June 1, 2018
In this issue
Board votes 5-0 for Giurado as next superintendent Elementary students learn to turn mistakes into art
Grant will provide mental health support in grades 6-8
Board votes 5-0 for Giurado as next superintendent NewSuperintendent
"Students first, parents & community heard, educators honored"
Tony Giurado talks with a student in Kelly Minniti_s first grade classroom
Tony Giurado, Tahoma's next superintendent, talks with a first-grade student in a Cedar River Elementary classroom during a tour last week.
New Tahoma Superintendent Tony Giurado has already begun climbing a steep learning curve as a newcomer to the area and as a first-time superintendent. Guiding him are a set of principles that he has developed during his 27-year education career: Put students first; listen to parents and the community; and honor educators.

"I think the most important thing is that students are at the center of all that we do," he said. "That's at the core." He said it is apparent that Tahoma has high quality teachers, administrators and support staff who can meet students' needs. He wants to build on that success.

Giurado, 53, leaves his native Colorado and his position as Chief Academic Officer of the Mesa County Valley School District in Grand Junction, Colo., to become Tahoma's superintendent on July 1, when current Superintendent Rob Morrow retires.

The new superintendent brings an extensive administrative background to Tahoma, having worked in two large Colorado school districts in school and district leadership for 21 years. That experience will serve Tahoma well, he said.

"I've thrived throughout my career working in high-achieving environments, whether as a teacher, as a principal or as a districtwide leader," he said.

He started in education as a music teacher, after he decided that his dream of becoming a symphonic musician would not satisfy his desire to "do something that would make a difference." After a year at a prestigious music conservatory, where he attended on a full scholarship as a performance major, Giurado changed direction to focus on becoming an educator. He taught music for six years and then was recruited into administrative positions as an elementary school assistant principal and principal before moving into district-level leadership in the Jeffco and Mesa Valley school districts, where he supervised as many as 47 schools. Among his many responsibilities were implementing K-12 curriculum, monitoring school budgets, coaching and supervising school principals, assisting in School Board and community relations, and ensuring school safety.

Giurado, his wife Rosanne, and son Vincent, 15, are looking forward to exploring their new home. The family enjoys outdoor activities that include hiking, cycling, kayaking, and golf. Giurado said he and his family have looked at moving to Washington for about five years, but Tahoma is the first school district that interested him enough to apply.

"We dug in and I looked at schools, achievement data, read about the district and, of course as a family, we looked at the community, Maple Valley," he said. "everything about it just felt right."
As he studied Tahoma, Giurado said he found evidence of a school district that is forward-thinking and has high-performing schools.

"I am really passionate about, and have spent a great deal of time, studying the future and what the future looks like in the workplace, in society and in education," he said. "The school district's forward thinking and commitment, to the Future Ready vision so that our students have 21st century skills and have a plan when they graduate, aligns well with my passion and my beliefs about education and what our students need," he said.

He also applauds the district's commitment to environmental sustainability. "Our students understand the challenges around sustainability, environment and how we can work together to solve some of the challenges related to that to make sure our planet and our community have the resources they need to be sustainable for the long term," he said.

Giurado credits strong leadership and commitment, beginning with the School Board, for Tahoma's traditions of excellence. "Having a good vision, a good plan, and having stability and leadership really is critical to accomplishing great things," he said.

"The heart of success is when we ensure that every Tahoma student has a highly effective teacher who provides high quality instruction, cares about them, believes in them and inspires them to do more than they think is possible," he said. "And that every teacher be supported by a great visionary leader who collaboratively supports their teachers with resources, time for professional learning, and making sure the school can clearly focus on goals."

As incoming superintendent, Giurado said he has provided the School Board with a preliminary transition plan but has not yet had the opportunity to discuss it in detail and work collaboratively to ensure that he and the Board have the same vision. In addition to establishing a good working relationship and communication with the Board, Giurado's plan includes community outreach, providing leadership and support to district administrators, learning how the district operates, and making sure the school year begins smoothly.
Whether he is talking to community members, students or district staff, Giurado will frame his conversations around three main questions.

