January 29, 2015

First Things First ...
NOSCHOOL TOMORROW, FRIDAY, JAN. 30 (day between semesters)!


Upcoming Events ...

    • Thurs., 1/29 Last Day of 1st semester and 2nd quarter
    • Friday, 1/30 NOSCHOOL - Day between semesters
    • Thurs., 2/5 Annual Music-a-thon
    • Fri., 2/6 Lockdown drill, 1st period
    • Fri., 2/6 First Friday Get-Together after school
    • Mon., 2/9 Symphonic Bands: UWPNW Band Festival (all day)
    • Thurs., 2/11 FOMAHI Board Meeting
    • Wed., 2/11 PTSABoard Meeting
    • Mon. 2/16 Midwinter break -- NOSCHOOL
    • Tue., 2/17 Midwinter break -- NOSCHOOL

Please check the calendar on the HIMS website for a complete listing of events.

Daily Schedule/Bell times
Main Office: 252-5810 / Attendance: 252-5814
Hamilton Happenings



Prior to the general membership meeting on January 21, the Hamilton PTSA Board met with Jon Halfaker, who is the Executive Director of Schools for the Northwest Region. Mr. Halfaker (who previously acted as principal at Washington Middle School for nine years) will lead the search this spring for a principal to replace Cindy Watters at Hamilton in 2015-16.

In order to learn more about the specific needs of the Hamilton community and the qualities that our community feels is important in a leader, the District will be offer an online survey in early February. Hamilton staff will be asked to participate in a similar survey.

SPS is currently accepting applications for principal and assistant principal positions across the district, and is simultaneously conducting an initial screening of those candidates. Effective March 1, applicants in the pool will be permitted to apply for specific building positions, and School Interview Committees will have the opportunity to interview interested candidates.

Hamilton's School Interview Committee will consist of six Hamilton staff members and four community/parent members, and will be led by Mr. Halfaker. The Interview Committee is expected to interview a series of candidates on Saturdays and/or Sundays at the John Stanford Center in late March, and will submit a slate of preferred candidates to Mr. Halfaker, who will then provide that information to Superintendent Larry Nyland and Deputy Superintendent Charles Wright. Based on information provided by the school and on their own evaluations, it is expected that the Superintendent will make an offer of an employment and that a placement will be made before May 1. There is a good deal of energy around this process, and we look forward to meeting some great candidates!


The 2015 Legislative Session is underway and it promises to be a crucial year for education funding.

Background: In 2012, the State Supreme Court ruled in the McCleary decision that the Legislature was failing to meet its “paramount duty” to fully fund education. At that time, the Court ruled that the Legislature must make substantial progress each year in order to reach a 2018 deadline for full funding.

While the Legislature has made some incremental progress over the past two years to fully fund education, it has been slow and piecemeal. It has also lacked a comprehensive funding solution that does not hurt other areas of the budget, by requiring cuts to healthcare, housing, and other things that kids need to be successful in school.

This means that funding for education funding is the major focus of the 2015 Legislative Session.

Governor Inslee has already submitted his proposed budget, which includes $2.3 billion in new investments for education. You can read more here.

The House and Senate will also release budgets over the coming months, and then need to agree on a final budget for the state over the next two years (2015-2017). The regular Legislative Session is scheduled to run through April, although the magnitude of the issues before them could require additional special sessions that may run into June.

Make your voice heard! Contact your elected officials to share your opinion on education funding and other priorities that kids need to be successful.

The Washington State Legislative Hotline will allow you to get messages to your representatives, senator, and the Governor’s office. 1.800.562.6000
Check out the Washington State Legislature’s website to learn more.
We will keep you posted as bills and budgets progress over the next few months. If you have any questions, please contact Tara Lee, PTA Legislative Liaison: metaralee925@gmail.com or 206-851-4452 (cell)


Please mark your calendars for another important event. On Tuesday, March 3, Lisa Davidson from SPS will join us here at Hamilton for an engaging and informative evening focusing on the role of adults in preventing adolescent substance use. This parent education night is for adults only, but childcare can be provided.

For more information contact Luke Sworts, Neighborcare Therapist: (206) 940-2582.



With the arrival of spring, our PTSA organization must start to plan for the next academic year, 2015-16.In addition to working with the District to support a principal search for this spring, we will create committees to review this fiscal year's financial business and to workshop a budget for the 2015-16 year.If you would be interested in working on either of these committees, please contact Barbara Vaughey, our PTSA Treasurer, at bvaughey@gmail.com.

