North Kitsap Vikaneer
Follow sports and news from across North Kitsap School District with Herald reporter Kipp Robertson.
North Kitsap School District Superintendent Patty Page is hosting the December Community Coffee Chat at Coffee Oasis Dec. 18, from 12:30-1:30 p.m., at Coffee Oasis.
The community is invited to talk with Page about the district and schools within during the informal meeting.
Coffee Oasis is located at 780 NE Iverson St., Poulsbo.
Back-to-back meetings are scheduled in the North Kitsap School District Office Boardroom Nov. 25.
The evening will begin with a special school board meeting scheduled from 5:30-6:30 p.m, followed by a Legislative Roundtable from 7-8:30 p.m.
After the special meeting, the board will host the roundtable with Senator Christine Rolfes, and Representatives Drew Hansen and Derek Kilmer. The three will discuss education issues and hold a Q&A period. The North Kitsap and Bainbridge school boards will attend. The public is welcome.
Hey, all you students in secondary education, there’s a job for you.
The Rolling Reader and STAR College Grant Program has tutor job openings at Poulsbo, Suquamish, and Wolfle elementary schools.
Rolling Reader has opening for qualified students from Kingston and Poulsbo middle schools, and Kingston and North Kitsap high schools. Students hired can earn money toward college.
Applicants must be at least 14 years old, have a 2.5 GPA, be fluent in English, pass a standard background screening check, follow school dress codes, and provide their own transportation.
The program is a college grant program that pays students $10 per hour to read with students who are reading below grade level. “STAR” tutors can earn $100 to $2,000 during the year towards their college or technical college tuition.
Last year, the program deposited more than $17,500 in funding to accounts for 42 STAR tutors.
To obtain an application for a tutor position, or find out how to be a donor to the program, contact Rolling Reader Coordinator Terri Day at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 360-396-3867.
North Kitsap School District administration is seeking residents of the north end of Kitsap to apply to a new advisory committee.
The Community Financial Advisory Committee will focus its efforts on long-range financial items and strategies that will help lead to recommendations to the school board.
Committee task and requirements will include:
- Serving in an advisory role regarding long-range district financial items
- Provide community perspective to the district in planning long-range financial strategies
- Collaborate with the director of finance, business and operations in developing fiscal recommendations
- Act as liaison to the community and facilitate at public town meetings
- Review levy and bond election scenarios and provide recommendations
Committee members must reside within the district, become educated in school finance, and maintain a broad focus for the commitment of identifying funding to meet the needs of students.
The public is invited to attend a study session on the 2013-14 budget for the North Kitsap School District.
The meeting begins at 6 p.m. in the administrative building, 18360 Caldart Ave. NE., Poulsbo.
The study session will be about one hour, where board members will discuss the proposed budget. There will be no public comment during the session.
Following their discussion, the board will listen to public comment. The comment period is expected to begin at 7 p.m.
If approved, the 2013-14 budget includes about $63.9 million in expenditures. The district expects to receive about $64.2 million in revenue. The district recently received nearly $2 million in added revenue from the state, which, among the bonuses, allowed staff that received pink slips to be rehired.
The 2013-14 budget will be adopted Aug. 22 during the regular board meeting.
The board will also hear comment on management items, which includes a policy on community involvement and a discussion on allowing students to register for more than six periods of classes (also known as zero period, or seventh period).
The board will recess into executive session for about one hour before adjourning the meeting.
The North Kitsap School Board meeting will be in the North Kitsap High School Commons Feb. 28 to accomodate the large number of people expected to attend.
The meeting begins at 5:15 p.m. with a board study session. The regular meeting will begin at 6 p.m.
The board is expected to vote on the school that will close, beginning in the 2013-14 school year.
There will be seating for about 300 people, according district staff.
There will be one last chance for public comment on the school closure Feb. 27. The special meeting will be in the Poulsbo Middle School Gymnasium, 2003 NE Hostmark St., Poulsbo. The meeting begins at 5:15 p.m., when the school board will immediately recess into executive session. The public comment period begins at 6 p.m. Signup sheets for anyone who wants to address the board will be available at 5:50 p.m.
After the comment period Feb. 27, the board will hold a discussion on school closure, and then recess back into executive session.
The public has its third opportunity to listen to discussion, and comment on, the coming school closure decision in the North Kitsap School District.
Wolfle Elementary will be the main topic of discussion Wednesday, Feb. 20, during the third and final public hearing. The North Kitsap School Board will hold a study session from 5:15-6 p.m. The public hearing begins immediately after, from 6-7 p.m. The meeting will be held at the district office, 18360 Caldart Ave, Poulsbo.
The school board’s decision deadline to close a school is just over a week away. The five-member board is expected to announce which school it will close Feb. 28, during the regular school board meeting.
Breidablik and Gordon elementary schools are the other two schools on the closure list.
The closure will take effect for the 2013-14 school year.
Annual inter-tribal council/ school board meeting is Feb. 21
The school board and Suquamish and S’Klallam tribes will hold their annual inter-tribal council/ school board meeting Feb. 21.
The meeting begins at 5:30 p.m. in the House of Awakened Culture, 7235 NE Parkway, Suquamish. The meeting will recess for approximately 30 minutes after opening remarks and before formal presentations are made.
Included in the agenda after dinner will be presentations on public law and education program reports.
