Family and Community News | Jan. 22, 2023

Beyond the Bell, Club Beyond after-school program registration opens Jan. 23

Tacoma Public Schools and community partners are once again offering Beyond the Bell activities for students in grades K-5 and Club Beyond activities for students in grades 6-8.

Registration for session three opens Monday, Jan. 23, on the Compass: TPS Family App. Session three runs from Feb. 21 to April 21.

Preview programs 

Log into your Compass: TPS Family App account and visit the activities page to see what options are available before registration opens. Only the programs at your child's school and for your child's grade will be visible to you. 

You can also visit your school's website to see the programs your school offers. (Find listings under the "Programs and Activities" tab.)

Grades K-5: Flexible pricing

When you register, you will see three payment options per session. If you are not sure what your family is qualified for, please select what you have qualified for in the past or select the best option based on your family’s current need.

  • $96 per activity
  • Qualify for reduced-priced lunch: $48 per activity
  • Qualify for free lunch: $0 per activity

Grades 6-8: Free programs

Club Beyond programs are FREE for middle school students thanks to a host of community funding partners including City of Tacoma, Greentrike, Metro Parks Tacoma, Pierce County, Tacoma Creates, Tacoma Public Schools and private philanthropy.


Tacoma Flex registration open now for high school students

Tacoma high schoolers can increase the flexibility in their schedules by taking two classes online, in addition to completing the rest of their classes in person at their school.

Working with Tacoma Online, students can take up to two online courses at the beginning and/or end of their school day through Tacoma Flex. All remote courses will be delivered by Tacoma teachers and work through the district’s Edgenuity learning management platform.

Students can work with their school counselors to enroll in Tacoma Flex. Students should complete the Tacoma Flex course request form by Feb. 15.

Why choose Tacoma Flex?

Tacoma Flex is an ideal opportunity for students who have jobs or family commitments that the traditional in-person school schedule does not allow for. It also gives the flexibility to support student choice and course offerings that may not be accessible in existing schedules.


Community circles build student confidence and classroom culture

“What do you like about your school?”

“What’s your favorite animal?”

“What’s one thing you want your class to know about you?” 

Our schools find that asking kids simple questions every day yields important results both for their academic performance and social emotional learning.  

They do it in “community circles,” a signature practice of Tacoma’s Whole Child work. In circles, students get to know each other a little bit more every day, building their confidence and eventually creating a safe space to thrive and feel connected to their school community. If they’re struggling on any given day, they hope is that feel comfortable enough to ask for help. 

Community circles can be practiced any day, but take a look now, during Whole Child Month, at a how Reed Elementary runs circles for its 5th graders.  


Willie Stewart Academy gets new home

Workers are putting the final touches on the new Willie Stewart Academy (WSA) school, located in downtown Tacoma at 9th and Broadway. Later this month, technology, furniture and supplies will arrive at the new building just in time for staff and students to move into their new spaces Feb. 3.

The project is a full renovation of the ground floor to include classrooms, student gathering areas, offices, meeting rooms, restrooms, and a staff breakroom and kitchen.

This work will complete and bring to life the school district’s vision for the building in the heart of Tacoma’s downtown.


Check February school calendar updates

Please note the upcoming schedule for students, including no school for students in grades 6-12 on Feb. 3.

  • Friday, Feb. 3: No school for students in grades 6-12 due to semester break
  • All grades in Bryant and Wainwright will have school Feb. 3, as they follow the elementary schedule
  • IDEA/SAMi/SOTA families should view their school calendar for additional days off
  • Thursday, Feb. 16: Regular school day for all students and staff
  • Friday, Feb. 17: No school for all students; staff report for Data Day
  • Monday, Feb. 20: Schools and district offices closed for Presidents Day.

How to help your child deal with "thinking traps"

Our thoughts impact how we feel and how we behave. What we tell ourselves about a situation affects how we feel and what we do. Sometimes our interpretation of a situation can get distorted, and we only focus on the negative aspects.

These automatic thoughts and assumptions are sometimes called “thinking traps.”

Take a look at common thinking traps and how to help your child work through them.  


Tacoma Public Schools | | 253-571-1000 |


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