Vashon Island School District

To equip every student to engage, thrive, and contribute within an ever-changing world.

FYI From the Superintendent

  • Gratitude! - Vashon Supports Bond 72% "Yes"

    Posted by Jodi Burwell at 4/26/2017 3:00:00 PM

    Dear Parents, Community and Colleagues,

    We are elated by our community's support of our $9.9 million bond proposal passing last night with a "Yes" vote of just under 72%.  This support far exceeds the 60% super majority requirement for such propositions, and is clear evidence of our community's commitment to our schools and our youth.

     This bond will accomplish the following projects:

    1. Repair, replace, and improve portions of Chautauqua Elementary School (furniture and paint), McMurray Middle School (carpet, windows and locker room renovation), and Student/FamilyLink facilities (upgrade of HVAC and other systems). 
    2. Replace the 50-year old Vashon Island High School cinder track and the playing field within it with a synthetic track and field.
    3. Construct a new maintenance shop and repurpose the district’s oldest buildings for storage.

    Over the next few weeks we will determine a priority order and schedule for project completion.  We deeply appreciate your support.

    Best regards,

      Michael Soltman                         

    Michael Soltman
    Superintendent of Schools
    msoltman@vashonsd.org
    206-463-8535

    Comments (-1)
  • Ballots due today. Please vote.

    Posted by Jodi Burwell at 4/25/2017 10:00:00 AM

    Dear Families and Colleagues,

    Today is the last day to vote!  Ballots are due to be postmarked by 8 PM, or to be dropped in the ballot box at the Vashon Library by 8 PM.

    Thank you for voting.

    Best regards,

                                

    Michael Soltman
    Superintendent of Schools
    msoltman@vashonsd.org
    206-463-8535

    Comments (-1)
  • Good Day at School...

    Posted by Jodi Burwell at 4/20/2017 4:00:00 PM

    Dear Parents and Colleagues, 

    I’m writing to reassure you that we had a positive and uneventful day at school today.  Regarding the threats we investigated yesterday, there is also good news.  That is, our students and parents swiftly reported the rumors and we were able to investigate quickly to determine they were groundless.  Thank you, and your children, for the open and timely communication of any concerns; let’s continue to reinforce the “see/hear something, say something” message to maximize safety in our schools and community.

    These rumors raised a great deal of fear and anxiety.  In faculty meetings held at all three schools today, our faculty and staff shared in your apprehension and concern, despite there being no real threat.  To each of us, such a situation would be our worst nightmare.  We take seriously our role to provide comfort to our students, to take appropriate precautions, and to be ever vigilant.

    Vashon Island is a unique community to live in, largely due to its remote, isolated and rural nature.  We are fortunate that most of our King County deputies are also residents of the island and are extremely responsive and invested in our safety.  Two deputies helped welcome our VHS students on campus this morning and were nearby and on call to all schools throughout the day.  We elected to not have deputies stationed in our buildings as that action was likely to raise anxiety for no real reason.

    Our absentee rate was slightly higher today than normal on a late start day.  For today, absences will be excused.  I hope to see all of our students in school tomorrow.  I choose to live on Vashon due to the safety I feel, as well as the sense of community and care.  While this incident has raised anxiety and concern, given other options, I choose Vashon every day.  We must all work together to communicate and act to keep our schools safe.  As always, I welcome your thoughts, comments, and concerns.

    Best regards,

       Michael Soltman                       

    Michael Soltman
    Superintendent of Schools
    msoltman@vashonsd.org
    206-463-8535

    Comments (-1)
  • Unsubstantiated Threats at VHS

    Posted by Jodi Burwell at 4/19/2017 6:30:00 PM

    Dear Parents and Colleagues, 

    Over the past three hours VHS principal, Danny Rock, and I have been fielding a number of phone calls and anonymous alerts regarding rumors of a possible shooting at the high school tomorrow.

    Our investigation, including many interviews with parents and students, reveals that there is no credible threat and that none of the students reported have a plan or any intention of causing harm.

    We have also been consulting with law enforcement.  Law enforcement will be present in the morning as students arrive and we will be coordinating with them through the evening on how to continue to address and investigate these rumors.

    Your assistance and vigilance is requested.  Please contact us immediately with any information through our anonymous alerts system.  Please leave your contact information in the message so that we can follow up with you, if necessary.

    Again, I restate, that we have found no truth or credibility to these rumors, however, we investigate each report thoroughly and involve parents and families immediately in our investigation.  Please reassure your students that we are taking all available actions to ensure the safety of our schools.

    Best regards,

                               

    Michael Soltman
    Superintendent of School
    msoltman@vashonsd.org
    206-463-8535

    Comments (-1)
  • Mail Bond Ballots by April 25th – Free Postage!