We will also form a Nominating Committee to help identify people who might be interesting in working more closely with the Board next year, either to staff Board positions, or to manage or co-manage individual HIMS PTSA events or efforts.If you think you would beinterestedin working with our Nominating Committee, or if you would like totalk to a Board member about any of the Board positions or events, please contactHamiltonPTSA@live.comfor more information.


For the safety of all (and to be good neighbors), please follow these guidelines when picking up and dropping off students on the snug streets surrounding HIMS (here is a map for your reference)

• Drive EAST to WEST on N. 41st Street.
• DO NOT drive on the blocks of Densmore and Woodlawn Avenues that run along the east and west sides of HIMS. These blocks are narrow and are reserved for school buses only.
• Keep conversations with your students brief during drop off/pick up to keep traffic flowing.
• DO NOT stop in the middle of the street to drop off/pick up students. It's dangerous and blocks traffic.

HIMSStudent/Family Directory

If you have discovered erroneous information in the PTSA Family Directory, please be sure to contact Hamilton dad Hal Mullis at halvira@comcast.net. Hal will be collecting comments and will post a revised edition of each of the directories in January.

New Semester Schedule Issues

Once the new semester starts, if your child's schedule needs to be adjusted because of an incorrect placement, or if you would like to request a change, please have your student fill out a pink Change of Schedule request form and submit.

A new schedule will be delivered to them once it has been processed. Please have them attend the schedule they have been assigned until the change has been implemented. Forms are located in the front office, Rm 105C and the counseling department.Email will be answered as time allows.

Elizabeth Peila


Class of 2019 High School Info Session and Tour information is available

This month our 8th grade students will begin to focus on the transition to high school. SPS high schools offer information nights for parents and students in late January and early February. Registration for high school classes will follow in April/May. The counseling department will be working with students to make sure they have the information needed prior to registration.

Counselors are teaching two lessons in the 8th grade classrooms. The first lesson(taught last week) was called "High School and Beyond." This lesson focused on preparing students for high school registration and gave students time to preview general high school requirements and post high-school information. The second lesson (taught this week) is a Career Exploration quiz to help students start to connect their interests with future education and job possibilities. Please visit the HIMS website Counseling Center page for more information and resources.

Seattle Public High School Information Nights start this month. Information is now posted on the individual high school websites and is also linked here.

Music (FOMAHI)News

Concert Orchestra and Senior Orchestra:

TODAY, JAN. 29: Senior Jazz attends the Clark College Jazz Festival

Jan. 30: Vocal Jazz attends the Bellevue College Festival

Feb. 5: Annual Music-a-thon at HIMS (all day)!

Feb. 6:
Senior Jazz attends the Bellevue College Festival

Feb. 9:Symphonic bands attend the UW/PNW Band Festival

Feb. 10: FOMAHI Board Meeting, 7 p.m., HIMS Library

1. Music-a-thon
Our annual fundraiser will be held on Thursday, Feb. 5. Get ready for 12 hours of music! DONATION ENVELOPES were sent home last week. Our goal this year is to raise $20,000, which supports trips, workshops, new instruments and sheet music. Great prizes will be drawn, with one entry for each student that returns a completed envelope by Feb. 5. Volunteers needed! Thank you for your support of Hamilton Music.

2. Hamilton's3rd Annual Solo and Ensemble FestivalisSaturday, March 14, from 9 a.m.-4 p.m.The complete entry packet, the solo entry form, and the ensemble entry form are availableHERE.Deadline for registration isFriday, February 6.

3. Keep Music in our school – get involved with FOMAHI!
FOMAHI (the HIMS music booster organization) is seeking new people to come join us in the 2015-15 school year! We will have several roles opening up in the fall semester, and would love to have you join us. Whether it’s baking cookies for a one-time event or joining the board, we need your help! To find out more about what we do, come to our next board meeting at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Feb 10 in the HIMS library. No commitment required – just come by and say hi! For more information, please contact Jacqui Kramer (jacqui@writersbloc.net). See you there!

YMCA HOST (Hawk Out of School Time)



Spring Ultimate Frisbee at HIMS

Registration for Spring Ultimate is now available. Important dates to note are:

Friday, Feb. 20: Registration deadline
Week of March 2: Team placement practices
Week of March 9: Practices begin
March 14-May 16: Saturday games

Follow the link below to register and to find more information:

HIMSBasketball Season is in full swing!
Come out and cheer on our Hawks.

2015 HIMSBasketball Game Schedule
*Scheduling changes may occur; contact team coaches for most up-to-date schedule

The above information was submitted by the HIMS Athletics department. For more information on Athletics, please see the Athletics page of the HIMS website, or contact HIMS House Administrator, Christy Smith at clsmith2@seattleschools.org, or by phone at (206) 252-5852.

