LWSD News from the Schools, March 21, 2011

LWSD students reach out to those in need after Japan earthquake and tsunami

Schools around the district are planning events or holding coin drives to collect money for Japan earthquake and tsunami relief efforts. Here are details about a few of those drives:

  • Two sixth grade boys, Zach Manao and Baptiste DeBuire, are leading a coin drive for the Red Cross at Bell Elementary. They talked about their plans with Principal Curtis Anderson on Friday, prepared a PowerPoint and began presenting to classes around the school on Monday. The drive will end on Thursday, March 17.
  • Rose Hill Elementary is holding a penny drive called “Pennies for Japan.” Sixth graders led an all-school assembly on Thursday explaining that the school will be collecting pennies from March 21-25. Students will collect pennies in large jugs all week and the sixth graders will collect the donations each day and bring them to the office. At the end of the week, Rose Hill El. will donate their pennies to the Red Cross.
  • Students at Evergreen Junior High had a chance to “Chew for Charity.” The Leadership students came up with the idea that any student who donated to the Red Cross to support the earthquake and tsunami victims in Japan would be able to chew gum in school, demonstrating their participation and contribution. The Leadership students identified the slogan as a way of involving all students at a very accessible level, making it fun as well as supporting the message of contributing to others and that “even a small donation” can help. This campaign took place Tuesday through Thursday (March 15-17) and the school raised $2443.02.
  • Between March 16-25, each class at Rush Elementary is collecting money to be sent to a school or children’s program in the disaster area. In addition, students and staff members are making origami paper cranes to send with their collected donations. They hope to make at least one crane for each student and staff member – about 525 cranes. To get to their goal, many third through sixth grade students are using their lunch recesses to make the cranes.
  • A group of fourth grade students at Audubon Elementary have created a donation drive at the school during the week of March 21-25, complete with advertising posters and morning announcements. The money collected will go to the Red Cross. The students involved are Jamie Pippin, Anna Captain, Michalle Dmitrovsky, Adrian Gomez, and Vivian Gray.


Student receives scholarship for Spanish immersion program

Elena Plenefisch, a ninth grade Spanish 2 student of Rona Chumbook at Kamiakin Junior High, has received a full tuition scholarship to attend a two-week Spanish immersion program this summer at the Concordia Language Villages in Minnesota. Only 10 students in the country received the scholarship out of many applicants.

Applicants for the scholarship had to be in grades 8, 9 or 10 this year and have received medal placement in last year's National Spanish Exam sponsored by the AATSP (American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese). The exam last year for secondary students drew over 100,000 total participants nationwide. Elena scored in the 96th percentile, earning a gold medal for her performance.

To qualify, Elena had to submit a DVD with an interview conducted by her teacher in Spanish, write an essay to address what it means to be a global citizen and why studying Spanish is important, submit a transcript, and include two letters of recommendation.

Mann Elementary teacher selected as a 2011 Earth Hero at School

Marie Hartford, a fifth grade teacher at Horace Mann Elementary has been selected as a 2011 Earth Hero at School. The Earth Heroes at School Program celebrates King County students, teachers, staff, and volunteers who implement projects at their school or beyond to protect our environment. Marie received a formal letter of congratulations from King County Executive Dow Constantine informing her of her selection. She was also invited to a recognition ceremony that will be held Thursday, April 14 from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Community Center at Mercer View on Mercer Island. Marie was nominated for this award by John Schmeid and Aaron Feik who she works with on an environmental project called Brightwater (offering environmental education), as well as by Megan Spaulding, the principal at Mann.

LWHS and RHS students compete at Northwest Orchestra Festival

The Redmond High School Chamber Orchestra placed second in the Chamber Orchestra division of the Northwest Orchestra Festival at Mt. Hood Community College in Gresham, Ore., during the first weekend in March. RHS students Koyo Kim, Rachel Kim and Kevin Parker won the Ensemble Division with an extremely rare perfect score. In addition, the Lake Washington High School String Orchestra placed fourth out of 13 string orchestras.


DECA Students shine at State Career Development Conference, move to Internationals

DECA students from Eastlake, Lake Washington and Redmond High Schools were shining stars at the State Career Development Conference, where they competed against 3400 other students. These students will move onto compete at the International Career Development Conference (ICDC) in Orlando, Fla., at the end of April. There will be over 13,000 students competing at this level.

Eastlake High School:

  • Midori Ng (junior) – second place overall in Ad Campaign and third place overall in Buying and Merchandising Operations Research (Double ICDC Qualifier)


  • Alaina Hartley (sophomore) - second place overall in Principles of Marketing


  • Rebecca Burney (senior), Ally Britain (sophomore), and Nicole McKernan (sophomore) - Top 32 Finalist - Chapter Awards Project


Lake Washington High School:

  • Riley Rataushk (senior) – first place in Employment Acquisition
  • Camille Worsech (junior) – third place in Marketing Management
  • Nathan Brand (senior) and Kevin Middeton (senior) – fourth place in Marketing Communication Team Decision Marketing Event
  • Kate Bebee (junior) – sixth place in Principals of Marketing

Redmond High School:

  • Kelly Weiss (senior), Caroline Armijo (senior), and Charlie Mroz (senior) - first place for their Creative Marketing Project with Eddie Bauer
  • Joey Costello (senior) and Sam Notarianni (junior) - second place with their Creative Marketing Project for Foot Zone (they were also sub-category winners in Financial Analysis Team)
  • Paul Cretu (senior) - third place in Accounting Applications (He also wrote the manual that earned RHS Gold Certification for the store for the fourth year in a row).
  • Erin Windham (senior) and Logan Dougherty (senior) - fourth place in Sports and Entertainment Team
  • Jackie Gaherity (senior) and Peyton Halstead (senior) - fifth in Hospitality Team event
  • Bri Dankberg (junior) - sixth place in Sports and Entertainment individual event
  • Myeka Powers (senior) - sixth place in Apparel and Accessories individual event
  • Brittany Montag (senior) and Kelly Weiss (senior) - seventh place in the Marketing Communications Team Decision Making event