December 16, 2021
Staff Appreciation Week at SBLSD
It’s Staff Appreciation Week, and we want to give a big shout-out to all staff who work here at the Sumner-Bonney Lake School District. From teachers to nurses, campus security officers to bus drivers, thank you, staff, for all you do.
Leading up to Staff Appreciation Week, we asked students to share what they appreciate about staff, and how they feel known, valued and supported at school. Watch the video below to hear what they have to say.
'Prepared for the real thing.’ Partnership, planning pays off in lahar drill
When asked why it’s important to practice lahar drills, Maple Lawn Elementary fifth grader Morgan G. didn’t beat around the bush:
“It's very important for lahar drills to happen because if we don't do lahar drills, we won't know what to do and everyone's going to be running around screaming,” he said.
Morgan went on to explain that a lahar is a big, hot mudflow that can occur when a volcano - such as Mount Rainier - erupts, melting ice and creating a moving wall of dirt and debris that can destroy nearly everything in its path.
Fortunately for Morgan and his classmates, they practiced how to evacuate in a regional lahar drill on April 29.
The Sumner-Bonney Lake School District was one of five school districts in the region to participate in the exercise, deemed to be the largest full-scale drill in the nation. SBLSD’s valley schools - Sumner High School, Elhi Hill High School Program, Sumner Middle School, Daffodil Valley Elementary, Maple Lawn Elementary and the Sumner Early Learning Center - all evacuated school by walking to the Gordon Family YMCA, where they were bused back to school. SBLSD’s remaining schools on the hill practiced a “shelter in place” drill. If this were a real emergency, students would continue to walk from the YMCA up the hill to Bonney Lake, where students would be sheltered in our hill schools.
In total, more than 25,000 people across the region participated in the drill, with about 14,200 people evacuating and 11,600 people sheltering in place. In the Sumner-Bonney Lake School District, about 3,600 staff and students evacuated and 7,200 staff and students practiced sheltering in place.
The drill was meant to familiarize students and staff with evacuation routes to higher ground and give them the practice and knowledge to be prepared for a real-life evacuation.
In that regard, the drill succeeded, if you ask Maple Lawn Elementary Principal Elli McDaniel.
“I learned that we are absolutely prepared for the real thing,” she said. “It's all in the preparation and educating our students on what to do and why it's important. They were kind, they were respectful and they followed our Husky Way expectations, which is all about safety. And they did a fantastic job.”
Sumner Police Chief Brad Moericke also saw the drill as a success.
“Undertaking an exercise of this scale and magnitude requires a lot of people, and a lot of hands, and a lot of work,” Moericke said. “The students and staff did an amazing job having an orderly, safe evacuation route.”
Maple Lawn third grader Elsie H. said that she and her classmates did really well in the drill - everyone was in line and not talking too loud, she said.
“I know that I can trust my teacher and she will guide me to where I need to go,” Elsie said.
A big thank you to the SBLSD staff and departments, local police departments and public works departments at the cities of Sumner and Bonney Lake for ensuring that the roads and evacuation routes were safe for our students and staff.
“It is important for our families to know that we take this seriously like any drill, whether it's a fire drill, a lockdown drill, or a lahar drill. We prepare and we plan for it and we practice and educate our kids because ultimately student safety is number one for us,” McDaniel said.
For more information, visit sumnersd.org/lahar.
BLHS senior sings her way to first place at state competition
BLHS senior Madison Z. took first place in the Soprano Voice category at the 2022 WIAA/WMEA State Solo and Ensemble Contest on April 30 in Ellensburg, Wash.
Madison competed against 43 singers from across the state's 22 regions, with about 40 sopranos per region, making her the top of about 800 sopranos!
This is the first time Bonney Lake High School has had a winner at the state contest, said BLHS Choir Director Amy Fuller, and not without a ton of hard work. Singers have been preparing since last year for state. Students had a regional competition this year, where SBLSD won 4 of 5 voice parts.
BLHS sophomore Ava R. and ninth graders Simon S. and Jacob Ludlow and also went to state. Simon competed in the Baritone Voice category, Jacob Ludlow competed in the Timpani (percussion) category, and Ava won third place in the Alto Voice category. SHS junior Jay M. also competed at state in the Tenor category.
May is Mental Health Awareness Month
Mental health wellness is an essential part of the overall health and well-being of both our students and staff. Mental health challenges affect all of us and the way we think, feel and act.
May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and we’re spreading awareness about what’s available to help staff and students. A list of resources and hotlines is available here on the Sumner-Bonney Lake School District website.
For our educators and staff, the Washington State Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provides counseling, webinars and other services and resources to promote the health, safety and well-being of public service employees.
Know that you are not alone.
Mental Health Awareness Event: May 23, 2022
In recognition of Mental Health Awareness Month in May, the Sumner-Bonney Lake School District is hosting a community Mental Health Awareness Event in partnership with Kids' Mental Health Pierce County and Coordinated Care to provide information and resources about mental health and mental health conditions.
The event will be hosted from 4-7:30 p.m. on Monday, May 23 at Sumner High School, 1707 Main Street, Sumner 98390.
A Community Resource Fair with agencies including MultiCare Behavioral Health, Greater Lakes, YES Sumner-Bonney Lake, Managed Care Organizations, and National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Pierce County will be held from 4-5 p.m. Free food will be available during this time.
Following the resource fair, the documentary film “My Ascension" - about a woman’s suicide attempt at 16 years old and her journey to use her experience to help others find hope - will then be screened at 5 p.m. The screening will be followed by a community panel Q&A at 6:30 p.m. focused on mental health, suicide prevention and crisis resources.
Two upcoming Recreation Department fun runs
The City of Bonney Lake/Sumner-Bonney Lake School District Recreation Department is partnering with Bonney Lake High School Baseball Boosters and the Sumner-Bonney Lake School District PE Department to offer two separate Fun Runs in June:
- Elementary Fun Run: June 4 at Allan Yorke Park
- Color Blaze 5K for all ages: June 18 at Allan Yorke Park
To learn more about registration forms, visit this link or contact the City of Bonney Lake/Sumner-Bonney Lake School District Recreation Department at (253) 891-6500.
May Meal Menus
Parent event: Understanding your highly capable student
Do you want to better understand and support your highly capable student? Families are invited to attend a free event to learn what research says about highly capable learners from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on May 10 at Lakeridge Middle School (5909 Myers Rd. E).
Guest speaker Austina De Bonte will describe what’s normal and what to expect at various ages and stages. She will also share the neuroscience that helps explain the behaviors common in highly capable children, where these behaviors come from and how to use these insights to better support your child.
For more information, contact Chris Anderson.
May School Board study session, meeting
The public is invited to attend School Board study sessions and meetings, which are held both virtually and in person. Please note that dates, times and locations are subject to change. Agendas are published a day prior to each meeting. Note: New date set for School Board Meeting, now May 16.
Study Session: May 10
- 6 p.m. Central Office (1202 Wood)
- Virtual meeting link (Passcode: 020614)
Board Meeting: May 16