Dec. 26, 2018 pertussis (whooping cough) notification

This letter was sent to all Kessler families.

12/26/18

Dear Kessler Families:

We want you to be aware that we have a student with a confirmed case of pertussis (whooping cough). Your child may have been exposed through contact with this student at school.

Pertussis is a highly contagious disease that is spread through the air by coughing. Pertussis usually begins with cold-like symptoms and a cough that worsens over 1-2 weeks. Symptoms may include coughing “fits” followed by a “whooping” noise, vomiting, cyanosis (turning blue) or the inability to catch one’s breath. The cough is often worse at night and cough medicines usually do not help eliminate the cough. Usually, persons infected with pertussis do not have a fever. In older children and adults, the symptoms may be only a persistent cough which is worse at night. This illness is often very severe in small infants.

We recommend the following for children and staff that may have been exposed to pertussis:

  • Please monitor your child for the next 3 weeks for cold-like symptoms. Symptoms of pertussis usually appear within 7-10 days of exposure, but can be as long as 3 weeks before symptoms begin. If your child develops cough, fever or other signs of respiratory illness s/he should be evaluated promptly by your doctor for pertussis infection.
  • If you have a child under the age of 1 year who was potentially exposed, please speak with your doctor about getting antibiotics for your child even if your child does not have any symptoms. This is done to prevent an exposed infant from developing the illness. These antibiotics must be taken as soon as possible after exposure.
  • If you are pregnant, especially if in your third trimester, and were potentially exposed, please speak with your doctor about getting antibiotics for yourself to prevent the development of illness even if you do not have any of the above symptoms. These antibiotics must be taken as soon as possible after exposure.
  • If you see your doctor for any of the reasons listed above, please show them this letter at your visit.
  • Although adults and children may contract pertussis, even if they have had all or some of their immunizations (DTaP and Tdap), vaccination against pertussis is still one of the best ways of reducing the risk of getting this disease and reducing the severity of disease. Pertussis vaccines are recommended for both children and adults. Adults and adolescents should have a Tdap booster shot. Cowlitz County Health Department encourages parents to take this opportunity to ensure their families are up-to-date with vaccinations that protect against pertussis and other preventable diseases, regardless of a potential exposure.

Sincerely,

Noma Hudson, Principal
Kessler Elementary

2019-01-03T14:15:16-07:00January 3rd, 2019|

Winter break early release and January back-to-school

Longview students will be released early on Friday, December 21, 2018 to begin their winter vacation.  Release times are:

  • Elementary schools – two hours earlier than regular release time
  • Cascade – 11:45am release
  • Monticello – 11:50am release
  • Mt. Solo – 11:55am release
  • High schools – 11:50am release

Students return back to school on Wednesday, January 2, 2019. Students will be released one hour early on that day.

Broadway Learning Center has no school on Friday, Dec. 21. School resumes for Broadway students on Thursday, January 3, 2019.

 

2019-01-02T17:27:15-07:00December 20th, 2018|

November Employees of the Month

CERTIFICATED EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH

Barbara Moore

Barbara Moore joined the district in 2011 and has since been known for her kindheartedness. She shows kindness to all students and is willing to help if they are in need. Not only is she positive and kind toward our students, but she is also uplifting to the staff with her positive attitude and words of kindness. She inspires others to do their best. Despite occasional challenges, she doesn’t complain. She remains positive and shares her calm and kind disposition with everyone she encounters.

CLASSIFIED EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH

Victoria Giles

A long-time Longview Public Schools team member, Vickie Giles, displays an upbeat personality that has contributed to providing a motivating and uplifting atmosphere in the transportation department. She has been a foundation of strength and guidance for struggling members and encouraged them with knowledge, words of encouragement and a warm, friendly smile. She is always available for department/district needs, even putting her own plans aside on evenings and weekends should the need arise. Vickie received a call from a team looking for a bus on a Saturday that they didn’t have ordered but she dropped everything on her day off to get a bus to the team and find a driver to take them as well, even volunteering to drive them herself to ensure the team would be able to attend their event at Districts.

She is selfless when it comes to the needs of the department and is an incredible asset to our district.

2018-12-17T15:38:53-07:00December 17th, 2018|

October Employees of the Month

John Hancock has been a valued Kessler team member since he joined Longview Public Schools in 2016. It’s noted that he has embraced Conscious Discipline and developed his ability to be patient, kind, and maintain a positive attitude. He has gone out of his way to stop and help students outside of his grade level; sharing his calm and positive attitude with them when needed most.

Cindy Street has been a long-time Longview Public Schools team member, lending her expertise to the transportation department since 1984. She does an amazing job getting Pervasive students rides on short notice to and from school at times that are out of the norm. Cindy can be contacted any time of day and will be able to find a bus to support our students quickly with a can-do attitude, even when it’s going to be tough. She will be sorely missed when she retires in 2019.

 

 

2018-11-15T11:16:04-07:00November 15th, 2018|

Longview teachers have class

We’re proud of our educators and are taking this opportunity to introduce you to two of them, in their own words. They have different interests but share a passion for preparing Longview students for successful futures!

This is a supplement to the Longview Public Schools annual report. Both Gail Wells and Sam Kell are featured in the printed version of the annual report.  

Gail Wells, math teacher, Monticello Middle School.

Gail Wells believes everyone can do math. She works the room and uses technology to gauge how much each student understands, even those who never raise their hands.

