Messages to Families

  • SBLSD Family News: 4/30/21

    Posted by SBLSD on 4/30/2021

    It truly feels wonderful to be planning for full-time, in-person instruction next year! We know many of you are as excited as we are. We shared the news on Tuesday, and we've already received some great questions that are answered in a Q&A at the end of this message.

    We also recognize that there are a wide variety of opinions and beliefs about COVID-19 and the associated state requirements and safety guidelines applied to school districts. Following this guidance has allowed us to bring students back for hybrid learning, offer participation in sports and activities, and host senior celebrations. As we finish this school year strong, we’re eager to focus our collective efforts on an even stronger start to the 2021-22 school year.

    4/29/21

    Q&A

    Why are students and staff required to wear face coverings?
    This is a Washington state requirement. All students, staff, volunteers and guests must wear face coverings while at school indoors (see page 11 of the Department of Health’s K-12 Schools 2020-2021 Guidance). Exceptions are made while eating lunch and during recess. The face covering requirement does not pertain to those with a verified exemption. The District adheres to all state-mandated requirements to maintain safe and healthy learning environments.

    Why are you waiting until the fall to reinstate full-time in-person learning?
    There are a number of significant logistical challenges that would have further disrupted an already heavily disrupted school year, would have added costs and would have resulted in limited benefits given where we are already in this school year. Based on these realities, after carefully analyzing new state social distancing guidance and our operations, the District and School Board decided it was best to focus efforts on planning for these changes to begin in the summer and fall.

    Here’s a few examples of the operational effects researched and presented at the April 14 School Board meeting:

    • Implementing these changes would require reconfiguring some bus runs and driver routes, as well as putting some students 3 to a seat.

    • At lunch, where 6 feet social distance is still required, we would need more space (up to double the current lunchroom space), additional supervision and staffing, and the high school would likely need 4 lunches (making 4th period over 2 hours long).

    • We would need to develop new elementary lunch and recess schedules, as well as new bell schedules at middle and high schools.

    • Distance learning students cannot switch to full-time without also requiring new class assignments (changing teachers), and there is limited space in classrooms.

    • Guidelines recommend students face the same direction, and some classrooms would not be able to accommodate students in this configuration due to their current furniture (tables rather than desks).

    • The district would need to agree to new terms with several labor groups.

    • There are additional challenges for students receiving special education services that would need to be worked through.

    • There are also increased safety expenses to take into consideration, including additional staff to conduct health and safety screenings each morning as well as additional PPE requirements.

    We are dedicated to working through all of these challenges; the fact is that they will take time and resources. Implementing these changes with the next school year allows us to finish this school year without putting students and staff through yet another large mid-year system change. It also gives us enough time to make these changes thoughtfully and collaboratively.

    If my child already attends school in the District, do I still need to register them for next year?
    No, if your child is currently in our system in grades K-12, they will be automatically rolled up to the next grade level and you do not need to re-register.

    The only students who need to register are those not currently attending our district or those who are moving up from preschool to kindergarten.

    If your child is currently being homeschooled or solely using a 3rd party vendor and you plan to return to the district for the 21-22 school year, you DO need to re-register.

    Graduation dates set!
    Graduation dates, times and location are now confirmed for both Bonney Lake and Sumner high schools! We’re thrilled that graduation ceremonies will look closer to “normal” this year in a new, outdoor space that allows the entire graduating class to be together. Each school will communicate directly with seniors and their families on details such as tickets, practice, safety measures and more.
    • BLHS: June 17, 6 p.m., Cheney Stadium

    • SHS: June 18, 7 p.m., Cheney Stadium

    May calendar and menus now available
    The District calendar and menus are available for the month of May! Take a look at next month’s calendar here. You can also preview and print the breakfast and lunch menus for elementarymiddle and high school.
     
    Families can request to preview HIV/AIDS prevention curriculum
    The District is offering an opportunity for families to preview the HIV/AIDS prevention curriculum for students currently enrolled in:
    • 6th and 7th grade

    • 8th graders enrolled in 2nd semester Skills for Life

    • 9th grade Health classes

    • Applicable 10th through 12th grade classes

    Washington state law requires that every student receive HIV/AIDs prevention education in grades 5 through 12. Since this unit covers sensitive topics, Washington state law and SBLSD board policy require that families are provided the opportunity to preview these lessons.

    This is an opportunity for families to understand the health content for grades 6 through 12 by previewing the teaching materials used in the classroom.

    • Grades 6-7: HIV/AIDS

    • Grade 8: Skills for Life - HIV/AIDS

    • Grade 9: Health

    • Grades 10-12: HIV/AIDS

    Families can preview the curriculum May 3-31 by sending a to dawn_palumbo@sumnersd.org. Please include the student's name, school and grade level. A copy of the curriculum will be emailed to you in PDF format for review along with the exclusion form.

    Families wishing to exclude their child from the HIV/AIDS curriculum required by our state must preview this curriculum and sign the exclusion form.

    Season 3 sports and Unit 3 intramural activities kick off in May
    All sports in Season 3 begin May 3. Season 3 sports include basketball, wrestling, boys tennis, gymnastics and lacrosse. Requirements are different for each sport’s level of contact and may vary between practices and matches.

    At the middle school level, intramural activities begin May 11 and run through June 4. Activities include flag football, ultimate frisbee, base sports (kickball, wiffle ball, slowpitch softball) and net sports (tennis and pickleball). There are no competitions or games with other schools. If you would like your child to participate in intramurals, please contact your child’s school to fill out a form and get more information.

    For sports and intramural activities, the District is following the Washington State Department of Health’s Healthy Washington Sporting Activities Requirements and any additional requirements from the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA).

    Vaccination event at Bonney Lake High: May 8
    The Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department is hosting a drive-thru vaccination event on May 8 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Bonney Lake High School (10920 199th Ave Ct E). About 1,800 doses of the Pfizer vaccine will be given, which is authorized for anyone ages 16 and older. Youth 16 and 17 years old must have a completed Vaccine Pediatric Consent Form before getting vaccinated. The vaccine is free. No insurance required.

    Registration is now open. Click here for an appointment.
     
    READY! for Kindergarten spring registration now open for in-person and virtual sessions
    In case you missed it, registration is now open to attend the READY! for Kindergarten spring program! This free program, for parents and caregivers of children birth to age five, provides tools to prepare children for kindergarten. During these sessions, you’ll learn important information specific to your child’s age on how they learn, grow, and receive essential take-home tools and activities to make learning easy and fun. Families who are new to READY! will learn more at an orientation prior to the class sessions. Registration is required. Class sessions will be held in-person and virtually.
    • May 17: 6:30-8 p.m. at Donald Eismann Elementary

    • May 19: 6:30-8 p.m. at Maple Lawn Elementary

    • May 25: 6:30-8 p.m. (Virtual on Zoom)

    Orientation for new families will be held from 6-6:30 p.m. prior to the scheduled sessions.

    District health and safety protocols must be followed for the in-person sessions on May 17 and May 19. All attendees ages 3+ and facilitators must wear a mask and practice 6-foot social distancing. Attendees will also complete an attestation form prior to entering the class, and will have their temperature taken upon entry.

