Inside Schools

June 2017

Late Start Wednesdays to be implemented in 2017-18

Beginning with the 2017-18 school year, Clover Park School District will implement one-hour, late-start times for school on most Wednesday mornings.

During this time, certificated staff across the district will meet in grade level or department teams. They will review and analyze student data, revise teaching strategies and practices and collaborate to improve student achievement. Staff will also plan for additional time and support for students who need it, and enrichment for students who are already performing at grade level.

In May, families across the district received a letter from superintendent Debbie LeBeau and a calendar highlighting the late start Wednesdays.

“We understand this schedule change will impact families,” said LeBeau. “We want to give them as much advance notification as possible.”

The first late start occurs Wednesday, Sept. 20. Basically, every Wednesday during the school year, students will have a one-hour late start with the exception of:

  • Parent conference Wednesdays in the fall and spring;
  • The day before Thanksgiving; and
  • The last four weeks of school.

The 2017-18 school year calendar (English and Spanish), which shows all the late start Wednesdays, is posted on the district website under the “calendars” tab.

The late start Wednesday schedule replaces the district’s professional development half-day schedule used in previous years and maintains instructional time for students.

“We believe we can improve student achievement by collaborating more frequently and on a more regular basis. The change to late start Wednesdays provides a consistent time most weeks during the school year for certificated staff to meet in professional learning communities (PLCs),” explained LeBeau.

The use of PLCs in each school and department will increase collaboration across the district. Teachers and other staff can respond and adjust teaching strategies in a timelier manner with regular collaboration.

“We are committed to using this time to improve student learning and will monitor our progress on district, state and national assessments,” said LeBeau.

Two CPSD students win top awards from Boys & Girls Clubs Washington State Association

Clover Park School District (CPSD) is honored to have two of its students chosen as the recipients of top awards from Boys & Girls Clubs Washington State Association.

Selected from among 13 outstanding youth, Lakes High School senior Breanyah Mitchell has been named Washington State Youth of the Year. Clover Park High School sophomore Nyah Hall was selected Washington State Military Youth of the Year. These awards are the highest honors Boys & Girls Club members can receive. As the new teen representatives for all Boys & Girls Clubs in Washington, Mitchell and Hall have both received $5,000 in college scholarships.

Mitchell is a 10-year member of the Lakewood branch of the Boys & Girls Clubs of South Puget Sound. She is active in Boys & Girls Club’s programs, especially performing arts. At Lakes High School, Mitchell is the Associated Student Body vice president and a member of the girls’ varsity basketball and volleyball teams. When asked how the club has impacted her life, she stated, “The club has made me a stronger person, impacting not just me but also my mom.”

Hall has been a member of the Boys & Girls Club at the Joint Base Lewis-McChord Youth Center for five years. At Clover Park High School, Nyah is an honor roll student and a javelin thrower on the track and field team. During the Youth of the Year process, Nyah talked about the impact of the Youth Center at JBLM and the source of encouragement it provides children from military families stating, “The sky is the limit. You just have to surround yourself with people who believe in you. I did, by becoming a member of the Boys & Girls Club youth center.”

Breanyah Mitchell
Lakes High School senior Breanyah Mitchell was selected as the Boys & Girls Clubs Washington State Youth of the Year
Nyah Hall
Clover Park High School sophomore Nyah Hall was selected as the Boys & Girls Clubs Washington State Military Youth of the Year.

A “Youth of the Year” and a “Military Youth of the Year” are chosen annually to represent Washington in the Pacific Region Youth of the Year competitions.

“Youth of the Year is a really great program because it provides character-building opportunities for teenagers, and stresses the importance of education and community service,” said Matt Watrous, executive director of the Boys & Girls Clubs Washington State Association.

“Breanyah and Nyah are great examples to their peers, and we are proud to have them represent Clover Park School District,” stated superintendent Debbie LeBeau.

Youth of the Year is the Boys & Girls Club of Americas’ premier recognition program for club members. Since 1947, the Boys & Girls Club of America have selected the Youth of the Year to recognize dedication to service, community and family activities, strong moral character and life goals.

Yolanda Haskings Ray Kurtz Kristi Webster

2017 Employee of the Year

Assessment technician Yolanda Haskins, Lochburn Middle School dean of students Ray Kurtz and Lake Louise Elementary School principal Kristi Webster were named Clover Park School District’s 2017 Employees of the Year at a recent reception and ceremony. Congratulations to these three individuals, and to all of the outstanding nominees, for being great representatives of Clover Park School District!

