BSD Staff Updates

2021-22 Issue #6: Thursday, October 28, 2021

News, Information and Updates for Bremerton School District staff.

View archives here.

We want your thoughts!

While we are navigating through the start of a new school year and continued COVID impacts, we see potential opportunities when looking forward toward the future. One potential opportunity relates to rethinking how we structure learning and our academic calendar.

We would like to use this opportunity to reflect with our community on how we are best supporting student success related to the school calendar. We want to ensure our school calendar is reflective of the needs of our community and gather input on how we can best meet those needs.

Please take a moment to share your thoughts in our "ThoughtExchange" survey and then rate at least 20-30 of the thoughts survey that others have shared.

Some things to note:

  • This survey was shared with families and the community in Monday's BSD Family Update and on Facebook (Thank you to those who have already responded!).

  • This exchange is confidential.

  • Your thoughts will be shared, but not your identity.

  • Please be polite and respectful as you share and rate thoughts.

  • If you see a thought that is rude, hurtful or identifies a person or group, you can report it by clicking in the upper right corner of the thought.

  • You do not need to rate all thoughts in this exchange.

This ThoughtExchange Survey will be open until Sunday, November 7 so we hope you will visit it often until then to rate new ideas.

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Coming soon: Fall Panorama Survey (AKA: Family-School Relationship Survey)

The Panorama Survey is administered to parents, students, and staff two times per year in the Bremerton School District.

Fall Survey Dates:

  • Teachers/Students: November 1-19
  • Parents/Community: November 8-21 (to avoid overlapping with the Balanced Calendar Thought Exchange)

The Panorama Teacher Survey gathers feedback from teachers about their perceptions of their professional learning opportunities, their confidence in the classroom, their relationships with colleagues, students' families, and the school leadership, and their feelings about the school's climate. More information is forthcoming from your Department Chair and is available on the BSD Teach Google Site. Your participation is greatly appreciated!

We will be doing outreach to families to promote the survey and encourage participation.

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October is Filipino American History Month

October is Filipino American History Month. Click here for resources!
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October is Disabilities Awareness Month

Check out the video that was shared at the October 7 board meeting. Click here for resources!

November recognition & celebrations resources

We want to highlight optional, supplemental resources for national events and celebrations that are happening this month. You can choose to integrate the optional supplemental resources into core instruction to acknowledge events. Pages have been created for the following events:

These pages are linked to the Back to School section and the Learning section of BSDteach. You can find the full BSD Recognition Calendar here.

Download the new District Recognition Calendar!

Find a link to this calendar on the "For Staff" quick links page, or at

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New! Free online tutoring for grades 3-12!

We are pleased to offer free online tutoring through TutorMe for all Bremerton School District students in grades 3-12. Students can access TutorMe through Clever.

More information is available on the District's Family Technology Support website.

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Gaggle Teletherapy: confidential, free online therapy

Learn more at Resources for staff wanting to refer students can be found in this shared folder.

Teachers: Please consider adding a Gaggle Teletherapy graphic to your Google Classroom and Google Site. Please link to or

Washington Youth Academy ads

Check out these new ads for the Washington Youth Academy that will air on KOMO TV, KUNS TV, OTT, and a variety of streaming platforms.

PCHS Clinic at Mountain View Middle School now open Monday through Friday

Our PCHS clinic at Mountain View Middle School is now open Monday through Friday and provides services (including COVID testing!) for all Bremerton School District students and staff.

The clinic serves Bremerton School District students (preschool - 12th grade) and staff. Learn more at

Applying for a grant?

Please review the District grant guidelines before completing your application. A pre-application request must be submitted for grants >$500.

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Highlights from October 21, 2021

The Board approved a Collective Bargaining Agreement and other related MOU’s, etc. from several of our bargaining units as follows:

· CBA with the Bremerton Professional Education Assn. (BPEA) for 2021-24

· MOU with the Bremerton Education Assn. (BEA) regarding health & safety concerns

· MOU with the Service Employees Int’l Union (SEIU) in regard to Leave, Re-employment, and health & safety concerns related to the COVID 19 pandemic.