    Posted by Jodi Burwell at 4/19/2017 9:30:00 AM

    Dear Families and Colleagues,

    Ballots are due in the mail by next Tuesday, April 25 th , and the County is picking up the cost of the postage!  Please vote today.

    1. Repair, replace, and improve portions of Chautauqua Elementary School, McMurray Middle School,   and Student/FamilyLink facilities. 
    2. Replace the 50-year old Vashon Island High School cinder track and the playing field within it.
    3. Construct a new maintenance shop and repurpose the district’s oldest buildings for storage.

    In response to the defeat of last year’s bond proposal, the school board drastically scaled back this proposal to include only the highest priority projects totaling $9.9 million. Annual taxes on a $500,000 home would increase no more than $5 per month.                      

    As taxpaying citizens of Vashon Island, you have an ongoing investment in our schools. Our schools are your schools. I invite you to review the information on our website, and in the issue of Soundings mailed to you earlier this month.  If you have any questions, please call me at 206-463-8535, or email msoltman@vashonsd.org.

    Thank you for taking the time to learn about this proposal.

    Best regards,

     Michael Soltman                            

    Michael Soltman
    Superintendent of Schools
    msoltman@vashonsd.org
    206-463-8535

    Comments (-1)
  • Riptide Broadcast Team will Stream Rep. Jayapal Event Thursday

    Posted by Jodi Burwell at 4/11/2017 12:00:00 PM

    Vashon High School's student-run newspaper and broadcast program, the Riptide, has a terrific group of students. The paper is advised by English teacher Stephen Denlinger and overseen by Senior editors Madison McCann and Anne Khel.

    Now in it's second year, the Riptide broadcast department, led by Sophmores Maya Gould and Solrun Heuschert, will be live-streaming the Town Hall Event held by U.S. Representative Pramila Jayapal, starting at 6:30 p.m. this Thursday, April 13, at Vashon High School's Theatre. You can tune in to the discussion as it happens by going to http://tv.vashonsd.org.

    Previously the broadcast team has produced live-streaming Fall, Winter and Spring sports, musical events, and most recently Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson's talk to our student body. The team was able to stream the Attorney General's visit to the Vashon Island School District live on the internet. They have archived it for future viewing at http://tv.vashonsd.org.

    Though this event is not sponsored by the school district and Representative Jayapal's office is renting our theater, the broadcast team is eager to cover this important Town Hall meeting on Vashon.  And, as a bonus every person on our island community can "attend" the town hall meeting to hear the congresswoman talk.

    I'm proud that our students continue to participate in meaningful projects that serve our community.

    Best regards,

    Michael Soltman                           

    Michael Soltman
    Superintendent of Schools
    msoltman@vashonsd.org
    206-463-8535

    Comments (-1)
  • Live Streaming of Attorney General Visit

    Posted by Jodi Burwell at 4/5/2017 12:00:00 PM

    Dear Parents and Colleagues,

    We are pleased to announce that Attorney General Bob Ferguson’s forum at Vashon High School will be streamed live at http://tv.vashonsd.org tomorrow, Thursday, April 6, beginning at 9am.

    Students from the Riptide Broadcast crew will film and direct the broadcast with support from Jacob Danielsen and the VISD Tech Department. This coverage is possible because of exceptional leadership shown by the following students: Kiki Andersen, Brennan Barrett, Maya Gould, Jesse Harrold, Solrun Heuschert, Tayo Jamison, Alex Lee, Omar Peck. Their adviser Mr. Denlinger shares, "What's most exciting to me about all of this is that it is student-led.”

    In addition to live streaming community events, the Riptide Broadcast program produces Fall, Winter and Spring sports broadcasts, a radio show "Fresh Delivery" which airs monthly on the Voice of Vashon, and a new broadcast news show called “Fresh Look” that chronicles this exciting moment in the VHS Journalism program.

    Mr. Ferguson was invited to speak to select Social Studies classes at VHS; 25 seats were made available to the public on a first come basis. He will talk about the role of the Attorney General as well as information about his recent lawsuit challenging President Trump's executive order on the "travel ban."

    All seats for this event have been filled so we hope you will join us during the live streaming tomorrow at 9am right here: http://tv.vashonsd.org.

     Attorney Bob Ferguson


    Attorney General, Bob Ferguson


    Best regards,

        Michael Soltman                          

    Michael Soltman
    Superintendent of Schools
    msoltman@vashonsd.org
    206-463-8535

    Comments (-1)
  • Attorney General Bob Ferguson to Speak at VHS

    Posted by Jodi Burwell at 4/3/2017 12:00:00 PM

    Dear Parents and Colleagues,

    We are delighted that Attorney General Bob Ferguson has accepted our invitation to speak to our students at VHS this coming Thursday, 9:00 a.m., in the VHS theater.  Mr. Ferguson will be presenting information regarding the role of the Attorney General as well as information about his recent successful lawsuit challenging President Trump's executive order on the "travel ban."

