Patriots get their palace

October 14, 2014

District unveils remodeled Liberty High School

The new Liberty High School building is sleek, modern and almost industrial in its appearance.

Past Liberty students would hardly recognize it as the same school, but some internal touches, most importantly a can’t-miss banner inscribed with the words “Proud to be a Patriot,” bring familiarity and warmth to the newly remodeled campus.

The Issaquah Chamber of Commerce and Issaquah School District partnered to unveil the new Liberty at a ribbon-cutting ceremony Oct. 10.

By Greg Farrar Marnie Maraldo, Issaquah School District School Board president, cuts the ceremonial ribbon as other board members, Superintendent Ron Thiele, Principal Josh Almy and others applaud and smile, as the completion of the final phase of the school remodel is celebrated Oct. 10 during a community open house.

By Greg Farrar
Marnie Maraldo, Issaquah School District School Board president, cuts the ceremonial ribbon as other board members, Superintendent Ron Thiele, Principal Josh Almy and others applaud and smile, as the completion of the final phase of the school remodel is celebrated Oct. 10 during a community open house.

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School district makes $70,000 in change orders

September 23, 2014

Nearly $70,000 in change orders have been made to the construction projects at Apollo and Issaquah Valley elementary schools.

A contract with Babbit Neuman Construction Co. has been increased by $68,661.32. The revised contract total of $12,165,180.02 is within the project budget.

The amount includes siding, combining two classrooms into a single large classroom and changing faucets in restrooms to automatic faucets.

Both schools held ribbon-cutting ceremonies earlier this month, commemorating the official end of modernization efforts that were approved by voters in 2012.

Salmon Hatchery Classroom Tour

September 23, 2014

Issaquah School District finishes school projects, delays others

August 26, 2014

Staff members, parents and students at Apollo and Issaquah Valley elementary schools have been waiting years for their buildings to be refurbished, and their wishes will be granted when school starts Sept. 3.

By Greg Farrar A lighted reader board has been put up at Issaquah Valley Elementary School.

By Greg Farrar
A lighted reader board has been put up at Issaquah Valley Elementary School.

The two elementary schools were major pieces of a $219 million bond measure that Issaquah School District voters approved in April 2012. Issaquah Valley and Apollo received about $6.6 million each for similar modernization projects that focused on creating additional classroom spaces, improving building security and upgrading existing spaces for a continued influx of new students.

The district is expecting to add 350 students in the 2014-15 year, and projections released last year showed the school system could grow by more than 2,800 students over the next 30 years.

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Issaquah schools budget set to receive slight boost

August 19, 2014

The Issaquah School District will receive an additional $5.4 million from the state government, which equates to revenue growth of less than 1 percent in the 2014-15 school year.

Public school districts and the state Legislature continue to battle over the McCleary decision of 2012, which said lawmakers weren’t fully funding basic education costs and called for them to rectify the situation.

The state increased funding by about $1 billion for its 2013-15 biennial budget, but that isn’t quite cutting it when it comes to meeting the requirements of the McCleary decision, school officials said.

“Though a billion dollars sounds like a lot, when you split it over two years and divide it by 295 school districts, you see it translates to a rather minute increase in the proportion of state revenue,” said Jake Kuper, the Issaquah district’s chief of finance and operations.

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Issaquah Valley Elementary School’s ‘guardian angel’ wins state award

July 1, 2014

Suzie Kuflik receives $500 check from WEA

Suzie Kuflik received statewide recognition May 30 from the Washington Education Association Minority Affairs and Human Rights Committee, for bringing the Angel Program to Issaquah Valley Elementary School.

The award came with a $500 check, which Kuflik donated to the Issaquah Food & Clothing Bank, where she frequently volunteers.

Among her efforts to better the Issaquah community, Kuflik created the Angel Program to pair students in need with “adopted families.”

Those families are given the age, size and gender of their child to provide basic necessities, though many donate additional gifts. The Angel Program’s work has inspired other schools in the Issaquah School District to adapt the program to help more students.

By Rachel Osgood Suzie Kuflik (left) is presented with a $500 check by Stephen Miller, vice president of the Washington Education Association, as part of a state award. She then donated the check to the Issaquah Food & Clothing Bank.

By Rachel Osgood
Suzie Kuflik (left) is presented with a $500 check by Stephen Miller, vice president of the Washington Education Association, as part of a state award. She then donated the check to the Issaquah Food & Clothing Bank.

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Diane Holt to leave Issaquah Valley Elementary School, take survey to help find new principal

June 26, 2014

NEW – 11:40 a.m. June 26, 2014

Diane Holt, the principal at Issaquah Valley Elementary School, has accepted a new job with the Federal Way School District.

Holt, principal at Issaquah Valley for the past five years, will be the new director of leadership support for Federal Way schools.

She has been working for the past year to become a nationally certified principal mentor, and the position in Federal Way will allow her to put those skills into practice, Holt said in an email to Issaquah Valley families.

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Local boy gets golden opportunity with McDonald’s trip to the World Cup

June 17, 2014

John Carroz took his 9-year-old son J.K. to get passport photos in early May.

“Are we going somewhere?” an inquisitive J.K. asked.

“Uh, no, it’s a Mother’s Day gift,” John responded, trying his best to hide a secret of epic proportions.

By Greg Farrar Sounders FC goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann (left), Eastside FC player J.K. Carroz, 9, and Ronald McDonald pose for publicity and family photos at local owner Alan Finkelstein’s Gilman Boulevard McDonald’s restaurant after the unveiling of a banner with the surprise travel prize for Carroz.

By Greg Farrar
Sounders FC goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann (left), Eastside FC player J.K. Carroz, 9, and Ronald McDonald pose for publicity and family photos at local owner Alan Finkelstein’s Gilman Boulevard McDonald’s restaurant after the unveiling of a banner with the surprise travel prize for Carroz.

The cat was finally let out of the bag June 11, when, in front of family, friends and Seattle Sounders FC goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann, J.K. learned he won a trip to the World Cup in Brazil courtesy of McDonald’s.

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To the Editor

June 17, 2014

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Salmon Days logo

Issaquah Press masthead took me back to glorious days

I love The Issaquah Press logo of the June 11 edition and its celebration of the new Salmon Days logo.

Seeing it reminded me of the glorious days of the ‘60s and ‘70s when everyone, it seemed, took a stand on important social issues; where student activism helped to end a war, environmental awareness led to a bipartisan vote to establish the Environmental Protection Agency (imagine, brought to us by a Republican President — Nixon — and ratified by the House and the Senate, ah, the days). Women started seeing themselves as more than just window-dressing and demanded equal treatment, and the whole concept of healthy, sustainable living was nurtured.

Let’s hope the new logo inspires similar activism and continues to broaden our vision of what we can achieve.

Kathy Swoyer

Issaquah

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Apollo, Issaquah Valley budgets revised

May 27, 2014

The ongoing construction projects at Apollo and Issaquah Valley elementary schools had details revised for a third time at the Issaquah School Board’s May 14 meeting.

A revised contract of $10,318,949 was approved at the meeting, an increase of $141,622 from the previous amount. Babbit Neuman Construction Co. is the contractor on the two schools.

The revisions include changing storage rooms into small instructional spaces, sound-system changes in multipurpose classrooms, and the addition of call buttons in classrooms and activity spaces at both schools.

The revised contract total is within the board’s original budget.

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