The Board accepted the recommendation by the Business Office to contract with Rognlin’s, Inc. to install new windows at Kitsap Lake Elementary School. This work will be scheduled for summer 2022.

Assistant Superintendent Garth Steedman asked the Board to consider a new funding measure that would place a 2-year replacement Capital Levy on the February 8, 2022 ballot. Levy funds would continue our work modernizing school facilities and increasing opportunities for students and community by improving the outdoor athletics facilities and creating a School & Community Sports and Fitness Complex at Mountain View Middle School. Dr. Steedman will prepare a resolution for the Board to consider prior to the county’s December 10th deadline.

The Board approved their own and the Superintendent’s Goals for the 2021/22 school year.

The Bremerton Backpack Brigade (BBB) presented a brief update to the Board and took the time to honor Dr. Leavell for the district’s partnership and support. Myra Battin and Brooke Holst were present and thanked Dr. Leavell for his “generosity and forward-leaning leadership” that has helped to create a unique partnership, which has allowed the Brigade to serve families at eight of our elementary schools and three alternative schools. Dr. Leavell was invited to serve as an honorary member of the Brigade’s Board of Directors.

Steve Bartlett provided a Technology Update to the Board reporting on devices being provided to students, projects that have been completed to date as well as upcoming projects that address equity and accessibility for all students and online and building safety. Kudos were given to the entire Technology Dept. for their work preparing, refreshing and distributing devices and providing support to staff and families as we continue to use remote learning and more technology in the classrooms.

Policy News

There were no new policies or procedures brought to the Board this meeting.

To view any of these documents, you may also visit

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Shout Out to Mavis Hamrick

The staff at WHSA want to give Mavis Hamrick a big shout-out! Mavis has worked in the District for 32+ years as a paraeducator. She has overseen the Safety patrol for the last 10+ years and supports WHSA students by working in the Green Room. She is part of the social committee, is a mentor to new paraeducators, has held multiple positions in BPEA, and has also been involved with the WHSA PTA.

Mavis has volunteered countless hours for family nights. During COVID when CNS asked for help, she made hundreds of breakfast & lunch sacks and even rode on the bus for student support. Mavis loves to work with the kindergarten kiddos, her patrols and with small groups (and she loves providing treats for her kids!).

Mavis has many friends throughout the District. To this day she stumbles upon former students who are now have kids of their own. It uplifts her to know they still remember her. Thank you Mavis for your years of dedication and hard work.

Bremerton School Board named "Board of Distinction" for 2021

For the fourth year in a row, the Bremerton School Board has been named a "Board of Distinction" for 2021 for medium-sized school districts (2,001-9,000 student FTE).

To be awarded, boards had to show a clear link between their leadership in applying the Washington School Board Standards and closing gaps that impact student success.

All 34 boards receiving this honor will be honored on Nov. 19 during the WSSDA Annual Conference.

Congratulations and THANK YOU to the Bremerton School Board Directors for their tireless dedication to the Bremerton School District.

Learn more here.

NA Dolphins appreciate Principal John Welsh!

The Dolphins at Naval Avenue honor John Welsh for Principal's month. John's team at Naval appreciates him for allowing them to show their strengths and to lead alongside him. They appreciate that John always looks for the positive in situations, supports them when in need, and most of all celebrates them with their great works and accomplishments.

The students at Naval get a kick out of Mr. Welsh's funny antics when he jumps in their line in the hallway and when he randomly takes a seat in their classrooms waiting for instruction from the teacher, they can't help but laugh.

Thank you for all that you do for our school, John! Happy Principal's Month.

Happy Principals Month, Teneka Morley Short!

Teneka Morley Short is described by her staff as a fearless leader.

