December 31, 2013
Education — no better return on your investment
As we enter a new year, Issaquah School District voters have a unique investment opportunity.
On Feb. 11, the entire community will have the opportunity to vote yes on a three-part Issaquah district school-funding ballot, comprised of the following items:
- Four-year Maintenance and Operations Levy in the following amounts: $44.5 million in 2015, $48 million in 2016, $51.5 million in 2017, and $54 million in 2018.
- One-year Transportation Levy in the amount of $1.7 million in 2015.
- Four-year Critical Repairs/Technology levy in the following amounts: $11.4 million in 2015, $12.05 million in 2016, nearly $13.6 million in 2017, and nearly $14.9 million in 2018.
December 24, 2013
Three Issaquah School District levies will come before voters Feb. 11. After a public hearing during its Dec. 16 regular meeting, the Issaquah City Council unanimously voted to support the ballot propositions.
Superintendent Ron Thiele and Issaquah School Board member Anne Moore gave a description of how much the levies would cost the taxpayers and how the district would spend the money.
“These three levies are absolutely critical to the level of service in our schools,” Moore said. “We have excellent Issaquah schools that are part of the community. It’s really a win-win for the city and the schools to help maintain the school level that we have.”
December 17, 2013
Officials are hoping to break ground on the new Issaquah Middle School next summer, and the replacement building will look much different than what was first envisioned.
The city of Issaquah’s 30-year plan for its central business district is expected to add more than 7,700 residential units, and it’s forcing the Issaquah School District to think more about long-term impacts to its facilities.
Steve Crawford, the district’s director of capital projects, told school board members Dec. 11 that if downtown Issaquah grows as projected in the Central Issaquah Plan in the next three decades, it would add an estimated 2,850 students to the school district’s enrollment. That represents a 15 percent increase over the district’s current population of 18,400 students.
December 16, 2013
December 10, 2013
The Issaquah City Council will hold a public hearing at its Dec. 16 meeting to consider supporting the Issaquah School District’s three ballot propositions that will come before voters during the Feb. 11, 2014, election.
The school district is looking to pass a four-year, $198 million maintenance and operations levy that would replace an expiring levy; a one-year, $1.7 million transportation levy to purchase new buses; and a four-year, $51.9 million capital projects and critical repairs levy aimed at technology, safety and security issues.
December 10, 2013
Liz Wilhelm has been selected as the project coordinator for the federal Drug Free Community grant awarded to the Issaquah Drug Free Community Coalition and the city of Issaquah in September.
The grant, which will bring $125,000 per year for up to 10 years to the Issaquah School District service area, is aimed at reducing teen alcohol, marijuana and prescription drug abuse. Hiring a local project coordinator to oversee a coalition work plan and funding expenditures is a requirement of the grant.
Wilhelm, an instructor at the University of Washington and Seattle Central Community College, has an extensive background in substance abuse prevention. Previously, she served as project coordinator for a Drug Free Community grant in Kitsap County. She authored Seattle Central’s prevention curriculum.
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.
November 26, 2013
New standards, longer work days are top complaints
Members of the Issaquah Education Association met with the Issaquah School Board for an hour last week, and much of the discussion centered on what the IEA president termed “unsustainable workloads” for teachers.
During a study session prior to the school board’s Nov. 13 meeting, the IEA — a union of more than 1,000 certificated teachers — spoke about the results of a bargaining survey conducted this fall. More than 70 percent of Issaquah’s teachers responded, and a few common complaints emerged.
Washington’s adoption of the Common Core State Standards, along with a new evaluation system for teachers and principals, have led to increased workloads and a general sense of overwhelming stress among educators, IEA officials said.
November 26, 2013
Issaquah club uses robots to jumpstart career paths, competitive juices
Robotics will likely be a growing field for today’s high-school graduates to pursue, and the Issaquah Robotics Society is trying to create a competitive buzz around their highly technical interests.
The robotics society, marking its 10th year this year, will begin its next season of competition in January. Like other student-led teams in the state — which compete under the rules of FIRST, For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology — they’ll have six weeks to build a robot for entrance in various regional competitions.
November 20, 2013
NEW — noon Nov. 20, 2013
The Issaquah Schools Foundation’s All in for Kids Annual Fund Campaign, with the aid of 256 high school student volunteers, called more than 9,800 families Nov. 12 and 14.
After 180 minutes of calling, the students had helped net $92,400 in pledges. Their proceeds, combined with donations collected over the past three and a half months brought the foundation’s campaign total to its highest total ever — $412,000.