Ten Issaquah schools named achievement award winners

April 22, 2014

NEW — 6 a.m. April 22, 2014

The state’s Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction and Board of Education announced the 2013 Washington Achievement Award winners April 15, and 10 Issaquah School District schools made the cut.

The awards are selected annually using two academic indexes. A total of 413 schools statewide were chosen this year in six categories: overall excellence, high progress, reading growth, math growth, extended graduation rates and English language acquisition.

Issaquah schools that earned awards in overall excellence included all three comprehensive high schools — Issaquah, Liberty and Skyline — as well as four elementary schools: Cougar Ridge, Discovery, Endeavour and Newcastle.

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Schools honor top volunteers

April 8, 2014

Issaquah School District Golden Acorn and Outstanding Advocate Awards were recognized at a reception at Swedish/Issaquah on March 25.

Golden Acorns are presented, by a local PTA unit or council, to volunteers in recognition of their dedication and service to children and youths.

Since the beginning of the program, more than 44,000 Golden Acorns have been presented to volunteers throughout Washington state. A contribution in the name of the recipient(s) is made by the honoring PTA to the Washington State PTA Scholarship Program. From these contributions, WSPTA is able to provide grants to freshman students entering post-secondary education.

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Cougar Ridge principal to retire at year’s end

March 11, 2014

Jackie Patten, principal at Cougar Ridge Elementary School, announced Feb. 28 that she will retire at the end of the 2013-14 school year.

Patten has worked in education for 40 years, and said in an email to families that she has enjoyed working with an “outstanding community” at Cougar Ridge.

“It is truly a privilege to be ending my career in education at such a remarkable school,” Patten wrote. “Serving as an educator is a very rewarding profession.”

Organizations donate $17,000 to students

January 1, 2013

Students at Pine Lake Middle and Cougar Ridge Elementary schools got an early Christmas present Dec. 12, when the Issaquah School Board approved more than $17,000 in donations from the schools’ PTSA groups.

The Pine Lake PTSA gave $12,000 to support various teacher grants at the middle school.

The $5,350 from the Cougar Ridge PTSA will help make it easier for families to pay camp fees for students attending Camp Warm Beach, an environmental camp that fifth-graders attend every fall.

Cougar Ridge students study zombees to hunt honeybee killer

October 30, 2012

Julianna Hirao, a fifth-grade student at Cougar Ridge Elementary School, examines Washington’s second confirmed zombie bee and the pupae that surround it. By Lillian O’Rorke

Forget the trick-or-treating witches and ghouls — real zombees are out there and fifth-graders at Cougar Ridge Elementary School are hunting them.

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Department of Transportation hosts local meeting on Snoqualmie Pass project

October 22, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Oct. 22, 2012

The state Department of Transportation is at work on a major project to improve safety and meet traffic demands on the east side of Snoqualmie Pass, and local residents can comment on the project.

The project is on a 15-mile stretch between Hyak and Easton in Kittitas County. Improvements to the corridor include building a six-lane highway, stabilizing rock slopes, building wildlife crossings, reducing sharp curves and adding chain-up areas.

The 45-day public comment period for the draft environmental review on avalanche structures proposed for the project runs through Nov. 19.

The agency plans to hold a public meeting for residents to ask questions and discuss the project from 4-7 p.m. Tuesday at the Lewis Creek Visitor Center, 5808 Lakemont Blvd. S.E., Bellevue, near Cougar Ridge Elementary School.

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Homebuilder plans to add 81 homes on Cougar Mountain

June 26, 2012

Homebuilder CamWest announced plans June 6 to build 81 homes on Cougar Mountain.

The development, called Belvedere, is in Bellevue inside Issaquah School District boundaries and near Cougar Ridge Elementary School. Plans call for CamWest to develop the homes on half-acre sites.

CamWest started developing plans for the site since securing the location in February. The sales center for the neighborhood is expected to open in August.

In November, Toll Brothers — based in Horsham, Pa. — acquired Kirkland-based CamWest to enter the Seattle home market.

Executives at the combined company said the Cougar Mountain location is a selling point.

“Belvedere’s location — with sweeping views of the Olympic Mountains, Puget Sound and the Seattle skyline — will make this community unlike any other in the region,” said Eric Campbell, president of Toll Brothers’ CamWest division. “We’re starting to see growth in the real estate economy and we expect Belvedere’s luxury homes — which will be designed to maximize these extraordinary views — will quickly become sought after by home buyers looking for a distinct address.”

In Issaquah, CamWest built the Highlands Square, Hunters Place and West Highlands Park developments in the Issaquah Highlands.

Schools receive nearly $40,000 in donations

June 19, 2012

It’s the end of the school year but that doesn’t mean that donations to local schools have to end.

At the June 13 Issaquah School Board meeting, five donations of more than $2,500 each were approved by the board.

Among those was a $12,850 gift to Issaquah High School from its PTA. The funds will be used to purchase technology hardware and supplies for a mobile technology learning unit. The Grand Ridge PTA gave $8,655 to Grand Ridge Elementary School to purchase National Geographic subscriptions, music instruments, ebooks and gym class equipment.

The Career and Technical Education program and the Technology Education and Literacy in Schools program got a boost from the Issaquah Schools Foundation in the form of an $11,800 grant.

Math students at Cougar Ridge Elementary School will get new Excel math worksheets thanks to a $3,583 donation from the school’s PTA. Cougar Ridge’s PTA also donated $2,598 to help pay for half-day substitutes so teachers can be released for team science planning.

Issaquah School District receives state energy grants

June 12, 2012

The Issaquah School District has been awarded energy grants totaling $120,084, according to the state Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction.

“In addition to helping create jobs, it will help the district move forward with work that will reduce energy consumption and improve the learning and working environments,” Capital Projects Director Steve Crawford said in a statement. “The annual savings from this grant combined with our 2011 grant work will save the district a little over $200,000 a year in operational costs … especially significant as it is a reduction in general fund operational costs, which compete with classroom funding.”

The grants are intended to produce long-term energy and operational savings for the district, improve the indoor environmental qualities of schools and help stimulate construction-industry jobs. The energy projects use utility incentives, energy savings, local money and grant funds to make improvements that may otherwise not be affordable. The OSPI awarded $5.9 million in energy grants to 14 school districts throughout the state.

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Homebuilder plans to add 81 homes on Cougar Mountain

June 8, 2012

NEW — 8 a.m. June 8, 2012

Homebuilder CamWest announced plans Wednesday to build 81 homes on Cougar Mountain.

The development, called Belvedere, is in Bellevue inside Issaquah School District boundaries and near Cougar Ridge Elementary School. Plans call for CamWest to develop the homes on half-acre sites.

CamWest started developing plans for the site since securing the location in February. The sales center for the neighborhood is expected to open in August.

In November, Toll Brothers — based in Horsham, Pa. — acquired Kirkland-based CamWest to enter the Seattle home market.

Executives at the combined company said the Cougar Mountain location is a selling point.

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