    Participants in the virtual class will receive the Zoom information prior to the class.

    Register online here: readyforkindergarten.org/sumner where you will be asked to create an account prior to registering.

    Find more information at sumnersd.org/ready, or email Annette Bowen at annette_bowen@sumnersd.org.

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  • Students have the opportunity for full-time in-person instruction next year

    Posted by SBLSD on 4/27/2021

    We are excited to announce that plans are underway to welcome ALL students back to full-time in-person learning for the 2021-22 school year. We will share additional information with you in the coming weeks. Here are a few highlights:

    • Using 3 feet as our metric for physical distancing, all families who prefer full-time in-person instruction will have that option.
    • Details about distance learning options for next year will be available shortly.
    • Students will be required to wear face coverings. 
    • The USDA announced that free breakfast and lunch will continue to be provided for all students through the 2021-22 school year. 

    We will continue to respond to changing guidelines and provide updated information as needed. That said, our intention at this time is to provide full-time in-person instruction for every Sumner-Bonney Lake student. 

    Registration is open for next year
    Registration for the 2021-22 school year is open. If you know of someone who hasn’t yet registered their child for school next year, now is the time. The process is fast and easy using our online registration portal

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  • SBLSD Family News: 4/22/21

    Posted by SBLSD on 4/22/2021

    SBLSD welcomes two new administrators to district leadership

    The Sumner-Bonney Lake School District is excited to welcome two well-qualified, experienced administrators who will join the team July 1, focusing on critical areas such as operations, health and well-being, equity and student success.

    • Dr. Thu Ament is joining the District as Deputy Superintendent, a new title for a position with increased responsibilities that replaces retiring Assistant Superintendent Bill Gaines. 

    • David Brower will be the Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources and Student Services, a new position that will, in part, oversee the District’s increased emphasis on various aspects of employee, family and student relations. 

    Dr. Thu Ament joins SBLSD as Deputy Superintendent

    Dr. Thu Ament joins the Sumner-Bonney Lake School District after devoting more than 24 years of experience in Washington state’s second largest, most diverse urban school district. He has distinguished himself as a respected leader and problem-solver who believes in working collaboratively to support the mission of a district. 

    In his current role with Tacoma Public Schools, Thu has a broad range of responsibility working in operations. He provided leadership and supervision to their transportation department, facilities and maintenance programs, community partnership program, and athletics/activities departments. He also has negotiated multiple, high-stakes collective bargaining agreements with bus drivers, food services workers and principals.

    Thu also serves as the coordinator of Tacoma Public Schools’ Emergency Operations Center. In this role, he manages cabinet-level staff responding to high-level public emergencies such as lead found in drinking water throughout the district, major district-wide budget reductions and position eliminations, and a multi-school mumps outbreak. He is now leading Tacoma Public Schools through the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Thu is a proud graduate of Central Washington University, earning two bachelor’s degrees and a master’s degree. Also, he earned his Project Management Certification from the University of Washington and a Doctor of Education focused in Educational Leadership and Administration at Washington State University.

    “We are so honored to have Dr. Ament join our District,” said Deb Norris, SBLSD School Board President. “Dr. Ament is a well-respected leader in our region and we look forward to serving alongside him in moving forward with major District initiatives and projects.”

    Thu will oversee all district operations, engage with the community,  and partner with Superintendent Dr. Laurie Dent in leading the district forward.

    “Thu is going to provide tremendous value to not only our District, but our entire Sumner-Bonney Lake community,” said Superintendent Dr. Laurie Dent. “His contributions will be invaluable to furthering the mission and values we uphold to ensure the success and well-being of all students.”

    In his spare time, Thu enjoys outdoor activities such as camping and fishing. He has two children: a son attending college at Central Washington University and a daughter who will start college this fall at Oregon State University. Thu arrived in the U.S. at a young age, where he attended early elementary in Colorado before moving to Washington state and graduating from high school in East Tacoma.

    Thu will be starting as Deputy Superintendent on July 1.

    David Brower joins SBLSD as Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources and Student Services

    The Sumner-Bonney Lake School District also welcomes David Brower as Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources and Student Services. David joins the District with over 23 years of experience in public education. He started his career in Utah before moving to Washington state where he has since been with Federal Way Public Schools.

    David began his career as an English and U.S. History teacher focusing on Japanese and World Language, then moved on to become a middle and high school principal, and most recently, the Chief Human Resources Officer in Federal Way. He brings a wealth of experience as an instructional leader, leading human resources, building academic and instructional programming, and has a sophisticated understanding of how to build and implement systems. 

    Regardless of position, David believes that the key to success is positive relationships and leadership grounded in integrity, compassion, consistency, coaching, and courage. With David’s rich background as an instructional leader and as a Chief Human Resources Officer, he’s the perfect person to oversee Human Resources and Student Services.

    “David is a wonderful leader who is committed to education,” said Superintendent Dr. Laurie Dent. “He understands the importance of building positive relationships, being compassionate and keeps student success at the heart of everything he does. He is a perfect fit to our Sumner-Bonney Lake family.”

    David is a Pacific Northwest native. He grew up in Auburn, and has lived in our Sumner-Bonney Lake community since 2002. He and his wife Ady have four children: Savvy, age 20; Mathew, age 17; Logan, age 14, and Grey, age 10. In his free time, he enjoys reading, running, travel, woodworking, and playing the drums.

    David will be starting as Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources and Student Services on July 1.

    Lakeridge Middle School math teacher receives NBCT

    Congratulations to Lakeridge Middle School math teacher Dan Lysne who recently received his credentials as a National Board Certified Teacher!

    Dan makes a difference in the lives of SBLSD students in-person as part of the District’s hybrid learning model and in the Distance Learning Academy. He also teaches Integrated Performing Arts and is an advisor to drama and strategy game clubs. If you walk past his classroom during the passing period, you might hear him playing his guitar and connecting with students.

    Dan is the only candidate this year in SBLSD who earned the NBCT credential. Thank you Dan for your service to the students and families in our District!

    National Board Certified Teachers are nationally recognized, accomplished teachers who earn the most respected certification in K-12 education, helping advance the quality of teaching and learning in our District. NBCT is a voluntary credential that goes beyond state requirements.

    SBLSD is a National Board Accomplished District. This is achieved when at least 20 percent of district teachers are nationally board certified. SBLSD has an impressive 94 teachers across the district with National Board Certification!

    READY! for Kindergarten spring registration now open for in-person and virtual sessions

    Registration is now open to attend the READY! for Kindergarten spring program! This free program, for parents and caregivers of children birth to age five, provides tools to prepare children for kindergarten. During these sessions, you’ll learn important information specific to your child’s age on how they learn, grow, and receive essential take-home tools and activities to make learning easy and fun. Families who are new to READY! will learn more at an orientation prior to the class sessions. Registration is required. Class sessions will be held in-person and virtually.