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The Hamilton Weekly News is emailed on Thursdays to HIMS parents/guardians at the email address that they used to register for the Source. If you have questions, please contact HamiltonPTSA@live.com. We welcome your feedback! Please submit content for inclusion by Tuesdays at noon. For submission guidelines, click here.
Principal's Letter



This week's letter is brought to you from Assistant Principal Tipton Blish.

Hello Hamilton Families,

This week will mark the halfway point of the school year. I spend a lot of time with 6th grade students, and it seems only a week or so ago when they came streaming in the building for the first time. They are now about to have completed their first semester of middle school. On the other end, our 8th graders are about to start their last. Whoa!

It is frequently our experience that the second half of the year will zip by seemingly even faster and June will be here soon (or was it here on Monday?).

One of the reasons this time will feel compressed is that all of our students—and our staff—are preparing for their first experience with new tests that are designed to measure how well students are meeting Common Core State Standards. Our teachers (and thus our students) have been working with the standards for several years now, and they are well infused into our curriculum and into the assessments you’re seeing in your students’ work. The tests promise a new and different way to measure student learning than what Washington’s former test, the MSP, promised. The test writers have designed more real-world challenges to test student’s ability to do complex thinking, drawing on a variety of skills. For example, a sample math task takes students through planning a field trip--weighing distance, transportation costs, and entrance fees--and finally, writing an argument in favor of one destination over another asks students to justify their argument. Nearly all of this work will happen on computers and require our students to type.

Our teachers have designed lessons and activities to teach and practice these skills, and students will also become familiar with format of the tests by the time spring arrives.

Seattle Schools has put together a web page with much information and many links about the tests that can be found here.

Our 8th graders will take the test first beginning the week of April 27. Seventh graders will start May 4. And 6th graders will start May 11.

A further change is that students’ test scores are scheduled to be available in June. We expect those results to show us in one more way how amazing our students and teachers are.

Go (Sea)Hawks!

Tipton Blish
Vice Principal



Teen Enviro Science College Prep Program
In the Environmental Science & Technology Practicum, a 9-weekend program at Mercer Slough, teens explore environmental science careers through hands-on experiments in the wetlands and our state-of-the-art wetlab. Great for enhancing college applications. Starts Jan. 31. Scholarships available.

Seattle Expanding Your Horizons (SEYH) 2015 Conference
The SEYHconferences offer girls in 6th through 8th grades a day of career exploration in math, science and technology. The SEYH2015 conference will take place on Saturday, March 14, from 8:15 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Seattle University. The cost of the workshop is $15 per girl. Scholarships are available (see registration form). Registration deadline is Feb. 20, or when capacity is reached, whichever comes first!

Shadowing available at Ingraham
Shadow Visits for potential incoming Rams continue untilFebruary 26. We will shadow on Tuesdays, Wednesdays., and Thursdays from7:50 AM - 11:55 a.m. Parents can call to register their student for a shadow visit: 206-252-3888. Mary Smith (Please specify if your student would like to shadow a student planning to pursue IB or in the Highly Capable/IBx program)
Family immersion travel opportunity to Costa Rica
Help your children continue their Spanish journey to proficiency! Each summer, Intercultural Student Experiences (ISE) organizes language immersion travel to Costa Rica for elementary students of Spanish and their parents. The programs include practical application of Spanish along with a family stay, allowing parents to see their students' language skills in action. This is a great opportunity for graduating students to continue taking steps in Spanish! ISE is planning now for summer 2015 travel, and would like to include HIMS students. For more information, visitisemn.org/FamilyImmersionor contact Anca van der Linden atanca@isemn.orgor612-436-8264.

North Seattle Baseball Registration Now Open - Real Baseball. Real Fun.

Kids ages 4-19 can now register for the upcoming 2015 spring baseball season. North Seattle Baseball is the premier competitive baseball league in Seattle’s north end, adopting Pony rules for a game that includes lead offs, and age-appropriate base path and pitching distances. Our practice and game fields are conveniently located in north and northeast Seattle. We also form tournament and all-star teams for kids who want to play further into the summer. We are the only league in the area to offer indoor batting facilities, and there are no confusing boundaries, so families in all of north Seattle/Shoreline can play together. Find out why North Seattle Baseball provides the best baseball experience for your family! Visit our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/NorthSeattleBaseballAssociation
Email questions to
contactnsba@gmail.comor sign up today at:www.NorthSeattleBaseball.org

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