Aberdeen Schools

Helping you stay informed about our district.

Aberdeen School District No. 5 -- December 18, 2020

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Look who made time to visit our schools

Some drop-offs and pick-ups took place this week at several of our schools, and the big guy himself took a few moments out of his schedule to help our principals and staff make sure students have what they need.

All of us at ASD5 are wishing you a safe and happy Winter Break.

Bring it on, 2021. We are ready!

Governor announces new metrics for return to school

On Wednesday, Governor Inslee announced new metrics, guidelines and regulations from the Department of Health and Labor & Industries for re-opening schools.

“All of us are excited at the prospect of seeing our students in their classrooms and we are looking forward to bringing back our furloughed workers," Superintendent Alicia Henderson said. "We will be working to align our Reopening Plan with the new metrics and will share that information with our labor partners as soon as possible."

Superintendent Henderson expressed confidence that the district’s Reopening Plan will be ready for School Board review at the next meeting on January 19. PreK-3rd Grades will return first, ideally by February 1.

The district had been preparing to bring PreK-3rd Grade back in a hybrid model last August, but case counts exceeded the threshold and the plan was paused.

Under the new metrics, given current case counts on Grays Harbor, only the youngest learners should be brought back. “It appears that we will initially be looking at small groups (cohorts) of 15 at a time, in a hybrid model,” the superintendent said.

“Health and safety precautions for our students and our staff are paramount in the decision-making process,” Superintendent Henderson said. She noted that the district had already begun an HVAC assessment. “We also know that Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is essential, and we are revisiting all current supplies and procedures. I am confident we will meet the high standards expected at this time.”

Dr. Henderson encourages everyone to remember the 3Ws -- Wear a mask, Wash your hands, and Watch your distance -- "so that we can bring all of our students back as soon as possible."

Read the Decision Making Guidance for Schools from Department of Health

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Rotary Student of the Month

Connar Sherman is the Aberdeen Rotary Club’s Student of the Month for December.

Connar is the son of Henry and Racquel Sherman and Sarah and Josh Mayr. He has participated since seventh grade in the district’s AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) college prep program and has a grade-point average of 3.95.

He plays football, basketball and baseball at AHS. A three-year letterman in football, he also earned the 4.0 GPA Award in football, as well as the “Hum-Babe” GPA Award in baseball. He volunteers with local youth football and baseball programs, as well as Foodball.

Connar’s parents are essential workers, so in addition to his own studies, he has been assisting and encouraging his four younger siblings and several classmates with their distance learning studies. He also endeavors to stay connected with teammates so they can all support each other during this time.

Connar plans to attend to the University of Puget Sound, where he will play football and work toward a bachelor’s degree in economics and computer science.

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Health & Wellness activities available to Aberdeen students

The Aberdeen School District and YMCA of Grays Harbor have teamed up to offer free activities to students enrolled in the Aberdeen School District.

Students may sign up through the YMCA. Activities will challenge students physically while providing a much needed social break in a healthy environment and include:

Register online at ghymca.net. Masks required and social distancing strictly enforced.

Need more information? Contact Sarah Channel at: schannel@ghymca.net

Aberdeen School District Board of Directors

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Summary of the December 15 meeting

President Sandra Bielski convened the regular meeting of the Aberdeen School District Board of Directors at 5:00 p.m. Tuesday, December 15, 2020, via webinar following guidance for conducting remote meetings in compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act. Directors present were Jennifer Durney, Bill Dyer, Jessica Jurasin and Suzy Ritter, along with Student Representative Brooke Solan, Superintendent Alicia Henderson and 27 patrons and staff watching remotely.

The meeting began with a playing of the National Anthem by junior high cellist Eli Pratt.

Minutes, Bills, Trips & Gifts

The Board approved the Consent Agenda, which included:

  • The minutes from the meeting on November 17, 2020;
  • Payroll vouchers totaling $2,822,931.38;
  • General Fund vouchers totaling $570,328.31;
  • ASB Fund vouchers totaling $40,964.80, and
  • Private Purpose Trust Fund vouchers totaling $2,500.00.

Election of Officers

The Board elected officers for the upcoming year:

  • Sandra Bielski, president;
  • Bill Dyer, vice president;
  • Jessica Jurasin, legislative representative, and
  • Jennifer Durney, WIAA representative.

Comments from Board members

Director Bill Dyer offered a remembrance to Nancy Neisinger, who died Nov. 28. He noted she was retired from the district after 27 years as a music educator, and remembered her as a kind and talented individual who was committed to her community.

Directors Suzy Ritter, Jennifer Durney and Jessica Jurasin thanked the administration and staffs of the district and YMCA of Grays Harbor for putting together the activity and wellness pods.

Comments from Student Representative

Student Representative Brooke Solan provided a report. She discussed spirit week at Aberdeen High School, the activity and conditioning pods that are now available to students, a PBIS Social Zoom that more than 40 students participated in, and the upcoming ASB Kahoot night, which is another Zoom event students have organized for fun and socializing.