    • May 17: 6:30-8 p.m. at Donald Eismann Elementary
    • May 19: 6:30-8 p.m. at Maple Lawn Elementary
    • May 25: 6:30-8 p.m. (Virtual on Zoom) 

    Orientation for new families will be held from 6-6:30 p.m. prior to the scheduled sessions. 

    District health and safety protocols must be followed for the in-person sessions on May 17 and May 19. All attendees ages 3+ and facilitators must wear a mask and practice 6-foot social distancing. Attendees will also complete an attestation form prior to entering the class, and will have their temperature taken upon entry. 

    Participants in the virtual class will receive the Zoom information prior to the class.

    Register online here:  readyforkindergarten.org/sumner where you will be asked to create an account prior to registering.

    Find more information at sumnersd.org/ready, or email Annette Bowen at annette_bowen@sumnersd.org.

    Summer School registration opening soon for students in grades 8-12

    Students in grades 8-12 can soon register for Summer School, a great opportunity for students to retrieve credit or to get ahead on some elective credits. This year, families can select hybrid in-person or full distance learning for Summer School.

    Summer School begins July 6 and will end on Aug. 5. Registration will open by 8 a.m. on May 19. The last day to register is June 30.

    The Summer School registration fee is $100. The registration fee for students who qualify for reduced-price lunch is $50 and students who qualify for free lunch have a $25 registration fee. Students and families facing financial hardships should reach out to their school counselor for assistance. For more information on Summer School, please visit our website.

    School Board meeting highlights 

    Here are highlights from the School Board meeting held on April 21. Find highlights from previous Board meetings here.

    Donations Accepted

    • Invest-Ed - All in WA Digital Equity Initiative has donated $7,270 to support SBLSD technology. 
    • Pierce County Connected Funding Committee has donated $15,000 to support access to vaccinations for SBLSD community members. 
    • Arlene Stebbins has donated $4,000 to the Sumner-Bonney Lake Family Center to help support families in need. 

    Adopted

    • Resolution No. 13/20-21: Emergency Waiver of Certain Graduation Requirements
    • Resolution No. 14/20-21: Authorizing Reduction-in-Force if Necessary

    Presentations

    • Sumner High School Pool Condition Update
    • Strategic Plan Update

    Reports

    Meeting Recording

    Upcoming Meetings 

    Meetings are held virtually at 6 p.m. Agendas and Zoom links are published a day prior to each meeting.

    • May 11 (Study Session)
    • May 18 (Board Meeting)

    Walk-up vaccination event at Sumner High on Saturday

    This Saturday, the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department is hosting a walk-up COVID-19 vaccination event from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Sumner High School (1701 Main St.). The health department will be administering 1,500 first doses of the Moderna vaccine for anyone 18 years or older. Click here to make an appointment.

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  • SBLSD Family News: 4/15/21

    Posted by SBLSD on 4/15/2021

    SBLSD remains with six feet social distance for remainder of school year; prepares for changes in summer, fall

    Prior to spring break, we shared news about the state’s new guidance, which gives school districts the option to reduce social distancing from six feet to three feet among students in classrooms. (Six feet distance is still required between staff and students, and in activities such as lunch, band/choir and PE.)

    After carefully reviewing the guidance, analyzing operational impacts and consulting with the School Board, the District has decided to remain with six feet social distancing for the remainder of the school year.

    At the April 14 School Board special meeting, administrators presented various factors that would require significant changes to operations in order to allow what would ultimately be 11 to 13 additional days of in-person learning. Factors include transportation, lunch, scheduling, switch in learning formats, classroom furniture, labor agreements, special education, and safety expenses.

    After the presentation, School Board members suggested that the District should stay the course in its current operations, and instead focus efforts on making changes for social distance reductions that would take effect in the summer and fall.

    The District is currently planning for a variety of summer programs that will support student academic learning and social-emotional well-being in addition to providing opportunities at the high school level for initial credit and credit retrieval to ensure students have every opportunity to graduate on time.

    We thank our staff, students and families for their continued support amid ever-changing guidance, and their compliance to protocols that help keep our school environments safe.

    No changes for schools amid Pierce County’s move to Phase 2

    Schools are not affected by Pierce County’s move back to Phase 2, which takes effect April 16. As long as schools can demonstrate the ability to limit COVID-19 transmission in the school environment, the number of case counts have no bearing on the ability to continue in-person learning.

    Athletics, however, fall under Phase 2 restrictions, which include different guidelines for face coverings and spectators. 

    • Face coverings: Participants in baseball, fastpitch and boys soccer must wear masks while both training and competing. Track & field participants wear their masks only when training. 
    • Spectators: The maximum number of people allowed in a facility includes athletes in addition and spectators. In SBLSD, the maximum number is 300 people at our high school stadiums, and 200 for baseball/fastpitch fields. 

    Longtime Transportation employee promoted to Director

    We’re excited to announce that longtime Transportation Department employee Pam Knapp has been named Director of the department, overseeing a fleet of 128 vehicles and 58 staff members.

    With the district for 29 years, Pam rose up the ranks from Substitute Bus Driver, Driver, Driver Trainer, Head Driver Trainer and most recently Router. In addition to working with our District, Pam has served on the Washington State Education Transportation Committee.

    In Pam’s spare time, she enjoys outdoor activities, such as riding her Harley, cycling, camping, skiing and golfing. She is married and is a very proud mom of two adult daughters with her first grandchild on the way.

    BLHS, SHS students place at FCCLA state competition

    Congratulations to students from Bonney Lake and Sumner high schools who had success at the FCCLA state competition! 

    • Claire Fruehauf & Shelby Sjoblom (BLHS): Hospitality, Recreation and Tourism, Level 3: 1st Place. Created a restaurant concept, menu and website marketing for an Italian restaurant. 
    • Dylan Lanz & Gigi Osborn (BLHS): Entrepreneurship: 1st Place. Researched the creation of a recreation business in our community and created the concept, budget and marketing for a gymnastics center for young children.
    • Hailey Littlefield & Grace Pearson (BLHS): Hospitality, Recreation and Tourism, Level 2: 1st Place. Created and researched making a fast food restaurant called Mondo Pizza and Pasta, which included a menu and website.
    • Lily Hoopes & Samra Young (BLHS): Chapter Service Project Portfolio: 1st Place. Coordinated two food drives to help the Bonney Lake Food Bank during COVID-19. This included the donations from the BLHS Holiday Food Drive.
    • Paige Littlefield (BLHS): Repurpose and Redesign: 1st Place. Designed and created a memory chest for sports memorabilia made from recycled items.
    • Callia Cartwright & Isabelle Tobin (BLHS): National Programs in Action: 3rd Place. Partnered with DAWN to get training and help provide assistance to victims of domestic violence. 
    • Christine Grant & Abby Mcginnis (SHS): Focus on Children: 1st Place and earned gold. They partnered with a local elementary school librarian for a reading mentorship program. 
    • Lauren Bloomquist & Ashley Naccarato (SHS): Sustainability Challenge: 2nd Place and earned gold. Conducted research about microplastics and shared out ways to promote recycling in the community. 
    • Chris Sather (SHS): Chapter Service Project Portfolio: 2nd Place and earned gold. Collected supplies to make homeless packs and distributed them to the community.

