Chautauqua Elementary School

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

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  • Welcome to the 2017-18 school year. I hope you and your families are enjoying your summer activities and time together. The first day of school is Tuesday, September 5th for grades 1-5. For Kindergarten students, their first day of classes will be Thursday, September 7th. Kindergarten families will begin the year with parent conferences on September 5th and 6th. Scheduling information for conferences will be sent separately. Your child will bring home a packet of information that will provide more information about our school and partners, and the school handbook can be found on our website. Please read through this packet thoroughly as it will help you navigate through the year.

    What’s new this year?

    • We will add a fourth intern to our Spanish culture and language program (grades K-3), and Ms. Clayton will be teaching Spanish in all grade levels. If you’d like to host or support an intern, please let us know.
    • This year we are excited to add spring conferences March 22nd and 23rd. We will be able to share your child’s progress during the year and build our home to school connections.
    • We will be piloting new reading curriculum and continuing to expand our science program.
    • We will begin our day with breakfast and/or exercise and assembly time, so buses will arrive ten minutes earlier than last year. This will enable our classes to start with the whole class ready to go at 9:15. (The first bell will still be at 9:05 for parent drop off.)
    • We will have an expanded kindergarten playground and baffling for the gym sound system.
    • We will add a part time mental health counselor through a partnership with Neighborcare.

    This year we are welcoming several new staff members to Chautauqua:

    • Mr. Lanphear is joining our kindergarten team, coming from the Tacoma School District with twins of his own entering kindergarten.
    • Ms. Fox is teaching second grade, in a job share with Ms. Macray, joining us from Seattle.
    • Ms. Jensen joins us in fourth grade, excited to move here from Oregon.
    • Ms. Lindsay joins our third grade team, after being a principal intern last year she is excited to be returning to the classroom.
    • Ms. Parrish, Ms. Hanneman and Mr. Goulding will complete our Special Education teacher team.
    • Ms. Smith joins us in music.
    • Ms. Miller is our new counselor.

    These educators are a wonderful addition to an already awesome staff.

    Your child’s teachers, our support staff and I are looking forward to a great year of learning at Chautauqua. If you have any questions, concerns or just wish to chat please contact me to set up a visit.


    Rebecca Goertzel, Principal

    Julie Kangas, Assistant Principal

Who We Are


    We engage - We learn - We lead

    At Chautauqua Elementary we learn together, enjoying the challenge of deepening our learning. We engage with our children, each other, and our parents. Through compassion and care we strive to solve problems with respectful engagement and concern for all. We are committed to each person thriving in our school. We collaborate to lead our own learning and that of our peers. Together we are discovering our ways toward improvement as we develop the whole child within our school community.

    We believe in developing children’s strengths and developing skills they have not yet mastered. Also, we guide children to strengthen and develop positive learning behaviors and social skills. Our staff is committed to helping children achieve their full potential at every grade level beginning with our preschool (3 and 4 year olds) through fifth grade. We understand that all children develop at varied paces, and we utilize a variety of strategies to support their different learning styles and interests.

    As an elementary school, we recognize children’s natural curiosity and interest in learning about their world. Our focus is on providing engaging instruction that develops their natural ability to ask questions and to probe for deeper answers. While uncovering and celebrating students’ strengths as learners we strive to use those strengths to support the more challenging aspects of each child’s learning.

    Children learn to integrate into a larger school community through our focus on community norms. They quickly learn that respect is at the center of our interactions. We teach SOLE (respect for Self, Others, Learning and our Environment) to all children and celebrate their kind and respectful choices. We develop children’s resiliency while building upon their natural empathy for others. It is our mission to create a community of learners who engage, contribute, and thrive at Chautauqua Elementary School and beyond.

The Chautauqua Day

  • CES Office Hours:


    2017-18 School Day, Grades K-5

    Start time: 9:05am
    Late bell: 9:15am
    Dismissal: 3:35pm
    Buses Depart: 3:45pm 

    Children enter our building each morning at 9:05 a.m. and dismiss at 3:35 p.m. They have a schedule that is unique to their classroom and/or grade level where they study academics, develop their learning behaviors, and receive social skills instruction. Children develop empathy and learn self-management skills in the areas of impulsivity and emotional regulation through our Second Step instruction. Most days children go to a specialist class which provides instruction in art, music and physical fitness/health. Identified students receive support in reading, math and other skills.


