January 14, 2022



Monday, 1/17 - No School - Martin Luther King Jr Day

Monday, 1/24 - Thursday, 1/27 - Discovery on Remote Learning

Monday, 1/24 - 2 hour late start

Friday, 1/28- No School - Semester Break

Monday, 1/31 - Semester Switch


The return to school after winter break has been significantly impacted by COVID. We have had about 25% of students absent every day for the past 2 weeks. Teachers have been posting assignments on Canvas for the 25% of students who are not in school, but we know this is not a substitution for being present in class. At Discovery, we have also been impacted by the shortage of substitute teachers. Our building staff has stepped up and been covering classes for teachers who do not have a sub by teaching other subjects during their prep periods. This is why you might hear students mention that their Math teacher taught PE or Band for the day. We appreciate the partnership of our parents. Thank you for keeping in touch with our attendance office regarding absences and contacting the school for positive COVID cases. If your child tests positive at the VPS testing center, we are automatically notified. If your child tests positive through a home test or another location, please make sure to contact the school as soon as possible so that we can complete contact tracing at the building level and notify and close contacts. We are hopeful for a downturn in the state-wide transmission rate of COVID so that we can get more students and staff back into the building.


Discovery will be on remote learning for 4 days January 24-27th. This means students will not attend school, but will instead complete their school online from home. Students will use their iPads. Teachers will have live instruction on Zoom and assignments will be submitted on Canvas. Teachers will work with students next week to make sure all students can access Canvas, Zoom and email. Monday, January 24th will be a 2 hour late start. We will send out a bell schedule for students so they know when to log into classes throughout the day. There is no school on Friday, January 28th due to the semester break. Boys basketball will be on hold during the 4 days we are remote.


Monday, Janaury 31st is the beginning of the second half of the year. In middle school, we run on trimesters, but our PE/Tech classes switch at the semester break because they are half year courses. Students in PE will move to Technology classes on this date. Students in Technology will move to PE. Dressing down for PE is optional this year. Students will have a locker to keep any clothes/shoes they need for class and to lock up their backpack and belongings during class.


We are in the process of recognizing fall trimester academic and attendance achievements. Certificates and treats will be awarded at school to students with a GPA greater than 3.5 and to students with greater than 95% attendance for Trimester 1. Students with a GPA over 3.0 but under 3.5 will also receive certificates.

We wish safety protocols didn't prevent us from holding an event parents can attend, but we hope you will celebrate your student's achievement. 8th grade honors were given the week of January 10. 7th grade will be the week of Jan 18, and 6th grade the week of January 31.


Please remind your child about the importance of properly wearing a mask. The majority of our students do an amazing job with mask wearing. Our biggest issue is students who do not cover their noses with their masks. We constantly remind students to pull up their masks. Thank you for supporting us and helping us to keep the spread of COVID as low as possible so that we can continue in person instruction.


Every year 8th grade students in MYP schools participate in a Community Project. The project is student-centered and allows for an exploration through a cycle of inquiry, action, and reflection. This is important for developing lifelong learners.

This year 2 opportunities will be made available in the Toolbox during 3rd lunch (8th grade lunch) with support from the MYP Coordinator, Mr. Phelan, and the Teacher-Librarian, Ms. Lowe. The project will run for 8 weeks, from the week of January 17th through the week of March 10th. Two projects will be made available, Discovery Rocks and Discovery Cares.

In this, students will work through the inquiry cycle, take action, and reflect on the process.

The Community Project is a community event. Each project will involve a group of students (1-3) who will work through the inquiry cycle, take action, and present together. Bring a few friends! Students who complete the MYP Community Project are eligible for the 8th grade MYP Service Project award at the end of the year. All those who complete the project will also be recognized at the end of the year award ceremony.