    Congratulations also goes to Zoey Peterson, Jackson Fay and Gracie Sather, whose projects are advancing to the national level to compete!

    • Zoey Peterson & Jackson Fay (SHS): Instructional Video for teaching students how to have success during distance learning.
    • Gracie Sather (SHS): Instructional Video for online STAR event, “How to Live a Healthy Lifestyle with Positivity.”

    We are so proud of how these students are representing our District, and we look forward to learning the results from the national competition in June.

    Board meeting highlights include Heritage Spanish program, impacts of new social distancing guidance

    Here are highlights from the School Board special meeting held on April 14. Find highlights from previous Board meetings here.

    Presentations

    Reports 

    Meeting Recording

    Upcoming Meetings 

    Meetings are held virtually at 6 p.m. Agendas and Zoom links are published a day prior to each meeting.

    • April 21 (Board Meeting)
    • May 11 (Study Session)

    Still time to apply for financial aid

    With all the disruption caused by COVID-19, college or career training after high school is more important than ever. Filing a financial aid application gives you more options for the future. There’s still time to apply for this coming fall.

    There’s more financial aid available than ever before through the new Washington College Grant (WCG), which gives money to additional students for different kinds of education after high school.

    In Washington, there are two ways to apply for financial aid. U.S. citizens and eligible non-citizens can apply with the federal FAFSA form. People who can't file the FAFSA—due to immigration status or other issues with federal aid—can apply for state aid, including WCG, using the WASFA.
    Learn more, get support, and apply for financial aid at wsac.wa.gov/apply.

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  • SBLSD Family News: 4/1/21

    Posted by SBLSD on 4/1/2021

    BLHS junior selected as delegate for Congress of Future Medical Leaders

    Congratulations to Bonney Lake High School junior Brock Holcomb! Brock was nominated as a delegate for the Congress of Future Medical Leaders, a program for high school honor students interested in becoming a physician or working in the medical research field.

    Brock, a three-sport athlete and honors student, was nominated by Dr. Mario Capecchi, winner of the Nobel Prize of Medicine and the Science Director of the National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists. Brock will join other student delegates from across the country in the two-day program where he will virtually meet with mentors and engage with other delegates about the future of medicine.

    Read more about Brock’s accomplishments, and why he is personally interested in the healthcare field in this feature from KING5.

    Possible disruption to bus service April 2

    It’s no joke that we’re still experiencing a severe bus driver shortage. If your child rides the bus to school, there’s a possibility that you could see a change in bus service tomorrow, April 2. This change could be in the form of earlier or later pickup/dropoff times, a different bus number or, as a last resort, possibly no transportation at all. As soon as we know if your child’s route is affected, we will send a robocall to families with as much advance notice we can give.

    April calendar and menus now available

    In case you missed it, our print-friendly District calendar and menus for April are posted on the website!

    This month’s key dates include spring break, the starting date for Unit #2 of middle school intramurals, school board meetings and more. Take a look and download the calendar here.

    The April menus for elementary, middle and high school are also posted. The menus include options for breakfast and lunch. Click here to view interactive school meal menus, which include nutritional information, allergens, and more.

    Spring Break reminder

    Spring Break is next week, April 5-9. There will be no curbside meal service.

    Lunch lady Debbie Grace retires after 35 years at Maple Lawn

    Congratulations to Debbie Grace, who is retiring after 35 years of food service at Maple Lawn Elementary! Spending her entire SBLSD career at Maple Lawn, Debbie has seen a lot of changes, including a couple of building remodels and about a dozen principals. When she started in 1986, she shared kitchen space with the District Bakery and wore a uniform of black slacks and a white blouse.

    Throughout various changes over the years, what has remained is Debbie’s love for her job and the students she serves. From pizza to chicken nuggets, she notes that kids’ favorite foods have stayed the same. Lunch menus have always been geared toward what kids like to eat, with the addition of fresh fruits, vegetables and salad bars.

    Debbie is part of five generations who have lived and gone to school in Sumner. Fun fact: In 1920, her great-grandfather founded Sunset Chevrolet, a longtime partner and supporter of the District. The one thing Debbie won’t miss about work is waking up early. She’s looking forward to spending time at her home on five acres gardening, tending to her chickens and playing with her four Boston terriers. Debbie and her husband (high school sweetheart, Larry) will also enjoy the ability to go out in their boat more often to fish in area lakes, and after the pandemic, take a cruise and travel. 

    View kindergarten experience through virtual tours

    Kindergarten registration is open for the 2021-22 school year! Each of our elementary schools created virtual video tours of the kindergarten experience in their building. Take a look at the videos for each school to learn more about the staff, classrooms and programs.

    If you know a child who will be five years old on or before Aug. 31, make sure they register! The sooner a child is enrolled, the better we can keep you informed. The registration process is all online and can be completed here.

    Seeking CTE, Career advisory council members

    Are you a working professional interested in advising the District on various aspects relating to Career and Technical Education and Career Pathways? We’re looking for volunteers to serve on one of two advisory councils for the 2021-22 school year: Program Specific Advisory Councils and General Advisory Council. Career areas of interest include agriculture, arts, business, healthcare, hospitality, human services, information technology, skilled trades and STEM.

    With the overarching purpose to provide direction and guidance on CTE programs and career pathways, advisory council activities and commitments vary. Here’s an overview of some of the key responsibilities for both councils: 

    • Provide information to update, modify, expand, and improve the quality of CTE programs and access to career pathways
    • Support and strengthen the partnerships between business, labor, the community, and education 
    • Make recommendations that will strengthen CTE curriculum and career pathways 
    • Identify and validate academic and occupational competencies, determining priorities, and review and evaluate programs.

    Please fill out an application to indicate your interest. Application deadline is May 15. For more information, visit our website or contact us cte@sumnersd.org.

    Collective bargaining happening this spring

    This spring, the District and four employee groups will enter into negotiations and/or discussions to update collective bargaining agreements or handbooks. SBLSD is committed to meeting with its employee groups in good faith and we look forward to establishing fair collective bargaining agreements or handbooks where employees feel valued, appreciated and respected.

    Contract groups 

    Contracts are expiring for these employee groups, who will be negotiating or discussing new contracts or handbooks in the coming months:

    Learn about meetings, updates and related news at sumnersd.org/bargaining

    Bargaining and the budget

    Bargaining and budget go hand in hand, with discussions often including financial aspects of contracts. Learn about the District’s budget at sumnersd.org/budget

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  • SBLSD Family News: 3/26/21

    Posted by SBLSD on 3/26/2021

    Spring 2021 attestation forms due now

    Spring 2021 attestation forms are due before hybrid students may return to school buildings next week. If you’ve already filled out your child’s form, thank you! 