Hudltoff Middle School Students qualify for national math and science competition

Hudtloff qualifing students
From left to right: Hudtloff TEAMS participants Rix Pearson (grade7), Trevor Jones (grade 8), Mary Brown (grade 8), Emily Salgren (grade 8) and Arthur "Tre" Clark (grade 7).

Hudtloff Middle School Technology Student Association (TSA) seventh and eighth grade members recently competed in the regional Tests of Engineering Aptitude, Mathematics and Science (TEAMS) competition, meeting challenges and qualifying for the national competition.

TEAMS is an annual competition challenging students to work collaboratively and apply their math and science knowledge in practical, creative ways to solve real engineering challenges. Participating in TEAMS, increases students’ knowledge of engineering, builds their confidence in STEM activities and enhances their ability to work with others to solve complex problems.

The TEAMS competition helps develop “STEM-capable” students in an engaging way by showing them how math and science, with an engineering focus, are used to make tangible differences in the world.

Hudtloff’s team has three eighth grade students and two seventh grade students. All of the students are active participants in Career and Technical Education (CTE) classes at Hudtloff taught by Will Leslie and Bobby de Grouchy. In these classes, students have learned science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills.

Hudtloff students took their math and science interests beyond the school day by participating in TSA, a program sponsored by the district’s CTE department. Students attended Thursday TSA club meetings during the school year, and practiced their STEM skills by participating in robotics competitions such as the First Lego League, regional TSA events and local competitions such as Mathematics Engineering Science Achievement (MESA).

“This was our first year at TEAMS, and the contest was very difficult, composed of a math exam, essay writing and an engineering challenge. They pushed through, but it’s safe to say it was mentally exhausting. The essay component was worked on by all students, and we did very well in this area showcasing the kids’ research and writing skills. Their essay was titled ‘The Future of Solar Energy in Washington State,’” de Grouchy said.

“The engineering portion was where we really shined,” he continued. “Experience at fabricating in Mr. Leslie’s STEM lab, work in robotics, and participation in MESA Day helped the kids approach a disparate set of materials, work together to make a plan and create a workable robot arm that could move and accurately place a water bottle a short distance onto a target. They were working until the timer went off, and had some stops and starts, but completed the challenge in time and received full points – which helped us qualify for nationals,” he continued.

“The Hudtloff community is very proud of our team, and of the sustained success and excellence of our CTE and STEM programs. We have received strong support from the district, as well as administration, in providing opportunities for our students,” stated de Grouchy.

Mentorship program builds skills and community for International Baccalaureate students

Clover Park School District offers International Baccalaureate (IB) programs at two schools: a Primary Years Program (PYP) at Idlewild Elementary School for kindergarten through fifth grade students, and another at Lieutenant General William H. Harrison Preparatory School (Harrison Prep), for students in grades six through twelve.

In the final year of the PYP, students participate in a culminating project, the PYP Exhibition. “The exhibition follows the IB approach of transdisciplinary inquiry, conducted in the spirit of personal and shared responsibility. It’s also an assessment, and a celebration of students’ transition into the next phase of their schooling,” said Dori Zukowski, IB coordinator at Idlewild.

In preparing for the exhibition, Zukowski reached out to Erika Cox, IB coordinator at Harrison Prep, to see if any upper level IB students would be interested in mentoring IB primary students.

PYP heart disease research presentation
Fifth grade ID student Alvin Nyonjo presents his research on heart disease at the PYP Exhibition.
annual ID exhibition preparation
Fifth grade students at Idelwild Elementary School Partnered with 11th and 12th grade IB Diploma Programme Students at Harrision Preparatory School to complete their annual ID Exhibition.

“Eight students rose to the challenge, and have been supporting groups of two to three students at Idlewild in preparing their exhibition projects for the past nine weeks,” reported Zukowski.

“My mentor helps me to see different perspectives and inspires me to work harder and refine my research. He keeps our group on track and encourages us to be successful,” said Carlin Lee-Welden, a fifth grade student whose PYP exhibition project focused on researching a solution for gang violence.

The mentorship program has been beneficial for both primary and upper level IB students.