    The original order, Executive Order 13769, barred all visitors from seven countries — Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen — for 90 days. U.S. District Court Senior Judge James L. Robart issued an injunction halting the order after Ferguson filed his lawsuit on Jan. 30 challenging key provisions as illegal and unconstitutional.

    VHS students in selected social studies courses will attend the presentation.  We have also reserved 25 seats for interested parents/community members that would like to attend.  If you would like to reserve a seat, please email, VHS office manager, Susan Bakker, sbakker@vashonsd.org.

    attorneygeneralbobferguso
    Attorney General, Bob Ferguson


    Best regards,

       Michael Soltman                        

    Michael Soltman
    Superintendent of Schools
    msoltman@vashonsd.org
    206-463-8535

    Comments (-1)
  • VISD Bond Proposal Vote By April 25

    Posted by Jodi Burwell at 3/30/2017 12:00:00 PM

    Dear Families and Colleagues,

    Between April 7 and April 25th our community will have the opportunity to vote by mail-in ballot on a bond proposal that will accomplish the following projects: 

    1. Repair, replace, and improve portions of Chautauqua Elementary School, McMurray Middle School, and Student/FamilyLink facilities. 
    2. Replace the 50-year old Vashon Island High School cinder track and the playing field within it.
    3. Construct a new maintenance shop and repurpose the district’s oldest buildings for storage.

    In response to the defeat of last year’s bond proposal, the school board drastically scaled back this proposal to include only the highest priority projects totaling $9.9 million. Annual taxes on a $500,000 home would increase no more than $5 per month.

    Bond 2017 detailed map

    As taxpaying citizens of Vashon Island, you have an ongoing investment in our schools. Our schools are your schools. I invite you to review the information on our website, and in the issue of Soundings mailed to you yesterday.  If you have any questions, please call me at 206-463-8535, or email msoltman@vashonsd.org.

    Thank you for taking the time to learn about this proposal.

    Best regards,

      Michael Signature                         

    Michael Soltman
    Superintendent of Schools
    msoltman@vashonsd.org
    206-463-8535

    Comments (-1)
  • VISD Spring Music Concerts

    Posted by Jodi Burwell at 3/20/2017 1:00:00 PM

    Dear Parents, Colleagues and Community,

    VISD is blessed with a great tradition of quality music and arts programs within our schools, and we have an exceptional two weeks of music headed our way!  Don't miss any of this....

    VHS Spring Concert
    Tuesday, March 21st, 7:00 p.m., VHS Theater
    Our spring concert featuring the VHS Wind Ensemble directed by Dan Baker, and the Jazz and Percussion Ensembles directed by Todd Zimberg.  Admission is free.

    Mick Maloney and Athena Tergis
    Saturday, March 25th, at 7:00 p.m.
    A one-of-a-kind evening to celebrate Irish culture.  Renowned Irish Musician and Folklorist, Mick Maloney will be joined by Celtic fiddler, Athena Tergis.  A must see for our aspiring musicians.  Tickets can be purchase as Brown Paper Tickets, Vashon Bookshop, or in the VISD district offices.  Tickets are $20 in advance and $24 at the door.  Proceeds to benefit the VISD music program.

    McMurray Spring Concert
    Wednesday, March 29th, 7:00 p.m., McMurray Middle School
    Our spring concert featuring the McMurray Symphonic Band, Mustang Band, and McMurray Jazz Band, directed by Dan Baker.  Also featuring the Vashon Youth String Orchestra, directed by Gay Detzler.  Admission is free.

    Vashon Eagles Donates $12,300 to VISD Music Programs
    I also want to acknowledge the amazing support of our music programs we receive from Vashon Eagles.  The Eagles are committed to seeing that any student who wishes to participate in music programs can do so through providing financial assistance to students in need.  This donation supports students in need of support to rent or repair instruments, and assists the school district to purchase more expensive instruments for student use such as tubas and oboes.  If your student needs such support, please contact Jodi Burwell with the district office at (206) 463-8533 or by email jburwell@vashonsd.org.  Eagles makes it possible for all students to access our music programs!

    Music is at the heart of our schools and our community.  Come out and celebrate with us.

    See you at the shows,
      Michael Signature                  

    Michael Soltman
    Superintendent of Schools
    msoltman@vashonsd.org
    206-463-8535

    Comments (-1)
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