    Have you not yet completed the form? In order for your child to enter the classroom, this form must be completed by March 30 (hybrid group A) or March 31 (hybrid group B). The Spring 2021 attestation form will take effect immediately and is good for the remainder of the school year. Find details at sumnersd.org/attestation

    State follows CDC’s K-12 physical distancing guidance

    In a March 25 press conference, Gov. Inlsee announced that Washington state K-12 school health and safety protocols will change to follow recently-revised guidance from the CDC regarding a reduction in physical distancing.

    While the requirement to implement a reduction in physical distancing doesn’t take effect until the summer, school districts have the option now to make changes effective for the rest of the school year. Our District is taking time to carefully study the new guidance and work with union groups. We will keep you posted on our plans and timeline for any changes.

    Progress, action on development of new strategic plan 

    The process to develop our District’s next strategic plan is well underway! We’ve completed several meetings, retreats and focus groups with various stakeholders who are invested in this monthslong process, which will result in a clear and common direction to achieve student success.

    Relying on the alignment and consensus of diverse voices, the planning process keeps student learning at the core. So far, members of the school board, superintendent’s cabinet and Equity Advisory Council have met virtually to review data, share priorities and engage in meaningful conversations.

     Here’s an overview of just some strategic planning actions: 

    • Discovered and discussed key qualities of a graduate
    • Reviewed and analyzed equity data; discussed solutions to educational equity disparities 
    • Conducted student focus groups (elementary, middle, high, English Learner); analyzed, discussed results

    Next month, the entire 150-member Strategic Plan Committee will meet as one group to further develop this critical roadmap to success, which will include a new mission, vision and values. Stay tuned as we keep you updated on our progress and offer ways all of our families and community can offer input.

    Spring break reminder

    Reminder: Spring Break is April 5 -9. There will be no curbside meal service.

    April calendar now available

    We are in the last few months of the school year and our April calendar is now available. Key dates include spring break, the starting date for Unit #2 of middle school intramurals, school board meetings and more. Take a look and download the calendar here

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  • SBLSD Family News: 3/19/21

    Posted by SBLSD on 3/19/2021

    Special message from Superintendent Dent

    As we close out an exciting week of bringing back our last group of students for in-person learning, I'm envisioning the faces of learners who brought joy and exuberance back to our classrooms!

    Just as we were celebrating the return of our students, I was deeply saddened by the shootings in Atlanta that killed eight people — six of them Asian women. This horrifying attack might have happened thousands of miles away, but the impact can be felt right here in our Sumner-Bonney Lake community.

    I immediately thought of our children, families and staff who are members of the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities. I recognize that many are feeling fearful, unsettled, and unsafe. Once again, I will tell you that in the Sumner-Bonney Lake School District, we denounce racism and acts of violence against any person due to their race, ethnicity or identity. We will not tolerate hate speech or harmful actions in our schools.

    I have a deep commitment to each and every one of our students. Our team's responsibility, every day, is to ensure the safety of your children, as well as their academic success.

    If you need support during this time, please reach out to your school. Learn more about the work we’re doing on racial equity at sumnersd.org/equity.

    Sincerely,

    Laurie Dent, Ph.D.

    New government requirements, recommendations for school districts

    A lot has happened in just a week’s time with changes from our government relating to COVID-19 and school districts. With the governor’s recent proclamation that includes in-person learning requirements, and a recommendation by the CDC to reduce social distancing, the District is carefully reviewing how this may impact our students and schools.

    Governor’s Proclamation

    March 12, 2021: In response to protecting the mental and behavioral health of children and youth, Gov. Inslee issued an emergency proclamation, which orders all school districts to provide each student the opportunity to learn in person at their school for no fewer than two days per week or for at least 30 percent of each student’s average weekly instructional hours (unless the student and their family choose to learn in a distance format).

    We’re happy to share that our District is already adhering to this order. Currently, all of our students in the hybrid model are attending school in person two days a week, receiving 37 to 42 percent of in-person instructional hours.

    CDC Social Distancing Recommendations

    March 19, 2021: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) changed its recommendation on COVID-19 social distancing in schools from six feet to three feet. The District now must wait for follow-up guidance from the state Department of Health and the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department before moving forward with planning and action.

    Implementing a reduction in social distancing requires considerable planning and coordination to ensure compliance with all other health requirements, as well as collaboration with our union groups. Beyond simply pushing desks closer together, the District will need to plan and prepare for classroom occupancy, schedules, food service, busing and more.

    As soon as we learn more about the new social distancing recommendations, we’ll be sure and communicate a plan and timeline for any potential changes.

    New last day of school and spring break reminder

    Please take note of an important calendar update and reminder for Spring Break.

    • Update: Due to a school day closure on Jan. 13 from a weather-related power outage, the District has pushed back the last day of school to Wednesday, June 23.

    • Reminder: There is no school for Spring Break from April 5 - 9. There will also be no curbside meal service.


    Visit the calendar page on the website for more information on District events and calendar updates.
     
    Spring 2021 attestation forms required for in-person learning

    Is your child in the hybrid learning model? If yes, we need all families to please complete the Spring 2021 attestation form in order to continue in-building attendance after March 26. A critical part in maintaining required health and safety measures, the form attests that your child has no symptoms of COVID-19 and has not been in contact with someone who has COVID-19 symptoms.

    If there is no form on file for your child, they will not be able to enter the classroom. Deadline to complete the Spring 2021 attestation form:

    • Hybrid Group A: March 30

    • Hybrid Group B: March 31

    The quickest and most efficient way to complete the form is online through Family Access. You may also print and sign a hard copy of the form (Spanish available) and bring it to your child’s school. Emailed, faxed or electronically-signed forms are not accepted.

    The Spring 2021 attestation form will take effect immediately and is good for the remainder of the school year. Find details about how to complete the form, including step-by-step instructions, at sumnersd.org/attestation.

    Thank you for helping us keep our schools safe for students and staff. If you need assistance with the attestation form, please contact your child’s school.
     
    All grades now back in buildings with return of juniors and seniors

    On Tuesday and Wednesday, we welcomed back in-person hybrid students in 11th and 12th grade to Bonney Lake and Sumner high schools.

    Take a look at this slideshow to get a glimpse into what this day looked like for our juniors and seniors.

    We now have all grades, K-12, back in school buildings for in-person learning! Thank you to our students, families and staff for making this possible as we adjust to safety protocols and procedures.

    Kick off for middle school intramural activities

    Intramural activities began this week in our middle schools! Planned to last through June 4, the intramural program is divided into three-week units that focus on different activities.

    During Unit 1, student athletes are participating in ultimate frisbee and track and conditioning. Activities for Units 2 and 3 are still to be determined based on state health guidelines and student interest, but they could include soccer, volleyball, basketball and flag football.

    There’s still time to register your child. Here are details about middle school intramural activities:

    • Students participate on the two days a week they attend school in person. Distance learning students are scheduled certain days based on their last name.

    • Student physicals are recommended, but not required.

    • All participants and staff are required to answer health screening questions and wear masks at all times.

    • There are no competitions or games with other schools.

    • Spectators are not allowed on the field and must remain in their cars.

    If you would like your child to participate in intramurals, please contact your child’s school to fill out a form and get more information.