"There are questions I'd like to ask when I have opportunities to engage all our stakeholders," he said. "What's working well? What's working but needs improvement? The third would be what's not working and should be discontinued. I'd like to do that and develop multiple engagement opportunities in the first three or four months."

Answers to those questions will help shape changes and improvements that are focused on optimizing learning opportunities for students.

"I have a big learning curve," he said. "I have a lot to learn from all of our students and staff, board of education, our administrators, parents and community." He is confident that together we can build upon our strengths and valued traditions to put each student on the path to lifelong personal success.

Tony Giurado
Tony Giurado, who has been the chief academic officer of Mesa Valley County School District in Grand Junction, Colo., will be Tahoma's next superintendent. Here, Giurado speaks to a panel of parents, community members and staff during a day of final interviews before the School Board made its decision.
Track & field, golf bring home trophies from state tourneysTrophiesState
track and field team
The Tahoma High School girls track and field team won first place in the state for the second year running.
Tahoma High School's girls track and field team won the Washington State 4A championship for the second year in a row over the weekend at Mount Tahoma High School in Tacoma. Together, the boys and girls brought home first place finishes in six events and broke four school records.

"We graduated several key athletes last year and knew this year would be a little tougher to repeat as champions," coach Jeff Brady said. "However, with such an amazing coaching staff and dedicated athletes, we exceeded the point total of 91 points last year and won with 93 points this year."

Freshman Adaji Osaro-Igwe, who was on the team that won first in the 4x100 meters relay with a time of 46.77, said it has been a fun but challenging year. She added that it was nice to work with top-level athletes to learn how they train and prepare themselves for meets and practice.

"It was fun because my coaches and teammates were nice and supportive of me. The challenging part was the transition between middle school and high school track. High school track is more rigorous and the workouts are sometimes difficult and tiring, but it really paid off," Osaro-Igwe said.

She also won second in state in the 200 meters with a time of 24.55, and seventh in state in the 100 meters with a time of 12.40, and noted that she saw a difference from the beginning of season to the end thanks to focus and hard work.

"Being able to PR and place at state was nice because I really worked hard for the wins that I got. Winning my races and participating in relays was a good way to bond with the other athletes and make good connections," Osaro-Igwe said.

Junior Alisha Wilson, who took first in state in the long jump (earning a PR and school record with a distance of 19 feet, 2 inches) was also on the 4x100 relay that took first in state, and placed second in state in the 100-meters with a time of 12.03, also emphasized that the hard work paid off.

"I felt really accomplished and proud of myself," Wilson said. "It made me realize how important it is to always be competing and have a positive mindset. I would say the team felt a lot ... closer, as we were all competing for the same goal (state champs) and we really worked together, lifting each other up and supporting each and every one one of our teammates."

Other first place finishes included: Zachary Klobutcher, first place in pole vault, 15 feet; Aliya Wilson, first place in 100 meters and first place in 200 meters; Alaina Brady, first place in 100 meter hurdles with a time of 14.16; 4x100 relay team including Brady, Aliya and Alisha Wilson and Osaro-Igwe with a time of 46.77. For complete results from Tahoma, click here: http://wiaa.com/results/track/2018/2A3A4A/index.htm

Boys golf
The Tahoma High School boys golf team brought home the second place trophy from the Washington state 4A championships at the Canyon Lakes course in Kennewick last week.

"Colt Sherrell and Parker Kneadler were two seniors looking to make a big impact at the tournament this year after playing four years together at Tahoma," coach Dave Reynoldson said. "Colt was at the top of his game shooting a total of 5 under par for the tournament, finishing alone at second place, a great achievement in itself. Parker was solid both days, with 76 each day leading us to our top finish ever for Tahoma boys golf as a team."

"Luke Sherrell also scored well qualifying for day 2 after shooting a 74 the first day. It was one of my most satisfying moments as a coach watching Colt and Parker raise the trophy together after so much work for so many years together," Reynoldson said.

Girls golf
For the girls golf team, junior Abby Goodell and senior Emma Adkins played in the state championship at Sun Willows course in Pasco, and nearly made the cut score of 83 to proceed to the second round of play.

