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June 9, 2017

A message from Dr. Traci Pierce, superintendent

Breaking Ground and Building on Success
2017 is an exciting time for Lake Washington, and June especially brings much to celebrate with our students, staff, parents and community. It is a time of growth, opportunity and success. We are breaking ground on new schools, preparing to graduate the Class of 2017, and getting ready to welcome a new class of kindergarteners in the fall: the Class of 2030! Read more of Dr. Traci Pierce’s letter.

Congratulations, graduates!

It is graduation season in LWSD. Watch our website and Facebook page for photos and videos from each graduation ceremony in the coming weeks, and congratulations to all our class of 2017 graduates!

New contract for Lake Washington School District, Lake Washington Education Association
School calendar set for next four years

The Lake Washington School District (LWSD) and the Lake Washington Education Association (LWEA) have agreed to a new contract for the next four years, the 2017-18 through 2020-2021 school years. The LWEA represents teachers in LWSD. The contract was ratified by 86.2% of the members of the LWEA in an online vote that concluded May 29. The Lake Washington School District Board of Directors voted to approve the new contract on Monday, June 5, at its regular board meeting.

As part of the contract, the two organizations negotiated the school calendar for the next four years, which will follow a similar pattern to the district’s current calendar. The primary change is the addition of a built-in snow day, beginning in the 2018-19 school year.
Read more about the new contract between LWSD and LWEA.                        

School start time survey open
For the past two years, the College and Career Readiness Task force has been studying the impacts of the new state 24 credit graduation requirements and the potential for a 7th period day for grades 9-12 and other creative ways to expand options for students in grades 9-12. The Task force recently recommended adding time to the high school day to create a 7th period in each of our high schools. The Task force has also been studying school start times. (No changes will be made before the 2018-19 school year.) The research literature describes the benefits of a later start time for high school students, including improvements in memory and learning, mental health and well-being, and overall academic achievement.

We are asking K-12 staff, parents, and high school students for their opinion on four start/dismissal time options currently under consideration. Any changes to high school start and dismissal times will require changes to elementary and middle school start and end times as well. The survey will provide four options. Survey participants will have a chance to rank the options in the order of their most preferred to least preferred choice. The survey will be open through June 30. Use this survey link to take the school start time survey.

Five LWSD students receive National Merit College-Sponsored Scholarships

3,200 distinguished students recognized nationwide

The National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) announced on Wednesday that five Lake Washington School District (LWSD) students will receive National Merit College-Sponsored Scholarships:

  • Hunter Trewin, Lake Washington H.S. – National Merit University of Alabama Scholarship
  • Stephen Fitch, Jr., Tesla STEM H.S. – National Merit Carleton College Scholarship
  • Martin Randal, Redmond H.S. – National Merit Vanderbilt University Scholarship
  • Samantha Moynihan, Eastlake H.S. – National Merit University of Southern California Scholarship
  • Siri Mellem, Redmond H.S. – National Merit St. Olaf College Scholarship

Read more about the National Merit College-Sponsored Scholarships.

District Equity Team Update

Lake Washington School District is committed to ensuring academic success for every student and to achieving its vision of Every Student Future Ready

As part of the Lake Washington’s ongoing strategic improvement efforts, the district recently finalized selections for a District Equity Team to help develop an equity plan focused on closing achievement and opportunity gaps for students. The team includes teachers, staff members, administrators and parents/community members.

Lake Washington began collecting applications for the District Equity Team in early April. All parents and community members who applied to serve on the team were then invited to attend an equity-focused linkage/dialogue session with the Board of Directors on Monday, May 22.  Twenty-three participants shared their views, perspectives, and experiences related to equity and opportunity with the Board. The information collected from linkage participants will help guide the work of the District Equity Team.

Over 100 staff, parents and community members applied to serve on the District Equity Team. This level of interest reflects the commitment of staff, parents and community to support our schools and all students. All applications were carefully reviewed and considered. The selection of participants was based on ensuring diverse representation of a wide range of experiences, perspectives and geographic locations. The team will convene later this month.

Left to right: Jon Pascal, Kirkland City Council; Dr. Traci Pierce, LWSD superintendent; Amy Walen, Kirkland Mayor; Nancy Bernard, Mark Stuart and Siri Bliesner, LWSD Board of Directors; Penny Sweet, Kirkland City Council

District breaks ground on Juanita High School project           

Lake Washington School District is building on success, our program to build new schools and rebuild old ones. On June 5, the long-awaited project to rebuild and enlarge Juanita High School broke ground. Juanita High School’s drumline provided the beat for a large crowd that included Kirkland Mayor Amy Whalen, councilmembers John Pascal and Penny Sweet, LWSD board members Mark Stuart and Siri Bliesner, current and former teachers and staff, students, parents and community members. Speakers included Dr. Traci Pierce, superintendent, retiring Principal Gary Moed, incoming Principal Kelly Clapp and next year’s ASB president, Adam Lamb.


Mr. Moed said, “Lots of great things have happened within its halls...but it’s time to say goodbye to the past with all the sentiment it holds and welcome the future.” Read more about the JHS Groundbreaking ceremony.

Check Family Access before it closes for the summer!

Make sure to check your student’s grades and other information before June 30. Access to grades, attendance, schedule and academic history will not be accessible during the summer. Due to required summer maintenance work, Skyward Family Access will not be available after June 30. (For Summer School students, grades and attendance information in Skyward Family Access and access to PowerSchool Learning will generally be available through August 3.)  PowerSchool Learning will be unavailable for all students and parents from August 4 through September 4.

School News

EAS students visit Amazon's greenhouse, get green for theirs

When Amazon’s botanists wanted to test out educational lessons, who better to give them feedback than the students from Lake Washington's Environmental and Adventure School? This Kirkland middle school uses the environment as a lens to teach a comprehensive, thematic curriculum.

Students and teachers made two visits to the Amazon greenhouse in Woodinville. Botanists used Amazon’s growing collection of exotic tropical plants to teach lessons to the kids. EAS students and teachers provided feedback after each tour. During the second visit, students also planted a living wall panel and received Venus Flytrap plants to raise at home. At the time, teacher John Hamilton mentioned that EAS has its own greenhouse and noted they were hoping to repair and upgrade it. 

Read more about EAS students' visit to Amazon's greenhouse.

Seven LWSD high school juniors to explore STEM careers through Washington Aerospace Scholars 

Seven LWSD high school juniors were selected to complete Phase II of the Washington Aerospace Scholars (WAS) Program – the Summer Residency. Students from six high schools were selected from among the talented juniors across Washington state. These students’ academic performance on the WAS Phase I curriculum qualified them for Phase II:

  • Alex Bartoletti, Lake Washington High School
  • Srikanth Chavali, Tesla STEM High School
  • Spencer Goldstein, Lake Washington High School
  • Grace Kellogg, Redmond High School
  • Max McGowan, Juanita High School
  • Adrienne Pickerill, Eastlake High School
  • Sebastian Soetomo, International Community School

Read more about the WAS Program.

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Lake Washington School District, 16250 NE 74th Street, Redmond, WA 98052

The Lake Washington School District does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, gender, marital status, creed, religion, honorably discharged veteran, military status, sexual orientation including gender expression or identity, the presence of any sensory, mental or physical disability, or the use of a trained guide dog or service animal by a person with a disability, in its programs and activities and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. Complete policy statement:

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