"She steps in with out hesitation and is always calm. She builds relationships with everyone and prides herself in making those connections meaningful, and it shows! She is the best"--Emily Bach, Crownhill Office Coordinator.

BHS appreciates its new leadership team!

"At the end of the last school year, Bremerton High School was shaken by the many changes of leadership that we experienced. We have been blessed with new people who are excited to be here, full of enthusiasm and knowledge, and are working hard to keep Bremerton High the amazing place that it is. We are happy to welcome Ryan Nickels as our new Principal - a huge job but he is up to the task. Lowell Thomson and Melanie Garrett have joined as Assistant Principals. Change is hard, but change can be good!" --Marilyn McClelland, BHS Office Coordinator

BHS ASB appreciates their principals!

BHS ASB Executive officers created door signs for Ryan Nickels and vice principals Melanie Garrett and Lowell Thomson and personally thanked them for the many things that they do to support BHS students and ASB programs.

Pictured below are our BHS administrators and ASB Executive officers.

RHS staff recognize Mark Mayfield during Principal's Month

The staff Renaissance wanted to thank Mark for Principal's month, by recognizing the fact he is always on the run. Between Renaissance and the West Hills Restorative School it seems like he never stops to breathe.

The staff wanted him to at least try to slow down a bit so they focused his gift basket on the theme of "relax". It included items such as teas, hot chocolate, chocolate, a candle, a Starbucks gift card, smoked Salmon w/crackers, brownie mix.... plus a book on bicycling since he enjoys bike riding.

Mark - you are appreciated! Happy Principal's Month!

AJ Principal Mr. Wisner Rocks!

If you were to walk through AJ this month, you'd see a whole lotta door posters telling Mr. Wisner how much he is loved and appreciated by students and staff. You rock, Ralph!

Allan Anderson and Wendy McPhetres complete half marathon

Allan Anderson and Wendy McPhetres completed the Larry Scott Half Marathon in Port Townsend on October 16. ) Allan came in 1st in his division and Wendy came in 2nd in her division.

The start line was windy and cold. The announcer was trying to find his recording of the national anthem. Wendy started singing because she was cold and ready to start running. Other runners around her heard her and pushed her to the microphone. So… she sang for the event without any notice!

"Nothing like having the national anthem in your back pocket on a cold, windy morning before running 13.1 miles!" --Wendy McPhetres

Thank you BHS Class of 1979!

Over the last 40+ years a group of classmates from the class of 1979 and family have gotten together to enjoy a day of friendship, memories and golf. As the event grew a decision was made to give back to Bremerton education and athletics. Over the past 12+ years, the Class of 1979 has donated more than $15k to BHS and local elementary schools to help support a variety of programs.

Each year, the winning team of the tournament (79 Open) gets to choose where they want the donation to go.

This years winning team (Team Bergsma) has elected a donation in the amount of $2k go to the boys and girls golf teams at BHS.

"We are excited to give this donation to the golf team to help support their needs and success in 2021-22" said Tony Boddie, member of the class of 1979 (pictured below with Ryan Nickels).

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Dr. Leavell named honorary board member for Bremerton Backpack Brigade

Dr. Aaron Leavell was named honorary board member for Bremerton Backpack Brigade. Board members from BBB surprised Dr. Leavell at the last board meeting with an award and the honorary board member designation.
Got a shout-out for someone in your school or in the community doing great things to support our students? Please email!

The SEBB Program’s annual open enrollment begins October 25

Reminder! The School Employees Benefits Board (SEBB) Program’s annual open enrollment begins Monday, October 25, 2021 and ends Monday, November 22, 2021.

Open enrollment is your opportunity to make changes to your health plan benefits. Changes are effective January 1, 2022.

