Meet our Principals
It’s more than just a gut feeling
Educators get new “panorama” view of students
“Now more than ever, in our remote learning setting, we want to find out how students are doing so we can support them,” said Chad Honig, Executive Director of Secondary Schools.
Assessing a student’s academic success is one thing. But assessing their social-emotional wellbeing, especially in the current remote learning environment, requires more than just a “gut feeling” by educators.
Difficult isn’t a dealbreaker
Math teacher talks social emotional learning … and wrestling
Sorys Enerolisa Cepeda-Carvalho teaches 7th and 8th grade math at Spanaway Middle School. She’s also the head wrestling coach. To say her job has changed drastically this year is an understatement, but her commitment to students hasn’t wavered, especially when it comes to their social-emotional needs.
“Even though I provide the opportunity for social interaction, it’s still different,” she said. “I’m very personal, outgoing, friendly — doing that online is difficult.”
But difficult isn’t a dealbreaker, and Cepeda-Carvalho works hard to make connections where she can. “I watch anime, they watch anime. I have pets, they have pets,” she said.
One classroom, two teachers
Co-teaching fosters inclusion and equity at middle school
Principal Julie Shultz-Bartlett was looking for new ways to better serve her students with special needs. “The status quo had to change, because we were not closing achievement gaps for kids,” she said.
In 2016, the special education classes at Bethel Middle School were completely separated from the general education classes. So a special education student who was on the football team wouldn’t see their teammates all day, even though they went to the same school.
“It was very isolating for them,” said Shultz-Bartlett.
So she wondered, what if two teachers, with complimentary skills, could team up to share a classroom and students? With double the teaching power, the ratio of special education students in the class could be higher than normal, as both teachers would share the responsibility of planning, instructing and assessing students.
High School & Beyond!
District’s Advisory Program helps prepare students for the future
Believe it or not, Spanaway Lake High School used to be home to a few preschool classes. That’s where Jessica Clairmont began her early school years. As a “Bethel kid,” she continued school through Graham Elementary, Frontier Junior High (now Frontier Middle), and graduated from Graham-Kapowsin High School. But today you can find her back at SLHS, now as a teacher of ELA and Advisory.
Students have Advisory each year they are in high school. The class is one of their graduation requirements and is an important time when students can connect with teachers.