with Marilyn and I to discuss what makes West Woodland so unique and what makes us proud of the school. (That list is long!) The PTA presidents, Richelle and Kirsten, were able to come and talk to him about our enrollment projections for next year and why we need the district to look closely at our historical numbers and fund us for what students we feel will be here in the fall.  We also discussed funding and what our PTA is asked to pay for when the district and state should be fully funding education at each school. It was a very rich conversation and we were so glad he could come.

Proposed 2015-16 School Year Calendar (From the district website)
A draft calendar has been proposed for the 2015-16 school year and is going before the Seattle Public Schools School Board Executive Committee on April 2, 2015. It will be introduced to the board at the April 22 school board meeting and the board will take action on it May 6.

Draft important dates under consideration by the school board:
  • Sept. 9: Start of school 
  • Dec. 21-Jan 4: Winter break
  • Feb. 15-19: Mid-winter break 
  • April 11-15: Spring break 
  • June 23: Last day of school
Again, these are still draft dates until the school board votes. Upon approval (or changes and approval) this information will be updated and families will receive communications on the approved calendar.

Budget Funding for Education from AWSP (Bold and italics added by me)
If you are interested in how the state budget process is going, read on. If not, just peruse the following paragraphs. Either way, please think about writing letters to support fully funding education in the State of Washington.
Both the House and Senate 2015–17 Operating Budgets have been introduced, heard in public hearing, and debated on the floor of the House and Senate. However, the House passed its budget 51–47 on Thursday. The Senate hopes to pass theirs out the first of the week. 

Both budgets fully fund Maintenance, Supplies & Operating Costs (MSOC), reduce K–3 class sizes, and fully fund all-day kindergarten. They both include a staff mix savings due to the expected hiring of more teachers grades K–3. Elementary parent engagement coordinators, middle and high school counselors, and additional support for Transitional Bilingual Instructional Support are in both budgets too. The support for principals through the principal internship program and the Washington State Leadership Academy are included in both budgets.

$100 million is the difference between the House ($1.4 billion) and the Senate ($1.3 billion) increase in funding of K–12 education. Examples of the differences include:
  • Cost of living adjustments (COLA) for educators are included in both the House and Senator, but during the two year budget the House COLA is 4.8 percent while the Senate provides for a 3 percent increase.
  • Both propose curtail I–1351, while the House counts on a 2/3 vote to do so, the Senate sends the issue back to the voters for another vote. 
  • The House matches K–12 health and insurance benefits with other state employees, while the Senate maintains a status quo position of $768 per month. The Senate maintains Local Effort Assistance (LEA) at its current level where the House includes additional MSOC funding to be included in LEA funding.
Another major difference between the two budgets is how the increase in K–12 budget is funded. The House Democrats proposes to close tax exemptions and institute a capital gains tax of 5 percent on the 32,000 richest people in Washington. The Senate Republicans believe the McCleary funding requirements can be meet within existing resources so no new taxes are needed. To better understand the Senate R’s thinking, watch Senator Joe Fain’s (R – Auburn) 57-second video explanation of the Republican budget. Because the two sides are so far apart, Representative Moeler (D-Vancouver) doesn’t believe the 2015 legislative session will end on time.

Report Cards Sent Home Friday.

Have a fabulous, sunny weekend!

Tami Beach
Co-principal/Assistant principal

Be Wonderful! Volunteer at the Gala
As you know, our Woodland Wonderland Gala is coming up just around the corner. We need several volunteers to help with:
  • set up
  • greeting
  • bartending
  • donation collecting
  • clean up
Please consider joining our fantastic team of people who have been working so hard to plan a fun party that brings our community together to celebrate and help raise money for our terrific school!   We need you to help us make sure the party runs smoothly and our gala is a success!

Please check out a more complete list of our volunteer needs (including a brief description of the needs and time commitments: 

Volunteer at the Gala

From the District : N2N School Bell Times
School Family Partnerships recently launched its new Neighbor-to-Neighbor (N2N) program to gather valuable community, family and staff input on school bell times (helping the district determine if it should change school start times for secondary schools).

\N2N group facilitators and individuals have requested the convenience of turning in their surveys on bell times to school offices. To assist families and the community in sharing their feedback, School Family Partnerships will be sending each school two self-addressed interoffice mail envelopes you can use to collect the surveys when people bring them to your front office. Thank you in advance for helping collect these surveys. The envelopes can be mailed back on May 1. A friendly reminder to send in the envelope will be sent to school secretaries on May 1.