Old Business

Policy 3510 Associated Student Bodies

The board approved an update to Policy 3510 – Associated Student Bodies, adding language that waives certain fees for homeless and low-income students in compliance with state law.

Superintendent’s Report

Budget Advisory Committee: Superintendent Henderson reported that the Budget Advisory Committee met on December 10. The year-end report for 2019-2020 showing the district met its goal of maintaining a 5 percent fund balance was shared, and concerns about declining enrollment, which most school districts are experiencing. The impact on funding for schools won’t become clear until the Legislature meets, she said.

Distance Learning Update: Superintendent Henderson shared information about continuing to plan for students to return to school. She noted there will be a significant need to address learning gaps. She said she’s seeing some amazing collaboration among the teaching staff and that Aberdeen’s distance learning model is among the best. However, she noted that like most districts, Zoom fatigue and keeping students engaged is an ongoing challenge.

COVID-19 Response: Superintendent Henderson praised the maintenance and operations staff for the work they are doing to prepare for students and staff to return to school. She expects that the district will be dealing with COVID impacts for the long haul and that much work is being done to use spaces innovatively, including outdoor spaces, and to ensure adequate ventilation and air flow.

Superintendent Henderson also discussed the new Health and Wellness Program, a major initiative between the district and the YMCA of Grays Harbor to create outdoor activities for students and athletes.

Teaching and Learning

English Language Learning: Principal Jamie Stotler presented a report on the district’s English Language Learning (ELL) program.

Financial Services

Year-End Report: Executive Director of Business and Operations Elyssa Louderback presented the year-end financial report for 2019-2020. She reported that the district achieved its goal of a 5 percent ending fund balance.

Fiscal Status Report: Director Louderback presented the Fiscal Status Report for November.

New Business

Skills Center Agreement: The board approved the interdistrict agreement with the Tumwater School District for operation of the Twin Harbors Branch of the New Market Skills Center.

Quinault Services: The board approved an agreement with the Quinault Indian Nation to provide services in the district to member students.

Athletic Services Contract: The board approved a personal services contract with Trinity Parris to provide concussion protocol and other athletic services in the district.

Health & Wellness Activities Contract: The board approved contracts with the YMCA of Grays Harbor to provide staffing and support for implementation of outdoor activities in the Health and Wellness Program.

Audio/Electronic Services Contract: The board approved a personal services contract with William Rabung to provide support for athletic conditioning in the Health & Wellness Program, especially operation of all electronics from the announcer’s booth at Stewart Field.

Personnel Report

Following an executive session, the board approved the personnel matters.

Next Meeting of the Board

The next meeting of the School Board is scheduled for 5 p.m. Tuesday, January 19, via webinar. You can find agenda materials and a link to join the meeting on the asd5 website prior to the meeting. Materials are often posted as early as Friday before the meeting.

Written public comment is accepted until 3:30 p.m. the day of the meeting. Public comment should be submitted to schoolboard@asd5.org. Comments are shared with the board and become part of the online meeting record.

The award-winning Quinault Yearbook makes a great gift for the Bobcat in your family!

Click on the photo above to visit the YearbookOrderCenter.com. Our school code is 7588.

Parent-to-Parent help is on the way

The Aberdeen School District, in partnership with some parent volunteers, will provide online weekly technology help sessions on Wednesdays at 7 p.m. The first session is set for January 13.

The primary focus will be Canvas support and sharing to help our parents navigate this Learning Management System. Parents will be able to register for any session and submit questions or topics ahead of time. Sessions will be provided via Zoom and are open to parents of any age students in our district.

Online options available

Enrollment in online schools has increased throughout our state this year as families endeavor to find the best option for their students while in-person instruction is on hold.

Families who are considering an online option are encouraged to first explore our district's online school -- Grays Harbor Academy -- because we want to keep you in our ASD5 community.

Grays Harbor Academy is fully online, uses Edgenuity courses taught by Washington state certified teachers, and is available to students in Grades 3-12. The courses operate on a semester system. Enrollment requests are now being accepted for students to begin classes on January 25.

Lynn Green is the principal of Grays Harbor Academy and she can be contacted at 360-538-2038 or lgreen@asd5.org.

State rolls out smartphone app

WA Notify is a free notification tool to help stop the spread of COVID-19. By adding WA Notify to their smartphones, Washington residents will be alerted if they spent time near another WA Notify user who tests positive for COVID-19.

Visit WA Notify on the state Department of Health website for more information.

Staying in touch with Leadership


The Aberdeen School District does not discriminate in any programs or activities on the basis of sex, race, creed, religion, color, national origin, age, veteran or military status, sexual orientation, gender expression or identity, disability, or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. The following employees have been designated to handle questions and complaints of alleged discrimination: Christi Sayres, Title IX Coordinator and Civil rights Compliance Coordinator, 216 North G St., Aberdeen, WA 98520; (360) 538-2222; csayres@asd5.org; Dr. Richard Bates, Section 504/ADA Coordinator, 216 North G St., Aberdeen, WA 98520; (360) 538-2017; rbates@asd5.org.