Goodell is a junior and three-time state participant who posted her best state score, an 85, this year, coach Tracy Krause said.

"Abby is an excellent player and even better person. Under her leadership, the girls team was fourth at districts this season. We are excited to have Abby back for her senior year next season," Krause said.

Adkins is a senior and first-time state participant who shot her best score during the state qualifier and then promptly beat that score at state, shooting an 88.

"Over the years, we have seen very few young golfers achieve that amount of growth that Emma has seen in the last four years. Her leadership and drive will be missed," he said.

The Bears fastpitch softball team traveled to Spokane to compete in the state championship last weekend. The team played three games, losing to Monroe 8-0, then prevailing over Auburn Mountainview 3-1 before falling to Newport High School 10-6.

"This season has gone great," fastpitch coach Christina Millan said before the district tournament. "Although we lost a few games, it provided us a great foundation for growth and motivation. We finished the season undefeated and took first place overall in the NPSL for the second year in a row."

The Bears captured the North Puget Sound League by going undefeated and assembling an overall regular season record of 20-3. Unfortunately, Tahoma lost in the first round of regional play to a red-hot Richland Bombers team, ending their playoff hopes.

Courtesy photo
The Tahoma Bears boys golf team with their second place trophy.

Courtesy photo
Emma Adkins and Abby Goodell represented the girls golf team at state.

Elem. art students learn to turn mistakes into artArtElementary
Students from Jennifer Mako's third grade class work on art depicting vegetable gardens. Art teacher Jamie Wittman showed the students how to use a batik technique to explore texture, with crayon and watercolors. 
Drew S.
Fourth-grader Drew S. shows his "Beautiful Oops" project, which was based off the irregular scrap of yellow paper at the center of the portrait.
As students in Jamie Wittman's art class at Glacier Park Elementary work on drawing and painting a vegetable garden, music plays in the background. Some groups of students talk about the assignment while they work, and related topics such as what types of vegetables they've tried.

"I've never had a radish," one student comments. "You haven't?" a classmate replies, surprised.

At other tables, the conversations center around "Star Wars," or a game played at recess, all while the classmates continue to add onions, potatoes, tomatoes and carrots to their paper gardens, or bring them to life in watercolors, using a batik method to learn about texture. After drawing their gardens in pencil, students trace each line in crayon, and the wax in the crayons resists the water paints, resulting in brightly colored art with high contrast. The artwork will be added to the students' portfolios when finished.

The wall decor in Wittman's classroom includes a display designed to inspire students to have confidence even while making mistakes, and this quote from Henry Matisse: "Creativity takes courage." Before students arrive, the tables sit ready with pencils and crayons in small pails. Near the sink, stacks of paint trays and bunches of brushes are waiting to be used.

Students in kindergarten through fifth grade at each elementary school went to art class for half the year, and spent the remainder of the year in STEM class. (To read about STEM, click here: bit.ly/TSDelemSTEM ) This year's art curriculum has focused on the elements of art: line, color, shape, form, space, texture and value. Students experimented with a variety of mediums, including oil pastels, chalk pastels and watercolors. One lesson was based off Barney Satlzberg's picture book, "The Beautiful Oops." In that lesson, students were given a smudge or a scrap to work with and were asked to create a piece using that as their starting point.

"We did that kindergarten through fifth grade, and everybody loved it," said Wittman, who taught at Glacier Park and Rock Creek this year, while Tatjana Henninger and Mary Davies taught at the other schools.

Glacier Park fourth-grader Drew S. said the "Beautiful Oops" was a good project. He thumbed through his portfolio and pulled out his artwork to share.

"It's a mistake, and if you make a mistake, it's OK. You can make it like it didn't happen," said Drew, who is in Cindi Bennison's class.

Wittman gave him an irregular scrap of yellow paper to base his project around. Drew used it as the starting point for the portrait of a man, who he named "Greg Juan Bill."

Henninger said the "Beautiful Oops" unit was her favorite one to teach this year. "This lesson encouraged problem solving and creativity. I loved seeing the outcome of this project, and often referred back to this experience when a student was discouraged by a 'mistake' in their artwork."

Another lesson asked students to create a tree and demonstrated that each artist is unique.

