Posts Tagged ‘Coupeville schools’

Coupeville students enjoy a tasty meal. (Photo property Coupeville School District)

Lunch is on them.

All students enrolled in Coupeville schools will receive free meals during the 2021-2022 school year.

Thanks to extended funding from the United State Department of Agriculture, students will enjoy lunches cooked by Chef Andreas Wurzrainer and his staff at no charge.

School meal account deposits will not be necessary.

“(We want to) ensure all students are fueled and ready to learn,” the Coupeville Connected Food Program said in a statement.

“Our goal is to offer ALL of our students delicious, healthy food that is served safely and efficiently this year.”

For September menus and more info, pop over to:


Read Full Post »

There’s a time for teaching, and a time for eating. This is the time for eating. (Photo courtesy Christi Messner)

It was more than a well-polished apple.

Community members came together this week and pooled financial resources to show appreciation to local teachers and support staff.

Led by Coupeville Elementary teacher Christi Messner, the effort produced a lunchtime repast to commemorate Teacher Appreciation Week.

But it wasn’t only teachers who benefited, as bus barn employees, custodians, maintenance, open den, food services, and district office workers joined them in chowin’ down.

Sunshine Drip provided the goods, with everyone getting sandwiches, cookies, chips, salad, and a variety of drinks.

Response was strongly positive.

“This is what small town USA is all about!,” said Pamela Davison-Schroeder. “I’ve lived all over this country, I’m proud to call Coupeville home. What an amazing group of beautiful people.”

Messner’s big sister, CHS/CMS Attendance Secretary Barbi Ford, agreed with the sentiment.

“Everyone at CMHS were very appreciative of all the effort that went into this event,” she said. “It was a big hit!

“Thank you Chris, for all you do to support everyone in our school!”

Messner actually raised enough money, she plans to buy gift certificates for local businesses, then hold a drawing to reward some lucky teachers.

And, it’s not too late to get in on the teacher love as our educators continue to provide a lifeline to students during the Age of Coronavirus.

To donate towards the gift certificates, use the allofus@whidbey.net account on PayPal or the Christi Messner account on Venmo.

Read Full Post »

Coupeville Schools Superintendent Steve King

As the world deals with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Coupeville plans to open the 2020-2021 school year with primarily online learning.

Superintendent Steve King released a letter to the community Thursday which said he and the school board are recommending the district start in Phase 2 of a 5-phase plan.

Called the “Remote and Connection Model,” it will incorporate “an improved remote learning model with additional in-person connections for at-school opportunities for specifically identified students.”

The school year is slated to begin September 14.

King’s letter:


Over the course of the summer we have been working on multiple options for trying to reopen schools this fall.

As we think about in-person school models, we are following the guidance provided by OSPI, the Governor, and the Department of Health that was provided in June.

This week we received updated K-12 Fall Guidance for opening schools and a K-12 Decision Tree that provides metrics for districts to make decisions about reopening.

The guidance documents include social distancing, face coverings, daily health screenings, and protocols for incidents of COVID exposure that could result in student and/or staff quarantines.

The K-12 Decision Tree puts Island County School Districts in the “Moderate Risk” category for reopening schools.

In addition to all of this guidance, we have surveyed our staff and families in both June and late July and we have reviewed the data from these surveys in order to best serve all of our stakeholders.

We also have been working closely with our local Island County Health Department, OSPI, district administration, union groups, and other school districts in the region to get as much input as possible in order to make this difficult decision.

We are also mindful of the current public health environment in our state and community.

Unfortunately, the rate of COVID infection and the concerns surrounding it have been on the rise over the summer.

We know we do our best work and serve our students, families, and community most effectively when we are able to teach children in our schools 100% of the time, however, it has become clear that we are just not able to fully reopen our schools to in-person instruction this fall.

Given all of these considerations, it is the consensus of our school board and administrative team that our schools open the 20-21 school year in Stage 2, which we are referring to as Coupeville’s Remote and Connection Model.

Coupeville’s Remote and Connection Model means opening schools on September 14 with an improved remote learning model and additional in-person connections for “at-school” opportunities for specifically identified students.

This would provide targeted students some opportunities for face-to-face instruction with staff, while minimizing person-to-person contact.

The additional Connection services would support students with special needs, English language learners, kindergartners, and other students “furthest from educational justice.”

We will also have a strong focus on supporting our students and families with social emotional health this fall which may lead to additional in-person work with students along with remote support.