    2017-2018 Preschool Programs

    ECEAP: Monday-Thursday from 9:05am to 3:35pm

    CES Pre-K:

    AM Class, Monday-Wednesday from 9:05am to 11:55am

    PM Class, Monday-Thursday from 12:55pm to 3:35pm


    Who’s Who in the Office

    Ms. Rebecca Goertzel, Principal
    Ms. Julie Kangas, Assistant Principal
    Ms. Gillian Callison, Office Manager/Registrar
    Ms. Terri Vickers, Secretary
    Ms. Kristina Miller, Counselor


  • Reading/Writing: Our K – 3rd grade teachers work with our reading support staff and LRC support staff to provide a Walk-to-Read model where readers are learning skills with children who need to learn the same skills. The children are regularly progress monitored to determine their fit for the group they are assigned. Staff members make responsive changes based on students’ challenges and growth. When academic gains or needs are determined, children move to other groups where their current skills are being taught. Walk-to-Read specifically helps to instill a love of reading. This instructional support extends into all forms of communication and comprehension including speaking and writing clearly. Also, a solid home support that dovetails with our reading curriculum and interventions is offered for struggling readers.

    Our main reading instructional resources are Reading A to Z, RAZ Kids, with Comprehension Toolkit for our older students. Units of Study by Lucy Calkins is our instructional resource for writing. This resource provides a step-wise progression of skills through the grades beginning in kindergarten. Our reading and writing resources are augmented with a variety of supplemental materials to provide the instruction that is needed for each type of learner.

    Math: We began implementing a new math curriculum in the fall of 2014. In the Bridges curriculum students gain a strong understanding of number relationships and patterns prior to learning standard algorithms. A major component of our math instruction includes student discourse where evidence for problem solving is shared and discussed. Students learn content within a module and unit framework during their main lesson. They review previous concepts each day during a short calendar embedded lesson called, Number Corner.

    Science: Our district hired island scientist and instructor Trish Howard a few years ago to write a Life Sciences curriculum for our school campus. Children learn through hands-on investigations in our surrounding forest, nearby pond, school garden, and on the general campus while birding. Also, our Partners in Education (PIE) granters provide funds for a myriad of science-based field trips away from our campus. Each grade level studies a different topic in physical science as well.

    Our fifth graders attend an environmental camp in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains every year. At Waskowitz Outdoor School they learn about the environmental connections between plants, animals, soil, and water, with a field study session at a nearby watershed. Habitats and ecosystems are an integral part of this experience, along with making choices that preserve and protect the environment. A social benefit of meeting new friends from other NW Washington schools and nurturing independence and self-reliance are a bonus in rounding out this environmental experience.

    Social Studies: Each instructional level team has developed project-based learning opportunities for cultural studies. Also, teachers utilize these studies to further develop students’ comprehension skills and writing. Multiage classes align closely with the project studies in first, second and third grades. Kindergartners send out Flat Stanley letters to connect family and friends to their concept of the world. First grade China; Second grade Native Americans; Third grade Continents and Oceans; Fourth grade Washington State; Fifth grade Early United States.

    Technology: Classroom teachers either take their students to our computer lab or use our mobile Chrome Book sets to teach keyboarding skills and research skills. This is emphasized in grades 3 – 5 with some introduction to keyboarding in 2nd grade. Our younger students use Chromebooks, laptops, iPads to practice penmanship and reading skills primarily. Some math extension and support activities are also available through our technology devices.

    Art: Students attend art class weekly. They learn about the elements of art, genres, and study particular artists’ styles. Our art teacher uses a variety of techniques to teach drawing, painting, sculpting and paper art. Thanks to the Artists in Schools grant opportunity some grade levels work with island artists to learn skills through a well-developed project taught by the guest artist and supported by our art teacher.

    Music: Students attend music class weekly. Teaching methods include visual, kinesthetic and aural modalities. Children learn to recognize and use a variety of musical elements such as rhythm, melody, harmony, form and timbre. They play instruments (drums, rhythm, barred instruments, keyboard), dance and sing as they explore a range of musical genre.

    Physical Education & Health: Students receive at least two PE/Health classes each week. The focus of these classes is to help our students develop skills and interests in healthy activity and to understand how their body works in order to take care of it.


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