Should families ask, our videos and surveys on school bell times are located on our N2N website at http://neighbortoneighbor.www.seattleschools.org

Thank you in advance for your valuable assistance in helping the district gather community input on this important topic. 

Jesse Johnson
School Family Partnerships and N2N Coordinator 

West Woodland Pre-Robotics Classes
NXT-G Programming
Starting April 28th
We are accepting applications for the Spring Pre-Robotics Programming Course starting on April 28th. Applications can be submitted online through the Robotics page of the Computer Lab Website. They are also available in the computer lab or from the main office. All third and fourth grade students are eligible for the program. The Class will be limited to 16 students. Get your application in as soon as possible.
More information is available online: Computer Lab Website
Steve Sorensen
Computer Lab Manager

Please join us for West Woodland's Family Mariner's Game Day!
Sunday, April 26 at 1:10 pm at Safeco Field
Seattle Mariners vs Minnesota Twins

Tickets are $12 each. 
To purchase tickets please complete the form attached to the West Woodland Mariner's Day Flyer and return to the school office with you check made payable to 'West Woodland PTA'.

There are also flyers available in the office or contact Jim Gannon at jimandkristen383@comcast.net for more information. 

Woodland Wonderland Gala at Leif Erikson Lodge
Thank you to all of our wonderful sponsors for their contributions to the Gala.  Please join us on April 25th to enjoy the following: 

Beverage and Refreshment provided by Hilliards, Red Hook, Georgetown Brewery, Precept Wines, Old Ballard Liquor Company, and Ha! 

Food provided by El Camion, Skillet Street Food and Top Pot Donuts 

Musical entertainment of Rosie's Boyfriend and The Arrythmics

Purchase Tickets Now, or Read the FAQ

Please join the Gala team for coffee and pastries after drop off on Friday, April 10.  Gather with friends and learn about the Gala. We hope to see you there!

Art Show at Li'l Woody's - Submit by April 30th
Calling all artists! Li’l Woody’s restaurant has invited West Woodland to participate in a student art show in May. Restaurant patrons will be asked to vote on their favorite art pieces, and the school with the most votes will have their own custom hamburger added to the menu. Li’l Woody’s will donate a percentage of the proceeds to the winning school’s art program, so this is an exciting opportunity for our school! Please email Becky Ducsik at beckyducsik@icloud.com if your child would like to submit artwork for the show. The pieces should be 8x11 and need to be submitted to Becky by April 30th.

Need more info? Contact Becky Ducsik | beckyducsik@icloud.com

Woodland Park Zoo Education Programs
Woodland Park Zoo partners with West Woodland by providing a variety of programs to support student education. The programs are always changing, and often available during holiday breaks and early release days. 

Programs include Parents Night out, Scout Classes, Bug Club, and more!

Read more about each program, timing, availability and pricing

How to get SNEAKS
Are you receiving Sneaks, the emailed weekly Newsletter from West Woodland?  Can you log into the school web site:  www.westwoodlandes.seasttleschools.org?  Does your password not work?  

If you are having trouble with any of these things, the How to Get SNEAKS page will help you. It includes details instructions on how to get registered with The Source AND the West Woodland Web site (school fusion), so you can stay up to date!

I Care Stories
The first ICARE story comes from Ms. Walters in First Grade. We have an aquarium of cloud fish in our classroom. It is difficult for us to remember when to feed them.  Ren has fish at home so he offered to be the person who would make sure they got fed regularly.  This shows how he is willing to be accountable for this very important job of taking care of our class organisms.  Thank you, Ren.
Our next story comes from Mrs. Beach. Science Night was a great success and one of the highlights was the amazing clean-up crew!  Cassia and Daphne Tackett from rooms 204 and 211 stayed until the very end and helped put things away, throw away trash and get the school cleaned up and beautiful for school the next day. Thank you Cassia and Daphne! 

These are the "stories" that are read by 4th/5th grade students over the intercom on Wednesday mornings.  This is one of the many ways we work to reinforce our I CARE Values at West Woodland.

Upcoming Events
Quick Links
Contact Marie Sumpter 
(206) 252-1602
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