Where did you grow up and go to school? I was born in North Dakota and grew up in Federal Way, Washington. I was in the first graduating class at Thomas Jefferson High School in Auburn and went to Western Washington University for a degree in home economics.

How did you get from home economics to math? My passion was food and nutrition, but math is completely entrenched in home economics—measuring food, finance, sewing …

Why do people think math is so hard? Society doesn’t allow people not to be “readers,” but for some reason it’s OK to not be good at math. The mindset should be that “I can do it,” because everyone can.

How long have you been teaching? Twenty-six or 27 years—10 years at St. Helens and 10 years at Robert Gray, with four years as a math coach at Kessler and Robert Gray. Now I’m finishing at Monticello Middle School.

How has teaching math changed? When I was in school, it was, “Here is how you do it. Now copy what I do.” We don’t do that anymore. Instead of just handing students an algorithm or a way to do something, we do a lot of concrete building of understanding before moving to the abstract.

What is the best thing about being a teacher? That look on a student’s face when they “get it”—it’s priceless.

What are some of the keys to being a good teacher? Number one is understanding what the goal is. For me it’s the state standards—I have to know what the students need to know. Also …

  • Making sure the students get the needed feedback so they can self-evaluate.
  • Being ready when they walk through the door—knowing where you’re going and how to get there, not just turning the page on the book and teaching them what’s on the next page.
  • Adjusting if the students are not getting it.

The big thing here at Monticello is I have an amazing teaching partner, Phil Hartley. We collaborate, do assessments, reflect on student work, talk about the goals and are transparent about our work. Today we are going to share kids and do some interventions, so we can get them where they need to be right now.

To be a good teacher, it’s everything, including a great administration that supports you. It’s not just one thing.

What advice do you have for new teachers? Don’t think you already know everything. I’ve been teaching for 26 or 27 years, and every year I learn something new. Every year I get better. So listen to your colleagues, listen to your students, and be willing to adapt. Be a part of the team.

What’s something people might not know about you? I’ve been making gingerbread houses for 30 years. I have two sons who were in the armed service—one still is. I send gingerbread houses to Afghanistan and Bosnia. My daughter taught English in South Korea, so I sent one to her.

What would you tell the community about what life is like in school? When those kids come up the stairs and say hi to me, it’s wonderful. It’s the best place in the world to work.

What are students like today? Students are considerate of each other. They want to do their best—they want to succeed.

Anything else? This is my last year of teaching. I want to have more time with my family and visit my grandchildren—I have six. My career as a teacher has been an amazing journey. I feel deeply blessed by every student I’ve ever had.

 

 

Sam Kell, industrial arts teacher, Mark Morris High School

Sam Kell practices what he teaches. At school, he introduces pre-apprenticeship students (pg. 3) to technical skills like carpentry. In his spare time, he works on his own fixer-upper house.

Where did you grow up and go to school? I spent my childhood in Kelso and Longview, and went to Catlin Elementary, Columbia Heights Elementary, Cascade Middle School and Mark Morris High School. I spent one year at Lower Columbia College and finished my final three years at Central Washington University in the industrial arts program.

Why did you get into teaching? I always liked working with people and going through the learning process. My mom is a pre-school teacher.

Who introduced you to industrial arts? My dad is a self-employed residential contractor. He flips houses and owns rentals. I started working with my dad when I was 10 or 11 years old. I was just a helping hand with sheetrock and roofs. In school I excelled in shop classes and was happiest in project-based learning.

What’s the best part about being a teacher? Building relationships with the students. Teaching is all about the relationships and the growth.

What are the students of today like? They are hard-working and task driven. People may assume students never get off their smartphone or think, “It’s not like when we were in school.” But I still see the drive in students to get things done. Sometimes it takes different teaching styles to motivate different students.

What is one thing you want to teach every student? One thing I’d like to teach every student is lifelong learning and self-evaluation. To be able to reflect on the job you just completed is a very important skill no matter what you do. I learned a long time ago, “reflect and do better.”

What would you like people to know about school? School is about learning, and failure is okay.

 Do you have hobbies? I love hunting, fishing and hiking, and I share season tickets to the Trailblazers. I’ve been a Blazers fan since elementary school. I watched Michael Jordan and Clyde Drexler play. I also own a house in Kelso—it’s a fixer upper.

 Anything else? It’s important for young people in our community to recognize their own skills and recognize what Longview has to offer. Longview is a great place.

2018-11-07T15:28:49-07:00November 6th, 2018|

September Employees of the Month

Julie Schneider (on the left) has been a Longview Schools team member for over 20 years, and a good portion of that time has been spent at Broadway Early Learning Center. She is on the PTO committee, Site Based Committee, the Trelis Team, and has many other “hats” she wears at the campus. Julie has so much history and knowledge when it comes to connecting with Broadway families. She truly understands how impactful early intervention can be for our students. Her nominator referred to her as a “gem” and feels very lucky to have her on the team.

Theresa Bru (on the right)  has been a para educator since 2011 when she started at Cascade Middle School, eventually moving to Kessler. Theresa is quick to spot and address student needs and always does so with a smile. She has made it a smooth transition for many students who have moved back to Kessler with the opening of a new Extensive Support Program. Her nominator noted that, “Theresa is amazing!”

2018-11-06T15:37:11-07:00November 6th, 2018|
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