Mark Phelan


Current 6th and 7th graders will be selecting their elective for next year during the week of January 24th-27th. You can view your student's choices HERE



Families can sign up for a free weekly small food bag. The bag contains canned fruit and veggies, non-perishable items, and a snack. Bags can go home with your student or they can be picked up by parents if they would like. You can sign up in the following: English, Spanish, or Russian. If you prefer to call to sign up in, either Spanish or English, please call Amalia Franco 360-313-3322. Paper forms are also available in the Family-Community Resource Center.


Any family is VPS can go to any Fresh Food Pantry on the flyer. All you will need is the birthdates and names for each person in the household if you are attending for the first time. Families can go to one or all the food families if they wish. A complete list of pantries and dates can be found HERE.


Next week we will be taking the iReady assessment in Reading and Math. Students will take this assessment during their Math and English classes. Students need to complete the assessment by Friday, February 11th. The winter assessment is extremely important because we use the data from this assessment in order to place students into the appropriate classes for next school year.


In following district policy, elementary and middle school students are not permitted to carry any medication. All medication, even over the counter meds/cough drops/etc. need to be delivered to the office with a doctor's note and in their original packaging. As an alternative, parents are welcome to come to the building and meet their child in the office to personally give medication, but students cannot have medication on them at school.


This year the WIDA (English Language Proficiency Assessment) will be taking place during February with make ups in March. All students who qualify for English Language Services will be taking this assessment.



In following district policy, elementary and middle school students are not permitted to carry any medication. All medication, even over the counter meds/cough drops/etc. need to be delivered to the office with a doctor's note and in their original packaging. As an alternative, parents are welcome to come to the building and meet their child in the office to personally give medication, but students cannot have medication on them at school.

PARENTS OF SIXTH GRADE STUDENTS: It is not too early to start planning to update your student’s immunizations. Washington State requires a Tdap booster to be given after the eleventh birthday and before entering seventh grade to be able to attend school. Don’t wait until summer, beat the rush, and help your student transition into seventh grade smoothly. Make a well-child appointment for immunization after their eleventh birthday so they are ready to start school in the fall.

No insurance? Call SeaMar Clinic: 360-852-9070

Ask for an appointment to receive school immunization and bring your child’s immunization record with you when you go. Their address is 14508 NE 20th Ave, Suite 102, Vancouver. Questions? Cannot locate immunization record? Email Tracey Knotts RN/ school nurse: tracey.knotts or call the school @ 360-313-3300 for assistance.


We will be hosting our monthly coffee with the principal meeting on January 19th from 2:30-3:30pm in-person at Discovery Middle School. This will be a welcoming environment for all parents to share their thoughts and feedback.



Attention all 5th–11th graders:

Learn about the variety of programs that Vancouver Public Schools offers to help students recognize and achieve their academic and career goals. Our programs are designed to help students discover their unique gifts. Students must apply to magnet programs and programs of choice for the 2022-23 school year. The application period will is currently open.


Parents may choose to have their children ages 5-11 vaccinated against COVID-19. The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine received emergency-use approval by the FDA and CDC on Nov. 2. Interested parents should contact their healthcare provider or local pharmacies about availability and scheduling. VPS is not offering vaccinations at district schools.

The COVID-19 vaccine is not required for student enrollment in Vancouver Public Schools. We have no indication that a COVID-19 vaccine would become a required vaccination this school year. The Washington state Board of Health determines which vaccines are required for schools and child care and has begun exploring whether to add COVID-19 vaccination to the state’s list of immunizations required for school entry in future years.

Students who are fully vaccinated and not showing symptoms are not required to quarantine if they are a close contact of someone who tests positive.

The Pfizer vaccine for children 5-11 years old is administered as a two-dose series, three weeks apart, but is a lower dose (10 micrograms) than that used for individuals 12 years of age and older (30 micrograms).

More information can be found on the state Department of Health website.

The American Academy of Pediatrics created a video to help families understand how the vaccine works. (


If you will be using the district COVID testing location please be sure to pre-register


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