Walla Walla Public Schools
Wednesday, 04 February 2015

Winter 2014-15 Message

Dear Blue Ridge Students and Families-
We have had an excellent start to the beginning of the school year. I cannot believe that we are already nearing Winter Break. Times flies when you are having fun and working hard. At Blue Ridge we've been doing both.
I want to share with you some things that have been happening. First, we have a number of new staff members with us this year. Some veterans of the teaching profession, and some beginning teachers coming to us with great new ideas fresh from their schooling. We have new support staff to support learning, and we have other new support staff to care for our building and to keep us well fed at mealtimes. In addition, our after-school program continues to grow by leaps and bounds. Not only do we have our amazing Talent Program, but we boast several new offerings to help our students gain critical skills as well as introduce them to a wider world of ideas. We have partnered with the YMCA and with volunteers from Whitman College. It is amazing to me the wealth of community support we enjoy in Walla Walla, and it makes me proud to be able to offer our students quality care and extended opportunities for learning.
In addition, we have some amazing things happening with technology in our building. We are in the beginning stages of introducing the use of Chromebooks to our students. What an amazing thing technology is! In my walk-throughs of the building, I see students actively engaged when using technology in a way I find exciting. Students will learn keyboarding and computer coding skills. Come spring, we will be testing and much of that will happen on computers and on the Chromebooks. Children have a natural proclivity to learn via the use of technology, and I embrace this new mode and I hope you will ask your students what they are learning in this field. STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) careers are going to be in high demand in the future, and it pleases me that we are able to begin training our students for this eventuality in the here and now.
On December 19th we welcome parents, families, and guardians to our Holiday Concert. It will look a bit different this year, but I am excited for you to see what students and staff have pulled together to present to you! The sound of children's voices in song is one of the very best sounds I know. I hope you can join us!
Please, if you have questions, concerns, or ideas that may help us run things more smoothly at Blue Ridge, do not hesitate to let me know. My door is open. I look forward to hearing from you. You are key in your student's education. Let's work together!
With the Warmest Wishes of the Season,
Kim Doepker