Idlewild’s fifth grade IB teachers appreciated the enthusiasm, responsibility and dedication shown by Harrison Prep’s mentors. “Our fifth grade students look up to their mentors, and their knowledge of the essential elements of an IB education has deepened our students’ understanding. We hope this program continues to grow next year,” said Liz O’Connell, a fifth grade IB teacher at Idlewild.

The Harrison Prep mentors receive hours towards their Creativity Activity and Service (CAS) requirement for the IB Diploma Programme. Over the two years of their programme, Harrison Prep students must accumulate 150 CAS hours, during which they explore the areas of creativity, activity and service outside of the classroom, gaining new insights and skills while serving their community. Harrison Prep students have enjoyed accumulating service hours by mentoring younger students, and hope that the program continues in the future.

“I was able to see a different side of the hard work the fifth grade students are doing, and that they are passionate about these issues and about making a positive impact in our world,” said Harrison Prep twelfth-grader and IB mentor Joshua Porterfield of his experience. “It reminded me of why I wanted to be an IB scholar.”

Lakes High School AJROTC earns coveted Honor Unit of Distinction Award

Lakes High School’s Lancer Battalion Army Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (AJROTC) cadets and their instructors, First Sergeant Raul Munoz and Lieutenant Colonel Allen E. Patty, earned the coveted Honor Unit with Distinction (HUD) rating during their US Army Cadet Command JROTC Program for Accreditation (JPA) inspection this month.

The JPA inspection occurs every three years.

“The Lancer Battalion has been extremely busy with many conflicting requirements,” Lt. Col. Allen E. Patty, Ph.D., senior Army instructor of the battalion. “Therefore, although we didn’t think that we’d fail, we were unsure of how well we’d do.”

The JPA began with an in-ranks inspection and Color Guard performance assessment. Then, cadets presented their continuous improvement project and briefed inspectors on their service learning project. Selected cadets underwent portfolio and interview inspections. Finally, the battalion’s organizational compliance and supply checklists were inspected to evaluate their operations in accordance with Cadet Command and US Army regulation requirements.

The battalion has been wearing the Blue Star as an honor unit for many years. Units must score an overall 95 percent through the inspection to qualify for the highest designation, HUD, and the Gold Star, placing the unit in the top ten percent of the 1,741 Army JROTC programs worldwide.

“For the past five years, First Sergeant Raul Munoz has been tireless in the amount of passion, commitment and endurance he personally invests into this program,” stated Patty. “The cadets follow his lead. They also worked long hours after school, during spring break and on weekends to prepare. Although the cadets and cadre were working very hard, we knew most units just hope to pass the inspection standards, and that achieving HUD was going to be a struggle,” he continued.

Following the inspection, the battalion gathered in the conference room, where the inspectors had been preparing the final tally of results. They took the Lancer Team through the results of each inspection element.

“The battalion was elated when they announced the final score of 96 percent,” Patty said. “The whole team hugged and cried, celebrating the commitment and teamwork that led them to achieve this high mark,” he continued.


Last Day of School

The last day of school is Wednesday, June 14! Schools will operate on an early release schedule.

School will start in the fall on Wednesday, August 30.

Graduation Cap

High School Graduations

  • Clover Park High School
    Wednesday, June 7 at 4 p.m.
    Tacoma Dome
  • Lakes High School
    Wednesday, June 7 at 7 p.m.
    Tacoma Dome
  • Harrison Preparatory School
    Thursday, June 8 at 6 p.m.
    Clover Park Technical College McGavick Center
  • Open Doors
    Friday, June 9 at 5 p.m.
    Clover Park Technical College McGavick Center

Scott Nordi

Lakes High School (LHS) athletic director Scott Nordi was honored recently as Washington Association of School Administrators’ coathletic director of the year! This award builds on his recognition as the 3A Pierce County League and West Central District’s top athletic director. Nordi has been the athletic director at LHS for five years; before that, he held the same position at Clover Park High School.

Scot Nordi

City of Lakewood

Caution: Congestion ahead

Road improvement season is here, which means slowdowns in some parts of the city. The city thanks residents for their patience while the work is done to improve travel through Lakewood.

South Tacoma Way: state Route 512 to 96th Street; Steilacoom Boulevard to 88th Street

When finished, South Tacoma Way will have shared bike lanes, concrete curbs and gutters, sidewalks, LED street lights, new pavement and updated traffic signals at SR 512, 100th, 96th and 88th streets.