Throughout this school year we will constantly review our plans, local health outcomes, and the K-12 Decision Tree in order to make school model changes.

Please see our current plans and stages for our phased approach to reopening on our website:


The rationale for this plan is as follows:

The public health environment and concern in regards to public health in our state and local community are not improving.

Opening with any in-person school model this fall will likely lead to staff and student cohorts quarantined due to exposures. It may also lead to extended school closures.

This would create significant disruptions and no predictable teaching/learning model.

Students and staff perform most effectively with a stable, consistent instructional plan where expectations for engagement and learning are clear and implemented.

Deciding on this approach now allows us to continue to focus on improving our remote model based upon the successes and lessons learned from our spring experience.

With more time for training and implementation we are very confident we will deliver a better distance learning model this fall.

Making this decision now allows staff to focus on opportunities for specifically identified students with unique needs such as kindergarteners and preschoolers, English language learners (ELL), students with special needs, and other students “furthest from educational justice” to have some level of in-person interaction with staff.

These will be tightly managed small group or individual experiences, adhering to all OSPI, Department of Health, and Governor’s Office guidance.

The current 58 pages of guidelines for reopening schools for in-person instruction would likely have a significant negative impact on the learning environment in our schools and classrooms.

At the next school board meeting, August 24, the board will be asked to approve this plan.

Sadly, this pandemic has challenged all of us in many ways. We recognize any change to our regular school model creates complications.

We make this decision with the strong belief that it is the safest option for our community as a whole.

I am so thankful for your patience and understanding during these unprecedented times.

Please continue to show compassion and grace for others in our great community of Coupeville.

I am saddened by the negative impacts that this decision has on so many people, but I am passionate and continue to be optimistic that we will eventually refill our classrooms and hallways with our amazing students when it is safe to do so.

I am certain everyone has many questions regarding the above plan; please keep an eye out for more information in the days ahead.

Please stay safe, healthy and take care,

Steve King


Read Full Post »

A simple purchase can help a community.

Swing by the Kingfisher Bookstore today, while wearing a face mask and practicing strong social distancing skills, and help Coupeville Schools build a diverse, inclusive library of books.

But first, pop back up to the photo above to get all the info on the project.

Read Full Post »

   Coupeville Schools Superintendent Dr. Jim Shank is leaving Whidbey after five years. He’s accepted a new position in Idaho. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

   The dapper doctor entertains CHS Principal Duane Baumann (left) and Athletic Director Willie Smith.

Dr. Shank and daughter Ashlie hang out at a game.

Elvis is leaving the building.

Dr. Jim Shank, the pride of Wolf Nation, is leaving the Coupeville School District.

The best Superintendent this cow town has seen in my memory is moving on and moving up, leaving Whidbey for Burley, Idaho.

The Cassia County School Board, which is replacing retiring Superintendent Gaylen Smyer, officially offered Dr. Shank the position Monday at a board meeting.

After being selected from a field of three finalists, Shank will start his new position July 1.

His departure will also cost the Wolves an athlete, as youngest daughter Ashlie, a basketball and track star, is currently a junior.

Dr. Shank has been the head honcho in Coupeville for five years, during which time he has been front and center as the district has made numerous improvements.

Just from a sports standpoint, his tenure has produced a laundry list of great new additions.

A new track oval and facilities, new bleachers in the gym, a new stadium at Mickey Clark Field, and that’s just the start.

The dapper Dr. Shank always found time to make an appearance at nearly every sports event played at Coupeville High School, and, while there, was willing to take time to talk to anyone with concerns or questions.

On a personal note, he was hugely instrumental in helping my push to create and install the Wall of Fame in the CHS gym.

If you’re expecting an impartial story here, I’m sure the News-Times will have one soon.

I, on the other hand, am a devoted Shankaholic, and hope people realize how much he has done for this town, and these schools.

The man worked his rear off, knew when to glad-hand and when to stand firm, and will leave our schools in far better condition than he found them in.

Cassia County is getting a great Superintendent and a better man.

With that comes wife Sallie, and their family, who were all great additions to our community.

Three of their six children – Matt, Brian and Ashlie –  attended Coupeville schools, and all were athletes who delivered big moments while also shining as students and people.

If I had to choose one word for the Shanks, it is this – class.

They will all be missed, and I, like many others, wish Dr. Shank and his family all the best as they tackle new adventures.


To see the official word from Cassia Schools, pop over to: 


Read Full Post »

Older Posts »