Issaquah police reactivate speed cameras near schools as students return

August 28, 2012

Issaquah police plan to reactivate speed-enforcement cameras near Issaquah High School and other campuses Sept. 4, as students return to schools along Second Avenue Southeast.

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Neighbors protest proposed firearms home business

August 28, 2012

Concerns about safety and traffic led downtown Issaquah residents to join forces to stop the city from approving a permit for a home-based firearms business.

The municipal Development Services Department is considering a proposal from Michael Marinos, a longtime Issaquah resident, to open the business in the Olde Town neighborhood south of East Sunset Way.

Marinos created Bigg Dogg Firearms to offer federally licensed firearms transfers to customers purchasing weapons online. Customers could then stop at Marinos’ home-based business to pick up the firearms.

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Inaugural bus ride-along gets kindergartners ready for school

August 14, 2012

Issaquah School District kindergarten students and their parents line up to board a school bus Aug. 8 at Issaquah High School to become familiar with part of their new school experience. By Lillian O’Rorke

Standing in line next to a row of big yellow school buses, a flock of incoming kindergartners squirmed and jibber-jabbered as they awaited their maiden voyage.

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See local students’ visions of future at Seattle Center

July 24, 2012

The Classroom of the Future Exhibition, featuring the works of 20 students in Mary Rusk’s second-grade Clark Elementary School class, launches July 31 and runs through August.

Many of the young minds behind the event will be present at the July 31 launch to explain their predictions for learning in the future.

The launch starts at 6:30 p.m. at Seattle Center’s Intiman Theatre, 201 Mercer St.

After that, the exhibition — which showcases children’s ideas about what classrooms will look like 50 years from now — will be open noon to 5 p.m. Fridays through Sundays at the playhouse. Both are free and open to the public, but because of limited space, organizers suggest reserving a ticket for the launch.

Reserve tickets at www.ticketmaster.com. Learn more about the Classroom of the Future exhibition and other Seattle Center 50th anniversary events at     www.seattlecenter.com. Follow the “Next 50” links.

U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert honors Issaquah police officers

July 17, 2012

U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert recognized the Issaquah Police Department last month to honor the officers involved in a deadly shootout late last year.

Dave Reichert

Cpl. Christian Muñoz, officers Laura Asbell, Jesse Petersen, Brian Horn, Tom Griffith and Sgt. Chris Wilson earned recognition from Reichert, a former King County sheriff and Auburn Republican.

Officers fatally shot Ronald W. Ficker just before noon Sept. 24 after the rural Maple Valley man abandoned a rental car at a downtown intersection and, carrying rifles and ammunition, set off in the direction of school campuses.

In a King County-mandated inquest held in May, jurors determined Asbell, Horn, Muñoz and Petersen faced a life-threatening situation and used proper procedures to stop Ficker on the Clark Elementary School campus.

On May 4, Asbell, Horn, Muñoz and Petersen also earned the Law Enforcement Medal of Honor, the top law enforcement honor in Washington.

Reichert also recognized the officers from the House floor May 10.

“On that day, as on every day, law enforcement officers saved lives calmly, swiftly and selflessly,” he said then.

Issaquah School District schools welcome new principals

July 10, 2012

The Issaquah School District is welcoming several new faces this month.

Superintendent Steve Rasmussen recently announced the arrival of three new principals. Starting July 1, Michael Schiehser took over at Tiger Mountain Community High School, Tod Wood started at Clark Elementary School and Stacy Cho took the helm at Beaver Lake Middle School.

Schiehser began his career teaching high school science in Southern California and is a national board certified teacher. He joined the Mercer Island School District in 2005 as an associate principal at Mercer Island High School.

He has also served as the director of instruction and assessment and secondary learning support, before moving to his current position as director of teaching and learning, which includes the responsibility of serving as the primary instructional leader at Mercer Island High School.

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Students envision classrooms of the future for exhibit

June 26, 2012

Eight-year-old Sam Korostov envisions that 50 years from now, children like him will be attending class in a blimp covered in windows, with sky bridges replacing school hallways.

“It would clear so you can see the sun,” Sam said. Inside the classroom “smart boards” would be everywhere so that whatever word said aloud would automatically appear. “And you would never have to go to bed because the blimp would keep flying around the world.”

Sam is one of the 20 students in Mary Rusk’s second-grade class at Clark Elementary School whose submission will be featured later this summer at the “Classroom of the Future” exhibition in Seattle.

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City Council outlines Issaquah goals for 2013

June 5, 2012

City Council members agreed to study options for the aging Issaquah Skate Park to turn it from a bastion for drug use into a community asset, boost economic development efforts in the city and conduct another study about the future of Klahanie.

Other priorities included a plan to televise council budget deliberations, hire a lobbyist to advocate for Issaquah in Olympia, and develop a comprehensive policy related to bicyclists and pedestrians.

The council, alongside representatives from municipal departments, gathered in a YWCA Family Village at Issaquah conference room June 2 to formulate the list.

In the rare Saturday meeting, council members trimmed a long list into priorities for 2013. Though the council conducted the heavy lifting at the retreat, the process is not yet done.

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Jurors rule in favor of police officers involved in deadly shootout

May 29, 2012

Issaquah police officer Brian Horn indicates locations on a map for a King County inquest jury May 22, as District Court Judge David Steiner observes. By Greg Farrar

Jurors deliberated only 19 minutes before determining Issaquah police officers faced a life-threatening scenario and properly used lethal force to stop a rifle-toting man on the Clark Elementary School campus last year.

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Witnesses at police inquest describe chaotic scenes from school shootout

May 29, 2012

Just after 11 a.m. Sept. 24, as Ronald W. Ficker meandered from a downtown Issaquah intersection to Clark Elementary School, Leslie Olerich stared down the barrel of Ficker’s rifle.

“He looked right at us, looked down the barrel and he smiled,” Olerich said May 21 at a court hearing about the incident.

Issaquah police fatally shot Ficker, 51, after the rural Maple Valley man abandoned a rental car at a downtown intersection and, carrying rifles and ammunition, set off in the direction of school campuses and, along the way, brandished firearms to passers-by.

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