What happened to the Issaquah Highlands?

December 11, 2013

NEW — 10:40 a.m. Dec. 11, 2013

At some point recently, the Issaquah Highlands became a place that people would actually want to go to. I don’t really know what happened.

Jacob Brunette Issaquah High School

Jacob Brunette
Issaquah High School

Whenever I thought of the highlands, I thought of an ugly place. The main image that came to mind was a neat grid of streets, with nothing but flat wasteland separating them. Farther up the hill was a huge neighborhood of houses that were eerily similar and spaced too close together.

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Clark, Creekside honored as schools of distinction

December 3, 2013

The Issaquah School District had two schools — Clark Elementary and Creekside Elementary — earn 2013 School of Distinction awards in October.

The awards were given to 55 elementary schools, 24 middle/junior high schools and 23 high schools throughout the state.

To attain the honor, schools must demonstrate outstanding student performance and improvements over a five-year period. Student achievement in both reading and math must be above the state median. Both math and reading improvements must be among the top 5 percent of the state’s schools.

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Umbrella causes lockdown

December 2, 2013

Last month, custodian Allen Anderson walked into Issaquah High School, wearing his camouflage jacket and carrying his umbrella. A short while later, he was facing down a squad of armed police officers.

The confrontation came about as a result of a 911 call reporting a suspicious man carrying what looked like a gun. The police contacted school administrators, who enacted lockdown procedures to protect everyone in the building from the potential weapon: Anderson’s umbrella. After hearing the description of the supposed gunman over his district-issued two-way radio, Anderson recognized himself as the suspect and used the radio to inform administrators.

Jacob Brunette

Jacob Brunette Issaquah High School

Under directions from Assistant Principal Derek Heinz, Anderson walked to the front of the school, alone, wearing the coat mentioned in the 911 call. When he reached the front door, he saw four armed police officers in the parking lot.

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Sammamish supports Tent City 4

December 2, 2013

While there is generally strong support throughout Sammamish for Tent City 4, the sudden decision to host the camp near Skyline High School alarmed many parents in the area.

Most Skyline students welcome the change and many have contributed with donations and meals. Curious about the set-up of the traveling homeless encampment and wanting to make my own judgment, I decided to visit the site.

By Helen Wang Skyline High School

By Helen Wang
Skyline High School

Driving in, the first thing I noticed was that the donations and security tents, along with the general kitchen, washing and common areas, were separated from the actual campsite. As I stepped out of my car, I was greeted by a smiling volunteer who helped me unload donations and introduced me to the people working at the desk.

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Let’s Talk About It

December 2, 2013

Youths are exposed to challenging circumstances every day. Every happy face has a story behind it, and sometimes that story is bad enough to drive someone to take his or her life.

Teen suicide, a subject some don’t like to breach, is a crippling problem when it comes to attempting to reverse the statistics. In our community, we are lucky enough to have access to a variety of great resources, like school administrators and TeenLink, to help students in need. But, frankly, teens are still reluctant to approach an adult or peer if they are struggling.

Sampurna Basu Skyline High School

Sampurna Basu
Skyline High School

The general attitude among teens is it is easier to ignore a problem than get involved in a serious ordeal if you suspect someone you know might be struggling. This is not helped by the fact that, according to the Healthy Youth Survey administered by the Issaquah School District, most students do not feel comfortable approaching a staff member at their school with personal problems.

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Teen Talk

December 2, 2013

How comfortable do you feel reporting a problem to the school administration?

“I feel very comfortable … Ever since I’ve been at IHS, the staff here have been nothing but accommodating, and we have a lot of incredible teachers and faculty members that are willing to talk about anything.”

Benny Feinsilber, junior

 

“Usually, I feel like I can figure it out on my own or it’s none of my business, but I guess if I was really put in a tough situation, I wouldn’t be that afraid to go to the administration.”

Lutza Petrin, senior

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The end-of-year grind will be over soon

November 29, 2013

NEW — 11 a.m. Nov. 28, 2013

November and December are two of the most stressful yet exciting months of the year.

Homecoming has come and gone in a blur of anticipation and pictures. The novelty of reconnecting with friends and gossiping about languish summer travels has long since worn away.

Noela Lu
Skyline High School

It’s during these two months that the grind of school truly kicks in, and getting up in the morning becomes a battle. Grades begin to slip while the number of tests and quizzes continues to increase exponentially. Hitting snooze on your alarm clock has become an unfortunate habit, and so has sleeping at twelve o’clock, or one o’clock, or two o’clock…

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Singing Liberty trio performs in Nashville

November 15, 2013

NEW — 1:55 p.m. Nov. 15, 2013

Nov. 7 was just another regular day of rehearsal for Liberty High School choir students Cassi Cox, Sarah Edmonds and Jennifer Wood.

They stood, staggered among their peers, with their faces buried in the music sheets, singing along as teacher Robin Wood dutifully instructed.

Just a week earlier, though, the Liberty trio was in Nashville, Tenn. performing in front of an audience of more than 2,500 people, hand selected to stand among the best singers in the nation.

“It was kind of surreal, performing with so many talented singers,” Edmonds said.

Liberty High School students (from left) Sarah Edmonds, Cassi Cox and Jennifer Wood, with Liberty choir teacher Robin Wood, take in the indoor gardens at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel in Nashville, Tenn. (contributed photo)

Liberty High School students (from left) Sarah Edmonds, Cassi Cox and Jennifer Wood, with Liberty choir teacher Robin Wood, take in the indoor gardens at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel in Nashville, Tenn. (contributed photo)

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Rotary club honors students of the month

November 12, 2013

The Rotary Club of Issaquah honored the following high school seniors as its students of the month for October:

Amanda Levenson

  • Issaquah High School senior
  • Recognition in Science
  • National Honor Society president
  • STEM scholar science recognition award
  • 3.99 GPA
  • National Charity League class of 2014 president

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Issaquah Schools Foundation donations make a big impact in Issaquah classrooms

October 15, 2013

NEW — 10:45 a.m. Oct. 15, 2013

At Discovery Elementary School, fourth-grade students recently huddled around plastic bins filled with sediment and conducted science experiments about water flow.

It was a simple lesson, but one that might not have been possible without private funding.

Each of the 15 elementary schools in the Issaquah School District has received money to improve its science curriculum from the Issaquah Schools Foundation, a nonprofit organization. It’s just one of dozens of programs ISF assists every year at all grade levels.

By Neil Pierson Ansley Jaye reads in Stephanie Keibel’s third-grade class at Discovery Elementary School. Students are seeing their reading scores improve thanks in part to funding from the Issaquah Schools Foundation.

By Neil Pierson
Ansley Jaye reads in Stephanie Keibel’s third-grade class at Discovery Elementary School. Students are seeing their reading scores improve thanks in part to funding from the Issaquah Schools Foundation.

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