    Annual student leadership conference takes place virtually

    The 13th Annual SERVUS Conference took place today with students attending virtually from our school district and all over the state. The Sumner High School student-planned and produced conference teaches students about servant leadership, giving them the inspiration and tools to become a positive influence in their schools and communities.

    Broadcast live from Calvary Community Church, thousands of conference attendees heard from local and nationally-recognized speakers who shared their passion for, and experiences in, leading and serving others. Student panels and class discussions took place throughout the event for the opportunity of real-time conversations and reflections on learnings.

    We very much thank our partners for their donations of money and time to help make this valuable event possible. Learn more about the SERVUS Conference.
     
    School Board honors Bonney Lake HS parent leader with Golden Apple
     
    The March Golden Apple Community Partner Award was a big surprise to recipient Shelley Day! While Shelley doesn’t prefer the limelight, she’s a rock star leader behind the scenes of Bonney Lake High School's Parent Panther Pride booster group. Even after her five children graduated, she’s still actively involved in a variety of activities that help enrich experiences for students. A Panther through and through, Shelley is described as a selfless leader who works tirelessly for others. We thank Shelley for her years of involvement in the Bonney Lake community with the high school, and also in middle schools and community recreations programs.
     
    Tele-health counseling available to eligible students on asynchronous learning days

    Is your child experiencing stress, anxiety or becoming emotionally overwhelmed? This has been a year like none other with a pandemic that has understandably caused mental health challenges for some of our students. To increase access to behavioral health services for students and families, the District has partnered with MultiCare Behavioral Health and Consejo Counseling and Referral Service. Each agency provides tele-health counseling opportunities offered during students’ asynchronous Monday school schedule.

    MultiCare Behavioral Health

    Eligibility:

    • Sumner High School students who have private or state insurance

    • Students with only state insurance attending Bonney Lake High School, Lakeridge Middle School, Mountain View Middle School and Sumner Middle School and Daffodil Valley Elementary

    Consejo Counseling and Referral Service

    Eligibility:

    • Any SBLSD student with state insurance may access Consejo behavioral health services

    Other behavioral health resources

    For students not eligible for our partner agency tele-health services, families with private/commercial insurance may find other behavioral health resources through Kids’ Mental Health Pierce County.

    For more information about telehealth counseling services with our partner agencies or for help finding other counseling resources, please contact your child’s school counselor.

    Longtime SBLSD administrators set to retire this year

    This is the time of year when we typically learn news of retirements. Here are two especially notable retirements of longtime administrators who’ve collectively worked for the District for 66 years.

    • Bill Gaines, Assistant Superintendent of Operations

    Prior to coming to Central Office, Bill served as Assistant Principal and Principal for more than 20 years at Sumner High School, where he was instrumental in cultivating and leading an award-winning Spartan culture with Valley pride that remains strong.

    • Tim Thomsen, Athletic Director

    Since beginning with our District in September 1980 as a student teacher, Tim served a variety of roles prior to his current position, which include: long-term substitute, teacher, coach, traffic safety coordinator, ASB advisor, athletic coordinator, stadium manager and part-time assistant principal.

    Their servant leadership and valuable institutional knowledge will be a big loss for our District. Their last day is June 30. We know there are community members and former employees who will want to celebrate their retirements. Please stay tuned for announcements of events (in a format to be determined).

    School Board meeting highlights include updates on construction, COVID-19

    The March 17 School Board meeting included the following presentations and reports. Read more highlights from this meeting and previous meetings here.

    Presentations Reports Meeting Recording
     
    Recording (passcode: @d.6BxQ0)
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  • SBLSD Family News: 3/12/21

    Posted by SBLSD on 3/12/2021

    Weekly Update: High School In-Person Learning

    We’ve had an amazing week welcoming back 9th- and 10th-grade students for in-person learning! For a look inside our schools this week, watch videos of 9th-grade first day and 10th-grade first day

    Schedule
    Next week 11th- and 12th-grade students will begin in-person learning, marking an exciting time when hybrid students in all grade levels will be back inside our buildings!

    • March 16: Grades 9-12 (A)
    • March 17: Grades 9-12 (B) 

    Attestation form
    It’s critical that all families with students in the In-Person Hybrid Learning model complete an attestation form for each child. Forms are valid for a set period of time. Completed and submitted attestation forms are a requirement for students to attend in-building learning. A new Spring 2021 attestation form, good for the remainder of the school year, is now available in Family Access.

    Webinars
    View recorded webinars that highlight in-person learning schedules, safety requirements and protocols, and more. 

    Bus information
    Due to a severe bus driver shortage, it’s highly likely that some bus routes will be affected to some degree on a daily basis. Any given route on any given day could experience a different bus number, earlier or later pick-up/drop-off times, and unfortunately the potential of no bus transportation at all. There will also be some logistical changes that affect bus riders who live in the Lakeridge Middle School area. Use our online bus lookup tool for information specific to your child. For more information or questions, please call the Transportation Department at (253) 891-6400.

    Families of high school students receive these weekly updates as separate messages with additional information. Read the full message and access previous updates pertaining to in-person learning at the high school level.

    Completion of Spring 2021 attestation form required to continue in-person learning

    It’s critical that all families with students in the hybrid learning model complete an attestation form for each child. Completed and submitted forms, valid for a set period of time, are required for students to attend in-building learning. A new Spring 2021 attestation form, good for the remainder of the school year, is now available in Family Access. You may also print a hard copy of the form to sign and bring in to your school. All students must have the Spring 2021 form on file to continue in-person attendance after March 26. If your child has yet to begin in-person learning, complete the Spring 2021 form, which will take effect immediately. If you need assistance with the form, please contact your child’s school.

    COVID-19 health and safety reminders

    It’s been exciting as we welcome back more and more students each week for in-person learning! In doing everything possible to keep our schools safe, here’s a reminder about our COVID-19 Safety Plan, which includes: 

    • Attestations
    • Entry protocols
    • Face coverings
    • Positive COVID-19 case protocols
    • Meals
    • Transportation
    • Cleaning and disinfecting 

    Partnerships offer counseling services to students, families

    Is your child experiencing stress, anxiety or becoming emotionally overwhelmed? This has been a year like none other with a pandemic that has understandably caused mental health challenges for some of our students. To increase access to behavioral health services for students and families, the District has partnered with MultiCare Behavioral Health and Consejo Counseling and Referral Service. Each agency provides tele-health counseling opportunities offered during students’ asynchronous Monday school schedule.

    MultiCare Behavioral Health

    Eligibility: 

    • Sumner High School students who have private or state insurance
    • Students with only state insurance attending Bonney Lake High School, Lakeridge Middle School, Mountain View Middle School and Sumner Middle School and Daffodil Valley Elementary

    Consejo Counseling and Referral Service

    Eligibility: 

    • Any SBLSD student with state insurance may access Consejo behavioral health services

    Other behavioral health resources 

    For students not eligible for our partner agency tele-health services, families with private/commercial insurance may find other behavioral health resources through Kids’ Mental Health Pierce County.

    For more information about telehealth counseling services with our partner agencies or for help finding other counseling resources, please contact your child’s school counselor.