  • What changes can you make? The SEBB Program’s annual open enrollment is your opportunity to:
    • Change medical and dental plans.
    • Add or remove dependents.
    • Reattest to the spouse or state-registered domestic partner premium surcharge (SRDP) (if you received a letter asking you to reattest.)
    • Enroll in the Medical FSA, Limited Purpose FSA (new for 2022), or DCAP through Navia Benefit Solutions.
    • Consider your long-term disability insurance coverage (changes are coming for 2022).
    • Waive your medical coverage if you are enrolled in other employer-based group medical, a TRICARE plan, or Medicare.
    • Enroll in medical coverage if you previously waived.
  • Learn more about the changes you can make on our open enrollment webpage and in the October Intercom
  • How do I make changes? Log in to SEBB My Account starting October 25, 2021.

If you have questions about your benefits or account, please contact Stephenie L. Nagle

Benefits Specialist / Receptionist at 360.473.1021 or

Resources for open enrollment

There are multiple ways to learn about benefits from the comfort of your home.

  • Virtual benefits fairs – During open enrollment, you can learn more about your health plans and other insurance options by visiting the virtual benefits fair.
  • ALEX – Help you understand your SEBB benefits and guide you through choosing your medical, dental, and vision plans. ALEX will suggest plans for you to consider, based on your responses to questions. Access ALEX at and within SEBB My Account.
  • Webinars – Attend a webinar provided by our carriers and vendors. See the schedule.
  • Facebook Live – Join us on HCA’s Facebook on Monday, November 2 at 4 p.m.
  • Web content – Visit the SEBB Open enrollment
  • Intercom newsletter – The newsletter includes information about the changes to benefits, what changes you can make during annual open enrollment and how to make them, monthly premiums, and more. Read the October Intercom. Note: Since the newsletter was released, there have been clarifications about Kaiser Permanente of Washington’s (KPWA) and KPWA Option’s networks that could affect your coverage. Read the announcement on HCA’s website to learn more.
  • Need help? Contact Stephenie L. Nagle, Benefits Specialist / Receptionist at 360.473.1021 or

Long Term Care Tax - Reminder

Once again, I'd like to remind you the new state mandated payroll tax for Long Term Care will begin in January 2022.

To claim an exemption, you have to have a valid Long Term Care policy in place by November 1, 2021. There are not many state LTC approved insurance carriers offering stand alone LTC coverage at this time, so if you want to try to get one in place, you need to start the process sooner than later.

You have until December 31, 2022 to file for an exemption.

You have to apply for the exemption through Employment Security. Please follow this link: and scroll down to "Applying for an Exemption" to get the instructions.

After you receive your exemption letter you will need to provide a copy of it to all your employers – now and in the future.

Please note BSD is not involved in the exemption process at all. It is all being handled through the Employment Security Department.

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New "Test to Stay" program for students

We have a new "Test to Stay" program for our students. Any unvaccinated student who has been identified as a close contact while at school may continue to attend classes as long as they test at school every other morning before class during their quarantine. They will not be allowed to participate in extracurricular activities and should quarantine when not at school for the entirety of their quarantine. If you would like to learn more about the program please see page 13-15 in the DOH Supplemental Considerations... in K12 schools. As always please reach out to our district COVID supervisor if you have any further questions,

The Test to Stay program was featured in the Kitsap Sun this week.

Looking for COVID information?

Look for this graphic and link on the homepage, or click on the "FOR STAFF" tab on any District or school web page which takes you to the staff quick links & resources page.
BSD Community Resource Page

We've got information on Toys for Tots and free Thanksgiving meals on our Community Resources page. Check it out!

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Bremerton Substance Abuse Prevention Coalitions Annual Survey

The Bremerton Substance Abuse Prevention Coalitions invite you to participate in their annual community survey. The Coalitions are seeking 300 completed surveys by December 15, 2021.

The goal is to assess attitudes, beliefs, and practices related to youth substance use and behavioral health in our community.

The completed surveys will be utilized to guide our work, and to develop effective substance abuse prevention programs for our community.

Grant funds available!

Per the BSD Grant Guidelines, Please talk to your principal before applying for these grants. District pre-approval is not required.
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Background photo: Fall at MVMS (photo by Larry Steagall).

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