"Even though I'm teaching a specific lesson, I love to see how different kids will change it or modify it to make it their own," Wittman said. "I am happy to work with the kids so that they can all be successful in here. ... We're working on 'Growth Mindset.'"

The "Growth Mindset" concept has been written about extensively in a number of books, and essentially means that making mistakes is part of the learning process -- when students believe they can improve, their understanding of methods and topics deepens. It's based in brain research that shows neurons in our brains make connections quicker if we practice something, ask more questions and take on challenges.

At the end of their semester in art, students are asked to look through their portfolio of work and select one project to revise, reinforcing the idea that while they should always strive to create quality work, it's also always possible to review and improve a first draft.

"Our art teachers have been absolutely fabulous," said Dawn Wakeley, Executive Director of Teaching and Learning. "They spent many days last summer working on a preliminary scope and sequence and initial lessons but the team has had to do a lot of learning through experience. The teachers will spend more time this summer working on our year two curriculum as we continue to refine and expand the experiences for students. Our students are lucky to have such rich experiences. We so appreciate our community for supporting these sorts of experiences for our students."

Working on their gardens, students from Jennifer Mako's third grade class explained what they enjoy about art and what they have learned.

"I like (the batik technique) a lot because it kind of shows a lot of texture, and it kind of makes it look like a real garden," Mara J. said.

Classmate Avery B. agreed: "It's fun because you get to experience real art, like this, say," she said, gesturing to her piece. "I haven't drawn vegetables in a long time. And, it's fun to be with your friends," Avery added.

Principal Shelly Gaston said the new elementary art program has been "amazing."

"Each time I visit (Wittman's) classroom, the students are actively engaged and excited about the project they are completing," Gaston said. "I have been especially impressed with Jamie's focus on growth mindset. She has helped her students see that they all have the potential to be artists!"

Grant to provide mental health support in grades 6-8MentalHealth
This fall, Summit Trail and Maple View middle school students will benefit from added mental health screening and supports, along with middle school students from more than 40 schools in King County, thanks to a grant from Best Starts for Kids. Countywide, $12.6 million will be invested over three years to expand Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Services (SBIRT) and will reach as many as 35,000 students each school year. Best Starts for Kids is King County's comprehensive funding strategy for supporting healthy child development, and invests an average of $65 million per year in total to support families and children.

Tahoma received a $280,000 grant designed to help provide mental health support and help students cope with stress and social pressure. There is potential for the grant to extend two additional years.

"Middle school is a unique and exciting time of exploration, identity formation, and development. Coupled with this is a vulnerability to mental health issues and at-risk behavior. We are so excited to have additional support to help identify students early, assist them to capitalize on strengths, connect them to resources and in turn, increase protective factors in their lives," Summit Trail counselor Naomi Whylie said. "Additional services at this pivotal time can greatly influence one's present and future success, health and happiness."

The Tahoma grant was developed with input from many stakeholders over a three-month period, said Dawn Wakeley, Executive Director of Teaching and Learning.

"Our counselors, building administrators, district leadership, and community partners all had such wonderful ideas on ways to provide new supports for our students," Wakeley said. "Our middle level team is eager to begin this work in the fall, and we have some wonderful beginning pieces in place at both the building and community level that we can build upon."

The grant will help pay for a mental health and wellness coordinator at each middle school. Plans also call for:
  • Continued professional development and coaching on implementation of Life Skills curriculum in grades 6-8 including wellness concepts.
  • Use of assessment data to refine integration of health and wellness concepts with the fitness curriculum.
  • Training for teachers in trauma informed practices and mental health strategies.
  • Development of a training program for mentors in collaboration with the Maple Valley Community Center.
  • Development of a Walking for Wellness STRETCH class that will include peer to peer support as well as weekly mentor Walk and Talk support.
  • SBIRT calls for three to four meetings with students, at least one of which will include the student's parent or guardian. The meetings help students identify and access their strengths to support areas of concern, as well as coaching to help increase the student's capacity to problem solve. If additional supports are needed, then a referral would occur to any one of a wide range of options from participation in a school club or activity, placing the student in Walking for Wellness or Stress Reduction/Mindfulness STRETCH classes, assigning a community mentor or referral to mental health or drug/alcohol services in the community.