    Daylight saving time begins on Sunday

    Daylight saving time begins this Sunday, March 14 at 2 a.m. Remember to turn your clocks ahead one hour before you go to bed Saturday night. Spring is right around the corner!

    Parent-teacher elementary conferences this month; virtual, evening schedules

    Spring elementary parent-teacher conferences will take place virtually via Zoom in the evenings of March 23-25 and March 30-April 1. Whether you’re in a distance or in-person learning model, families are encouraged to schedule time to connect with teachers if your child is struggling academically, socially or emotionally, or if you have any other general concerns.

    Unlike previous conferences, there will be no early dismissal or disruption to the teaching and learning schedule. Conferences will take place after school. Please look for detailed information from your child’s school on how to sign up for a conference. In the meantime, mark your calendars for these dates:

    • March 23-25
    • March 30-April 1

    If you have questions, please contact your child’s school.

    Bonney Lake HS students take home art awards

    Congratulations to three outstanding student artists at Bonney Lake High School for winning awards at Puget Sound Educational Service District's Regional High School Art Show!

    • 12th grader Taylor Swensen created a watercolor and ink piece, "Liberty and Justice for All," which was selected to receive a PSESD Staff Choice Award.
    • 11th grader Laurynn Riley created a watercolor and ink piece, "Mental Illness," which was selected to receive a Pierce County Honorable Mention Award.
    • 10th grader Iris Rogel won three top awards for her colored pencil portrait, "Baby Leo." Iris's piece was selected as a Regional Winner and will advance to the State Superintendent's High School Art Show on May 20. In addition to Regional Winner, "Baby Leo" received the Pierce County Executive Award and the Board of Director's Honorable Mention.

    The artwork will be on display at the PSESD Virtual Award Ceremony on March 31.

    BLHS DECA students advance to international conference

    Three Panthers from Bonney Lake High School placed at the state’s DECA Career Development Conference and will be advancing to the international conference!

    Congratulations to Skylar Gallucci, Kailey Chan and Amanda Olive!

    Skylar Gallucci, Hospitality and Tourism Professional Selling, 1st Place
    Skylar assumed the role of a sales representative for a hospitality and tourism marketing firm and recorded a sales pitch on video to present their digital marketing services to the client.

    Kailey Chan, Skylar Gallucci & Amanda Olive, Business Solutions Project, 5th Place
    Kailey, Skylar and Amanda identified and solved a problem for a local business through a project management process. The group documented this process by writing a 20-page paper and creating an accompanying video presentation. 

    All three students will virtually attend the International Career Development Conference next month with 20,000 other attendees from around the world.

    Thank you, classified staff!

    Throughout the District, we celebrate our classified staff during National Education Support Professionals Week. Thank you to all of our amazing staff who work in the following positions or groups:

    • Health Services
    • Substitutes
    • Office Professionals
    • Maintenance
    • Paraeducators
    • Custodial
    • Technology
    • Security
    • Transportation
    • Child Nutrition
    • Grounds
    • Other Services

    You are the backbone of our operations and we are grateful for you!

    National School Breakfast Week

    Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and we celebrated with National School Breakfast Week! 

    Since March 2020, we have proudly served over 253,000 bagged meals through our curbside service. Every meal bag includes a healthy breakfast and lunch. Due to COVID-19, these meals are free to any student 18 and younger. 

    Even though we are returning all grade levels to hybrid in-person learning, we are still offering these curbside meal bags every Monday from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Lakeridge Middle School, Mountain View Middle School and Sumner High School.

    Thank you to our Child Nutrition staff for making sure our students’ minds and bodies are fueled every day. Now that's what we call scoring big!

    March 10 study session highlights

    Study sessions are opportunities for the School Board to learn more about specific topics. No decisions or actions are made at study sessions. Here are highlights from the March 10 meeting:

    Presentations

    Meeting recording

    Next meeting

    • March 17 at 6 p.m. (link and agenda posted a day prior)
    • Audience Comments (submit online by 5 p.m. the day of the meeting)
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  • SBLSD Family News: 3/4/21

    Posted by SBLSD on 3/4/2021

    Weekly Update: High School In-Person Learning

    We hope our weekly updates on the status of the transition to in-person learning at the high school level have been helpful to you in planning for this exciting time that we’ve been eagerly waiting for all year. We’re thrilled to see students inside our buildings starting next week!

    Schedule
    Here’s the schedule for when high school students in the In-Person Hybrid learning model will physically return to the school building: 

    • March 9: Grade 9 (Hybrid Group A) 
    • March 10: Grade 9 (Hybrid Group B)
    • March 11: Grade 9 (A)  & Grade 10 (A)
    • March 12: Grade 9 (B) & Grade 10 (B)  
    • March 15: Regular Monday Schedule (advisory and asynchronous work) 
    • March 16: Grades 9-12 (A)
    • March 17: Grades 9-12 (B) 
    • March 18: Grades 9-12 (A)
    • March 19: Grades 9-12 (B) 

    Attestation form
    It’s critical that all families with students in the In-Person Hybrid Learning model complete an attestation form for each child once every quarter. Completion of this form is required before entering the classroom. The preferred and most efficient method to fill out the form is through Family Access. You may also download, print and sign a hard copy of the form (English) (Spanish) and bring it to the school. If you need assistance completing the form, please call your school.

    Student/family webinars
    Bonney Lake and Sumner high schools are hosting webinars for students and families to learn what to expect when returning to the buildings for in-person learning, and schedules for distance learning. 

    Bus information
    Find details about your child’s bus stop, number and times using our online bus stop search tool. Bus information for high school students will be available March 8.

    Due to a severe bus driver shortage, it’s highly likely that some bus routes will be affected to some degree on a daily basis. Any given route on any given day could experience a different bus number, earlier or later pick-up/drop-off times, and unfortunately the potential of no bus transportation at all. 

    Read the full message and access previous updates pertaining to in-person learning at the high school level.

    Parent-teacher elementary conferences this month; virtual, evening schedules

    Spring elementary parent-teacher conferences will take place virtually via Zoom in the evenings of March 23-25 and March 30-April 1. Whether you’re in a distance or in-person learning model, families are encouraged to schedule time to connect with teachers if your child is struggling academically, socially or emotionally, or if you have any other general concerns.

    Unlike previous conferences, there will be no early dismissal or disruption to the teaching and learning schedule. Conferences will take place after school. Please look for detailed information from your child’s school on how to sign up for a conference. In the meantime, mark your calendars for these dates:

    • March 23-25
    • March 30-April 1

    If you have questions, please contact your child’s school.

    Curbside meal changes in effect now

    Starting on Monday, March 1, we made changes to our free curbside meal service. Meals will still be free to all children, whether eating on-site at school or picking up curbside.