A second right turn lane will be added to Steilacoom Boulevard and a gateway entrance sign with neighborhood designation at 100th Street.

Gravelly Lake Drive: 100th Street to Bridgeport Way

This sidewalk project adds curbs and gutters from 100th to Bridgeport Way, LED street lighting, a traffic signal and additional improvements at Mt. Tacoma Dr. SW. There will be continuous sidewalks on Gravelly Lake Drive from 112th to Bridgeport Way.

Lakewood Drive reconstruction/overlay: 100th Street to Steilacoom Boulevard

Pavement reconstruction on Lakewood Drive between 100th to Steilacoom Boulevard includes curbs and gutters and concrete sidewalks on the west side of road.

Lakeview/112th Street sidewalks: Kendrick Street to Steilacoom Boulevard

This pedestrian safety project adds concrete curbs and gutters, sidewalks and bike lanes to 112th Street from Kendrick to Lakeview and also on Lakeview from 112th to 108th. The additions continue on the western side of Lakeview from 108th to Steilacoom Boulevard. Street lights will also be added.

Additional projects in 2017-2018

  • 2017 chip seal program Oakbrook
  • Repave Onyx Drive SW: 87th to 89th streets
  • Safety improvements: 40th and 96th streets, Military Road and 112th Street
  • Gravelly Lake Drive improvements: Washington Boulevard to Nyanza, 59th St to Steailcoom
  • Dekoven Drive traffic calming project
  • Safe Routes to Schools: John Dower and Phillips roads

Spot Light on Schools

Seahawks visits encourage attendance, train safety

Doug Baldwin with students

Tillicum and Tyee Park Elementary School students had an unforgettable lesson on train safety when Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin made surprise appearances during assemblies at both schools! Both events were made possible through Washington State Department of Transportation and Amtrak Cascades

Jermaine Kearse at Lakes assembly

Seattle Seahawks wide receiver (and Lakes High School alum) Jermaine Kearse surprised Lakes High School students at a recent assembly, stressing the importance of good attendance habits and staying engaged in school. Kearse shared positive messages about setting goals to create purpose, and then answered questions from students. The assembly was organized by the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI), the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) and Attendance Matters, a nonprofit promoting good attendance habits to Washington’s students

Lakes and Clover Park photography students display work at St. Clare Hospital and Lakewold Gardens

Lakes photography students

Lakes High School (LHS) photography students displayed large format photos in the hallways of St. Clare Hospital in a show titled “Contributing Toward Creating a Healthy Community.” Now in its fifth year, the show is the result of a partnership coordinated by hospital staff and LHS photography teacher Scott Waeschle.

Clover Park High School photography students

The Lakewold Gardens show is the result of a partnership between Clover Park High School’s photography program, led by teacher Jeffrey Hurdus, and Lakewold Gardens staff. Eighteen students entered a total of 25 images this year, which were awarded prizes by a panel of community judges.

Superintendent Column

Reflecting on our own successes

Superintendent Deborah L. LeBeau
Deborah L. LeBeau

June is a wonderful month in the school year, as we celebrate our graduates, and think of the academic and personal growth they have achieved as students in Clover Park School District. It’s a time for us to reflect on what we’ve accomplished in the past school year, and celebrate our successes.

Here are some of the highlights of this year:

  • At the close of the 2016 school year, our high school graduation rate skyrocketed 13.3 percentage points to 89.9%;
  • Seven Clover Park School District schools were named 2016 Schools of Distinction: Tyee Park, Lake Louise, Carter Lake and Evergreen Elementary Schools, Mann and Woodbrook Middle Schools and Harrison Preparatory School;
  • Lakeview Hope Academy earned a 2016 Washington Achievement Award for closing the achievement gap among black students;
  • Open Doors held its first winter awarding of diplomas ceremony, with 14 students celebrating the completion of the program’s graduation requirements;
  • The district celebrated 75 successful, first year teachers and their mentors who participated in our Beginning Educator Support Team (BEST) program; and
  • Our community relations and graphic design team received Awards of Excellence and Best in Category for the district’s annual report to the community from the Washington School Public Relations Association.

These were just a few high points of my year; what were the highlights for you and your family?

Thank you for partnering with us this year in creating promising futures for all students. We’ll see you in August, when a new school year begins, full of new challenges and opportunities for success.