"Tahoma staff is dedicated to quality learning for every student, every day. Unfortunately, events occur in our students' lives that make it difficult to learn. These events, such as loss of housing, divorce, loss of a family member, illness or injury, can change a young person's world and way of learning," Maple View counselor Betty Bernstein said. "This grant will help us to identify students' needs and find ways of supporting them so they can get the most out of their education and lead healthy, productive lives. What a great opportunity to serve our students, their families, and build a stronger community!"

For more information about Best Starts for Kids, click here.

School Board newsRobMapleLeaf
Morrow receives Golden Maple Leaf Award
maple leaf award
Superintendent Rob Morrow was presented with the Golden Maple Leaf Award on Tuesday.
Tahoma Superintendent Rob Morrow received the Golden Maple Leaf Award from the City of Maple Valley in a surprise presentation at Tuesday's School Board meeting. The annual award is given by the City Council in recognition of significant positive contributions to the community.
Mayor Sean P. Kelly and council members Linda Johnson, Erin Weaver, Les Burberry, Syd Dawson, Linda Olson, and City Manager Laura Philpot presented the award to Morrow and took turns reading a proclamation in his honor that sets June 9 as Rob Morrow Day. Deputy Mayor Dana Parnello could not attend but signed the proclamation. Morrow also will be Grand Marshal in the Maple Valley Days Parade on June 9.

The proclamation cites Morrow's service to the school district and community during his 37-year career as teacher, principal and superintendent. It specifically mentions Morrow's role in establishing the Operation Veterans Remembrance program for ninth-grade students, who place U.S. flags on every grave at Tahoma National Cemetery each Memorial Day; his participation and backing of a collaborative exercise with police, firefighters and other first responders to practice intruder and lockdown procedures that has drawn national praise; and his leadership in establishing a task force to address mental health and chemical dependence issues among young people in the Maple Valley and Tahoma School District area. Morrow will retire June 30 after serving four years as superintendent.

School board taps reserve funds for buses, technology
The Tahoma School Board approved two proposals, May 29, that use reserve funds to maintain critical technology and transportation needs.

The board authorized purchase of six school buses, using $300,000 in state depreciation funding and $500,000 from the district's fund balance reserve. Three buses will be equipped with luggage compartments that can be used to transport equipment for sports teams or marching band. The purchase makes it possible to replace several older buses now used as spares.

The decision to use reserve funds came as a result of the failure of a $2 million bus levy in February, which would have provided funds to purchase more than a dozen new buses to refresh and enlarge the fleet.

The School Board also approved the use of fund balance reserves to maintain district classroom technology next school year, though at a reduced level because of the failure of February's technology levy. Fund-balance dollars will not replace all of the funding from the technology levy. There will be fewer technical support positions and replacement of computers and other devices will be delayed in order to cut spending by more than $1 million.
Technology spending will be $1,375,992 for the 2018-2019 school year, which is more than $1 million less than what is currently allocated. There will be a review of the district's technology model next fall that will serve as a guide for classroom technology beyond next school year.

In other business May 29, the School Board:
  • Approved the employment contract for incoming Superintendent Tony Giurado, who will begin working on July 1. The vote was 4-0 because board member Bill Clausmeyer was absent due to a family emergency.
  • Approved budgets for the associated student bodies of Tahoma High School, Summit Trail Middle School and Maple View Middle School.
  • Held first readings and reviews for a comprehensive music program that serves grades kindergarten-5 and for a new Spanish curriculum for grades 9-12.
  • Approved renewing the district's membership in the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association.
  • Approved School Board targets for 2018-2019.
  • Conducted the annual review of Policy and Procedure 3207 that prohibits harassment, intimidation and bullying.
  • Reviewed revised procedure 3241P regarding classroom management, discipline and corrective action.
  • Received the monthly finance report from Assistant Superintendent Lori Cloud, who said spending across the district is more than $4 million below what was budgeted, due to reductions and limitations put in place after the February levy failures. She said spending is on the rise after the limitations were removed following passage of the April 25 Educational Programs and Operations levy.