    Here are the changes:

    • Multi-day meals packs will be offered curbside one day a week on Mondays (except April 5 and May 31 due to no school). Two sizes of meal packs to choose from, one pack per child:
      • 3 Day Pack: For students attending school in person two days per week and eating school meals onsite.
      • 5 Day Pack: For students not eating at school, for full-time distance learners, or any child in the community aged 18 or younger, whether or not they are enrolled in the District.
    • Locations: Lakeridge Middle School, Mountain View Middle School, Sumner High School
    • Time: 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

    March breakfast and lunch menus

    In case you missed it, our print-friendly March menus for elementary, middle and high schools are posted on the website! Menus include options for breakfast and lunch. We also have interactive school meal menus that include nutritional information, allergens, and more. Click here to view the interactive menus.

    School bus riders complete bus evacuation drills

    To help ensure student safety on our buses, the District completed state-required school bus emergency evacuation drills this week. Bus drivers performed these drills March 3 and 4 in the morning when buses arrived at schools.

    During the 20-minute drill, students learned how to use the emergency exit doors, seek help, find a safe location away from the bus, and locate and use emergency equipment. Drivers and student helpers wore personal protective equipment when assisting other students.

    Pandemic EBT arrives this month

    Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) benefits are now available to eligible students in our District. P-EBT is money for food for meals students missed at school during the school day because of the pandemic. Benefits are available to students who are:

    • Eligible for free or reduced-price school meals AND
    • Enrolled in our school district this school year

    There is no need to apply to receive these benefits. Each eligible student will receive a P-EBT card in the mail this month. If your family has moved within the last two years, make sure your address on file with our District is up to date. The first payment of these benefits will arrive in the mail sometime in March.

    Students can continue to take part in free grab-and-go meal programs in our community and still get P-EBT. Learn more about our grab-and-go meal program.

    If you have questions about P-EBT, call the P-EBT Contact Center at 1-833-518-0282 or visit www.dshs.wa.gov/pebt.

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  • SBLSD Family News: 2/25/21

    Posted by SBLSD on 2/25/2021

    Weekly Update: High School In-Person Learning

    As predicted and planned for, COVID-19 case counts have dipped below the “about 200” case rate the state deems safe for when high school students can transition to in-person learning. As of Feb. 25, the 14-day case rate per 100,000 residents as of six days ago is 192.5.

    We are ready and eager to begin in-person learning starting with our first group of 9th-graders on March 9! If you haven’t already, view our Back-to-Building video and Safety Plan.

    Student / Family Webinars
    Bonney Lake and Sumner high schools are hosting webinars for students and families to learn what to expect when returning to the buildings for in-person learning, including safety protocols, expectations and schedules. Each school will send high school families detailed information about the webinars.

    • BLHS: Feb. 25 at 6 p.m. 
    • SHS: March 4 at 6 p.m. 
    • Elhi Hill High School Program TBD

    Read the full message and access previous updates pertaining to in-person learning at the high school level.

    L&I Report: District taking necessary steps to ensure safe return to buildings

    After a voluntary, District-requested safety consultation with L&I to review our COVID-19 Reopening Plan, the consultant states that the plan demonstrates SBLSD’s commitment to the health and safety of our students and staff. Read the full report.

    Noteworthy excerpt from the report
    “The reopening plan has put protocols in place when dealing with a student or staff member who experiences COVID-19 symptoms while at school. It is apparent the District is taking the steps necessary to ensure a safe return to school for all employees and students.”

    Help us monitor safety protocols
    As directed by L&I, the District will continue to routinely conduct self-inspections of our workplace and monitor the consistent use and effectiveness of health and safety protocols.

    Please help us! If you observe a safety-related violation or have a concern relating to COVID-19 practices, please use this form to report it. You will remain anonymous unless you choose to provide your contact information.

    If you haven’t already, view our Back-to-Building video and Safety Plan

    SBLSD partners with Seattle Children’s on COVID-19 testing program

    Adding another measure to help keep students and staff safe during this pandemic, the District is partnering with Seattle Children’s to bring a rapid COVID-19 testing program into our facilities. To start with, this voluntary testing will be only for staff. Right now we’re in the planning phase, but we hope to implement testing some time in March. Here’s an overview of what we know now:

    Testing

    • Free, rapid, low-tech, antigen test (about 15 minutes)
    • Anterior nasal self-administered swab
    • Voluntary test, available at first to staff only

    Logistics

    • Tests available at select sites throughout the District
    • Tests performed by District staff who will be trained, certified and monitored by Seattle Children’s
    • District provides the staffing, indoor space and materials 

    As soon as details are finalized, we’ll share more information.

    Help develop new strategic plan; sign up for committee by March 15

    The District is bringing together families, students, staff, partners and community members to develop a new strategic plan guided by a revised vision, mission and values. If you’re interested in serving on a strategic plan committee, please complete this short, five-question form by March 15. Committee members must commit to meeting virtually from 4:30-7 p.m. on April 12, 22, 29 and May 3. Learn more at www.sumnersd.org/strategicplan.

    Changes to curbside meal distribution

    As more students start in-person learning, we’re making changes to our free curbside meal service beginning March 1. Meals continue to be free to all children, whether eating on-site at school or picking up curbside.

    Here are the changes starting Monday, March 1:

    • Multi-day meals packs will be offered curbside one day a week on Mondays (except April 5 and May 31 due to no school). Two sizes of meal packs to choose from, one pack per child:
      • 3 Day Pack: For students attending school in person two days per week and eating school meals onsite.
      • 5 Day Pack: For students not eating at school, for full-time distance learners, or any child in the community aged 18 or younger, whether or not they are enrolled in the District.
    • Locations: Lakeridge Middle School, Mountain View Middle School, Sumner High School
    • Time: 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

    Pandemic EBT cards coming to families in March

    In a continued response to COVID-19, the federal government is again offering Pandemic EBT cards to eligible families. Referred to as P-EBT 2.0, this version of food assistance offers a set amount of money per child, per day based on the number of days a student attended school remotely or in person. P-EBT 2.0 is meant to replace meals that students would have normally received if not for disruptions to in-person learning during the 2020-21 school year.

    There is no application required. The District will automatically send cards to eligible students in March. We ask that families make sure their mailing address is up to date in Family Access.

    For more information, contact Child Nutrition Services: (253) 891-6450, child_nutrition@sumnersd.org.

    CTE student organizations offer real-life skills and experience 

    Throughout February, we’ve highlighted several aspects of our District’s CTE program. Here, we offer a student’s positive experience of becoming involved in a Career and Technical Student Organization (CTSO).

    Seniah Flesher, an FFA officer from Sumner High School, said she is grateful for the real life skills she has learned in FFA.

    "The cumulative experience of being a member of FFA has not only taught me real-life skills, but has broadened my understanding of the agricultural industry as a whole. Raising livestock is one of the many ways of getting involved in FFA, it has taught me the amount of responsibility it takes to care for animals as well as the overall agricultural experience. Some individual competitions include job interviews, prepared public speaking, and extemporaneous speaking. These individual competitions I competed in have given me the courage to talk in front of crowds and prepared me for work interviews in the future. Overall, I am very thankful for the insight and knowledge I have acquired from being a part of FFA and improving my real-life skills."

    Learn more about the District’s CTE program and how we’re preparing students for their future.

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