There will be time for public comment following the presentations.
POULSBO — The community heard the “key factors” that will help the North Kitsap School Board determine which elementary school to close this year.
Board President Dan Weedin had the five-member board list the factors that would guide the closure decision during the first of three public hearings Feb. 7. The main focus of the meeting was Gordon Elementary, one of three schools on the list of potential closures.
School capacity, transportation, and overall cost and savings were the top items for Weedin. How much a school costs versus how much closing a school saves was one of the top factors for the board.
The board is expected to make its decision at its Feb. 28 regular meeting.
Two more public hearings are scheduled: Feb. 14, to consider the merits of closing Breidablik Elementary; and Feb. 21, to consider the pros and cons of closing Wolfle Elementary. The meetings begin with a board study session from 5:15-6 p.m., followed by a public hearing from 6-7 p.m.
Before the meeting started, most if not all the seats had been filled. The comment list was long for those in support of keeping Gordon open. Though each person received only three minutes to speak — the normal allotted time for comment at a board meeting — more than 10 people didn’t get a chance to speak publicly.
Gordon third-grade teacher Bethany LaHaie said the message from the staff at Gordon is: support. Community outcry about a school’s possible closure, she said, indicates all schools are doing a good job.
However, while programs and staff members can be moved if Gordon is closed, there are some school features that can’t be moved. Physical education instructor Tony Bainbridge talked about the school’s learning pods with moveable walls, and a multipurpose room that’s separate from the gymnasium. Fifth-grade teacher Terry Cowen talked about the money raised by the PTA for a sidewalk from the school to Barber Cut Off Road ($11,000), and a reader board ($4,800). Another speaker talked about more than $30,000 of community investment in the Gordon gardens.
School location came up more than once: Gordon is located within walking distance of Kingston Middle and Kingston High schools. Bobbie Moore, chairwoman of the Village Green Metropolitan Park District, said having a “three-school campus” is not an accident — it’s the result of 20 years of planning.
The school board decided to close a school after several years of enrollment declines and budget reductions. The district’s budget was cut by about $2.4 million by 2012-13. Staffing was reduced by 14.7 full-time equivalent positions — from 369.95 to 355.25 FTEs.
Closing a school is estimated to save the district between $300,000 to $500,000 per year, but actual savings are expected to be on the lower side.
A School Closure Committee met nine times between Aug. 28 and Jan. 14, and voted on three schools for closure consideration. Breidablik received the most votes (74), followed by Gordon (71). Though Wolfle had fewer votes (42) than Vinland (48), Vinland was removed from the list, as was Suquamish (32).
In an unofficial poll on North Kitsap Vikaneer, 82 people voted on which of the three schools should close. Breidablik received 59 votes, Wolfle 13, and Gordon 10.
Vote on the poll at the bottom of this post.
The North Kitsap School Board will take a look at the first of three schools on the school closure list Feb. 7 during a study session.
The meeting, open to the public, will allow the board to discuss Gordon Elementary as an option for closure. The meeting begins at 5:15 p.m. in the board room in the district office, 18360 Caldart Ave. NE, Poulsbo.
Gordon received the second-highest number of votes (71) for closure during the School Closure Committee’s final meeting.
The other schools on the list are Breidablik (74 votes) and Wolfle (42 votes).
In the first 45 minutes of the meeting, the board will discuss the possibility of closing Gordon. Then, from 6-7 p.m., the board will hold a public hearing, where anyone may address the board.
No action will be taken during this meeting, according to the district’s website.
A study session on closing Breidablik will be Feb. 14. The last session, to discuss closing Wolfle, will be Feb. 20.
The board is expected to make its closure decision during its Feb. 28 meeting.
As a reminder, Poulsbo Elementary was taken off the list of closure options earlier in the school year. Although Pearson and Vinland received more votes for closure, there are ramifications to closing either school, including:
— Pearson borders Central Kitsap School District, which means there is a greater chance the district will lose more students if it closes Pearson as parents opt out of attending NKSD. The district already has decreasing enrollment, which is causing budget cuts.
— Vinland is next to the largest area of Poulsbo currently being residentially developed. Liberty Hill is expecting 71 homes on 16 acres. The development is on Urdahl Road, less than one mile from Vinland. Poulsbo Elementary, too, has a large number of new homes being developed nearby. Poulsbo Elementary could not absorb on its own the projected amount of students (145.35) that could live in these homes.
Of course, the above are just examples.
There may be more reasons not to close a school. This is why the board is allowing residents to show up and have their voices heard. Maybe someone out there in the community has an idea that could completely reverse the board’s thinking on school closure.
Judging by the community forums Superintendent Patty Page has held throughout the school year, and the number of people attending school board meetings recently, these public hearings will be packed.
Missed the first school closure forum? You’re in luck, there is another tonight.
North Kitsap School District Superintendent Patty Page will host the forum in the North Kitsap High School Commons at 6:30 p.m.
The forum will provide guests with updates on the school closure committee’s work and to answer questions.
Page said the school closure committee is currently working on narrowing down the closure options it pursues. The committee is expected to narrow those options by the third forum.
The last two forums are Dec. 12 at the Kingston Middle School Commons and Jan. 16 at the Poulsbo Middle School Gymnasium. Both forums begin at 6:30 p.m.