Details are available on BoardDocs, which is linked to the Tahoma School District website under "Our District," then "School Board."

Spotlight on Shadow LakeSpotlightShadowLake
Field opens to cheers from students, staff
Students and staff members at Shadow Lake Elementary cheer after Cindy Darcy, project manager and purchasing and risk agent for the district, cuts the ribbon for the opening of the play field Friday morning. The field features artificial turf called ForeverLawn. The installation of this all-weather turf solves a longstanding problem of the field being frequently unusable due poor drainage and soil conditions. The project was paid for using funds from the 2013 construction bond measure. 
Ninth-graders place 40K flags for Memorial DayMemorialDay
Freshmen Logan Trudel and Luke Watkinson work together to place flags in front of columbaria at Tahoma National Cemetery.

Flags at Tahoma National Cemetery
Tahoma students placed nearly 40,000 flags last Thursday as part of Operation Veterans Remembrance.

Tahoma High School ninth-graders placed nearly 40,000 American flags at gravesites as part of Operation Veterans Remembrance May 24. Each May for the past 16 years, students travel to Tahoma National Cemetery before Memorial Day to honor those who have served in the United States military.

"I cannot think of a more appropriate and fitting student outreach for Memorial Day than placing American flags on individual veterans' gravesites," said Tahoma teacher Cary Collins, who started the project with teacher Todd Baker. "Not only does that solemn act honor and pay tribute to the veterans who served our nation in our Armed Forces, it also connects young people to the service and sacrifices of our veterans."

Last Thursday morning, a line of school buses pulled into the cemetery and stopped along the main drive to let students out to place flags. Working in pairs and teams, the 600 members of the freshman class placed one flag at each columbarium, which is a vertical row of burial niches, as well as at each individual gravesite marker and headstone throughout the cemetery. In about one hour, the work was complete. The flags will remain in place throughout the weekend before students return on Tuesday to remove them.

"Students assist each other collaboratively to accomplish the mission and they see how teamwork and cooperation are vital to the success of any project. They are involved in a project that is larger than themselves but also in which the efforts of each individual student is vital to the overall achievement of the goal," Collins said. "Through the curriculum that we teach, students understand that outreach to veterans and their family members does not end with the funeral, but is an ongoing commitment of our citizenry to recognize and honor military service and also provide for the ongoing needs of military families."

Freshman Sam Miller found his great uncle's columbarium just as he started to place flags. While Miller knew that his uncle was buried at the cemetery, he wasn't sure exactly where, he said.

Classmate Faith Stredwick said that she appreciates the project.

"I think it's great that we have an opportunity to respect the veterans," Stredwick said. "I look forward to when my siblings have the opportunity to participate."

Working together in another row, Logan Trudel and Luke Watkinson echoed Stredwick's gratitude.

"I think it's a really nice thing to be doing for all these people who fought for us," Watkinson said.

Trudel added: "It's our way of respecting them."

Bellevue resident Barbara Grobler was at the cemetery to visit her father and mother's graves, and also in hopes of seeing her grandson, Jonah Grobler, who was helping place flags.

"I'm so impressed," said Grobler, whose father, William Mackey, was a U.S. Marine. "It's a wonderful awareness for these children who don't always have this opportunity. ... I'm so glad. It just gives you hope."

News BriefsNewsBriefs
Gently used book drive for food bank library
Pamela Jewett
Former Tahoma teacher Pamela Jewett created "The Book Stop Corner" at the Maple Valley Food Bank so that children of food bank clients can select a book to take home when they visit.

Students, families and staff are invited to donate gently used or new children's books to a new service at the Maple Valley Food Bank. Former first grade teacher Pamela Jewett has created "The Book Stop Corner" at Maple Valley Food Bank & Emergency Services. Families that use the food bank can choose free books from The Book Stop Corner to keep as their own.

Those who would like to donate may bring books to any elementary school or the two middle schools during the week of June 4. (The high school already completed a book drive for this project). To donate, look for the colorful boxes created by local Lions Club cubs in the libraries at the two middle schools; or in the main office at each elementary building. There is also a box in the lobby of the district office.

Parents: Please check your student's cafeteria account
The end of the school year is approaching and we are asking parents to ensure their child's cafeteria account has sufficient funds.

Starting on Monday, June 4, students must have sufficient funds in their cafeteria account or must bring cash or a check to pay for meals. Charging of meals is not allowed. We will offer students who do not have a positive fund balance a courtesy snack at breakfast and lunch. The courtesy snack includes a cheese sandwich and milk. We will continue to serve regular meals at no charge to students who are eligible for meal benefits.

Parents may pay online and view account balances at https://wa-tahoma.intouchreceipting.com/. Parents may view their child's cafeteria account balance on Skyward. If there are funds remaining in the account at the end of the school year, they will be carried over into the new school year. Students who are graduating or moving out of the district can claim surplus funds or donate them to a special account that is designated to assist students who cannot pay for meals. Please contact Nutrition Services for details.

For more information about cafeteria charges and how to access online information click here: http://bit.ly/TSDonlinePaymentTips. Parents can also visit the Nutrition Services web page or call Nutrition Services at 425-413-3450.

Also, please note that meal benefits expire each year, so if your child receives free or reduced price lunch, remember to reapply at the beginning of next school year (the benefit carries over for September and the very beginning of October, but the applications take time to process, so please reapply in September).

Dismissal times, summer EEP information announced
Here are important times and dates for the end of the school year:
  • Last day for seniors: Wednesday, June 13
  • Graduation: Thursday, June 14, 7 p.m., White River Amphitheatre
  • Last day of school dismissal for Tahoma High School: Wednesday, June 20, 10:40 a.m.
  • Last day of school dismissal for the middle schools: Wednesday, June 20, 11 a.m.
  • Last day of school dismissal for Glacier Park, Lake Wilderness, Shadow Lake: Noon.
  • Last day of school dismissal for Cedar River, Rock Creek, Tahoma Elementary: 12:30 p.m.
  • EEP: After school care ends at 6:30 p.m. on June 20. There is no care available June 21 or 22. Summer program begins at Lake Wilderness at 6 a.m. on June 25. There is no care available on Aug. 20 or Sept. 3.

Little Free Library opens at SLES
Little Free Library
Tiger families pulled together earlier this year to donate to the Little Free Library project that PTA vice president Jamie Fairbanks organized. Now open and stocked, the stand-alone book stop outside the school has a selection of volumes for students to read and love, with no expected timeline or due dates looming. Fairbanks said earlier this year that she wanted to provide additional ways to help get books into the hands of young children, and to remove barriers such as due dates that can make borrowing books stressful for some families.

Senior class gifts new Bear statue to high school
New bear statue
The graduating class of 2018 purchased this new Bear statue for the high school. It's traditional for each class to give a gift to the school commemorating their time as Tahoma students. Last year's gift was a copy of the school fight song displayed on a large sign that hangs in the gym at the new school.

Community helps employees "stuff the bus" for food bank
The annual "Stuff the Bus" food drive organized by Tahoma School District classified employees collected 2,030 pounds of food and supplies, along with $1,077 in donations for the Maple Valley Food Bank & Emergency Services. Held at the Maple Valley QFC on May 5, the event invited community members to bring donations, which were collected in a school bus and delivered to the food bank.

"Your festive, high-energy event also raises community awareness of our mission and our needs," Executive Director Dan Lancaster said in a letter. Lancaster noted that the effort helped during a time of year that traditionally is low in donations.

The food bank distributes more than 80,000 pounds of food per month, along with financial aid for utility disconnects, eviction notices, medical expenses and other emergencies. Of the people the agency helps, 53 percent are children and senior citizens.

Parents, students invited to showing of "Screenagers"
Screenagers graphic
Students, parents and guardians are invited to a free community showing of the movie "Screenagers: Growing Up in the Digital Age," at 7 p.m. on June 4 in the performing arts center at Tahoma High School.

In "Screenagers," a family takes a personal approach into the vulnerable corners of family life, exploring struggles about social media, video games, academics and internet addiction. Through poignant and unexpectedly funny stories, along with surprising insights from authors, psychologists and brain scientists, "Screenagers" reveals how tech time impacts kids' development and offers solutions on how adults can empower kids to best navigate the digital world and find balance.

To view a trailer, go to www.screenagersmovie.com.

To register for your free seat, click here: http://bit.ly/TSDscreenagers

This movie is recommended for students (grades 3-12) and parents. Please note that there is no childcare and the movie may not keep the attention of young children. The running time is 1 hour, 10 minutes. Seating begins at 6:30. A discussion will follow the movie viewing.

This event is sponsored by the Tahoma Schools Foundation.

Incoming sixth-graders need proof of Tdap
Parents and guardians of incoming sixth-grade students received an email reminder about the requirement for the Tdap vaccine for students ages 11 and older. Beginning on July 1, 2017, children attending sixth grade are required to show proof of Tdap vaccination for entry into sixth grade, unless the student is younger than 11 years old on the first day of school or has previously received a Tdap vaccination. This is different from the Dtap vaccines that were administered prior to attending kindergarten.

If you can complete the form before the end of the school year, please submit it to the nurse at your child's current school. Or, if you complete the form after the end of the school year, please submit it before the first day of school to the middle school that your child will attend.

For the form, click here: http://bit.ly/TSDtdapImmunization

Community invited to June 6 Tahoma Trade Show
Tahoma High School marketing students host this year's Tahoma Trade Show in the high school commons and west parking lot, where they will represent local and national companies to promote products and services.
The show provides students with valuable learning opportunities in marketing and business practices. More than 120 display booths will be set up by students, who will offer information and product samples as part of their marketing efforts.

The show is from 6-8 p.m. on June 6. Parking is available in the west parking lot, adjacent to the school's athletic fields.

Tickets remain for Brandi Carlile fundraising concert June 5
A few tickets remain for the rescheduled Brandi Carlile Concert to benefit the Tahoma Schools Foundation. The concert will be in the performing arts center at Tahoma High School on Tuesday, June 5 at 7:30 p.m. To purchase tickets, please go to the Brown Paper Tickets website.

Tahoma is hiring!
The school district has immediate openings for bus drivers, support personnel and substitute positions. Free training is offered to bus-driving candidates and there will be opportunities to move quickly from substitute positions to regular bus routes. The school district will have open driving positions this summer, due to attrition caused by drivers who plan to retire or relocate.

For a complete listing of job openings and to complete an online application, please go to https://tahomajobs.hrmplus.net. If you have questions, please contact Tahoma Human Resources at 425-413-3406.

Coming up in Bear CountryBearCountry
FRIDAY , June 1
Last early release Friday, districtwide
Tahoma Elementary PTO carnival, 5-8 p.m., TES

MONDAY, June 4
Book drive, collecting gently used & new children's books for the food bank, each elementary and middle school.
Cedar River Elementary School book fair, June 4-8, CRES

Cedar River Celebration of Learning, 6:30 p.m., CRES

Glacier Park PTSA Carnival, 5:30 p.m., GPES
Tahoma Tradeshow, 6-8 p.m., THS commons and parking lot

FRIDAY, June 8
Full-day Friday, districtwide

Last day of school for seniors
Tahoma Elementary spring choir concert, 7 p.m., TES

Tahoma High School graduation, 7 p.m., White River Amphitheatre

FRIDAY, June 15
Full-day Friday, districtwide

Last day of school, districtwide

What's for lunch?LunchMenu

The Tahoma School District does not discriminate in any programs or activities on the basis of sex, race, creed, religion, color, national origin, age, veteran or military status, sexual orientation, gender expression or identity, disability, or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. The following employees have been designated to handle questions and complaints of alleged discrimination: 

Title IX Officer
Director of Human Resources
25720 Maple Valley Highway
Maple Valley, WA 98038
ADA Coordinator
Director of Human Resources
25720 Maple Valley Highway
Maple Valley, WA 98038
Section 504 Coordinator
Director of Special Services
25720 Maple Valley Highway
Maple Valley, WA 98038
Tahoma Matters staff Wendy Castleman: wcastlem@tahomasd.us
 Tahoma School District | 425-413-3400 | www.tahomasd.us