Franklin Pierce Schools

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Six schools recognized as 2013 Washington Achievement Award winners


Six district schools – Brookdale Elementary, Central Avenue Elementary, Christensen Elementary, Elmhurst Elementary, Franklin Pierce High, and Washington High – have been recognized as Washington Achievement Award winners for 2013. A total of 413 schools in the state of Washington were named.


The Washington Achievement Award is sponsored by the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction and the State Board of Education. Award winners are selected using the state’s Accountability Index and the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) Flexibility Waiver.


“It is important that we use the revised Achievement Index to not only provide feedback to schools and districts on their progress, but also to identify schools with exemplary student performance,” said State Board of Education Chair Dr. Kristina Mayer. “These awards shine the light on what is working well in schools across Washington.”


Schools are recognized as top performers in one or more of six categories:


  • Overall Excellence
  • High Progress
  • Reading Growth
  • Math Growth
  • Extended Graduation Rate (awarded to high schools and comprehensive schools only)
  • English Language Acquisition


More information about the award categories and the Washington Achievement Awards can be found at:


The district’s honorees were recognized in the following categories:


Brookdale Elementary: High Progress


Central Avenue Elementary: English Language Acquisition


Christensen Elementary: Reading Growth and Mathematics Growth and English Language Acquisition


Elmhurst Elementary: English Language Acquisition


Franklin Pierce High: High Progress


Washington High: High Progress



Superintendent Hewins was pleased to learn of the announcement. “This is yet another recognition we’ve recently received about our schools from an outside organization that indicates we are on a path of continuous improvement,” said Hewins. “We will always have more work to do, but we should also take time to celebrate the great work by staff and students that earn these prestigious recognitions.”


The award-winning schools will be honored at a ceremony on April 24 at Timberline High School in Lacey.


Washington High students selected as 2014 Washington Scholars


Three graduating Washington High students were recognized by the Washington Student Achievement Council as being among the top students in the 29th Legislative District and the state of Washington. Olivia E. Moore and Jari David Rozo L. Tamayo were selected as 2014 Washington Scholars, and Mariah Sora Strange was selected as an alternate. Annually, only 147 students are selected as Washington Scholars; 49 additional students are selected as alternates.


The 1981 Legislature enacted the Washington Scholars program to honor the accomplishments of three high school seniors, plus one alternate, from each of the state’s 49 legislative districts.


The Washington Scholars award represents the highest academic honor conferred to high school students graduating in the state of Washington. Recognition as a Washington Scholar includes no monetary scholarship benefit at this time.


High school principals nominate the top one percent of their graduating senior classes for Washington Scholars consideration on the basis of academic achievement, leadership, and community service. A 33-member selection committee, comprised of representatives from public and private high schools, state educational agencies, and public and private four-year colleges and universities, then winnows the list.


Congratulations to Olivia, Jari, and Mariah!


Keithley marching band performs in Junior Daffodil Parade

Keithley's marching band performed at the 53rd Annual Junior Daffodil Parade in the Proctor District of Tacoma on Saturday, April 12.




Keithley students visit Washington, D.C. and New York City during Spring Break

During spring break, six 8th grade Keithley Middle School students traveled to Washington, D.C. and New York City. The Keithley group joined two other schools, one from Los Angeles and one from Houston. The purpose of the trip was to expose students to living history, giving them an opportunity to experience the actual locations of stories they’ve read about in American Literature.

The trip began in Washington, D.C. where the students visited the Smithsonian Museums, Capitol Hill, historical memorials, and the White House. The trip ended in New York City where the students visited Ellis Island, the Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, and took in a production on Broadway.

The trip was open to all interested 8th grade students that were in good academic standing and have maintained good behavior at school. Students and parents paid for the trip with a combination of gifts, fundraisers, and out-of-pocket payments. Payment plans were also available. The trip’s advisor, KMS teacher Alicia Mendez, hopes to make this opportunity an annual event.

L to R: Brianna Heaton, Tammy Bigelow, Cayla Bigelow, Zach Grondahl, Cissy Ramoie, Kaitlyn Ramoie, Ariyanna Pyles, Dixie Pyles, Josh Adamson, and Jonathan Bazail.


Students participate in the annual Daffodil Parade, community float wins award


In the days preceding the annual Daffodil Parade on April 5, volunteers were busy decorating the community float and students were busy practicing for their parade performance. Thousands of daffodils secured to the float and hundreds of hours of practice later, both the float and students proudly entered the parade to represent the Franklin Pierce community.

Marching bands from Washington High and Franklin Pierce High donned their new uniforms and performed in the parade. Cheer squads from both schools provided extra spirit to the community's entries. The Junior ROTC squadron marched with precision. The district's two princesses greeted the crowds. And the community's float was as colorful and creative as ever; the float won 2nd place for communities over 20,000.

Congratulations to everyone who participated and supported this year's parade and festival events.






Elementary Honor Choir performs at annual showcase event


On the evening of March 20, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Parkland, 79 elementary students from the district's eight elementary schools came together to show their singing skills to a crowd of parents and community members.

The students sang eight songs. The eight elementary music teachers and a few guests performed one song. In all, the nine songs represented a wide range of music genres and cultural styles, including Japanese, American, Spanish, and South African titles.

The annual event has a history of filling all seats with eager audience members. This year was no exception. The pews of Trinity Lutheran Church were packed.



Secondary school jazz bands put on show at annual District Jazz Night


Jazz bands from Washington High, Franklin Pierce High, Ford Middle, and Keithley Middle each played a set for nearly 200 parents and community members on March 18 at Washington High's theater venue. The bands played a selection of jazz standards; several students performed solos resulting in huge cheers from the audience.

The Supt. Troupe, comprised of district staff, also performed a few titles for the audience. The evening's performance concluded with In The Midnight Hour, School Psychologist Adrian Elmo on vocals.



Ford Middle School Jazz Band.

Supt. Troupe.


200 students participate in We Day


On March 21, nearly 200 students from Franklin Pierce Schools boarded school busses at 6 a.m. to depart for Seattle to participate in a region-wide event called We Day. Making its first U.S. debut in Seattle last year, We Day is a youth-oriented educational event that teaches and encourages students to act locally and globally to make the world a better place.

While We Day doesn’t cost students any money to attend, the tickets are not free. Students must perform volunteer service on a local and global issue in order to earn their way to the event. At the event, they are entertained by pop stars, and taught important lessons by a wide range of humanitarians and celebrities. This year, students got to see and hear from Martin Luther King III, actor/director Edward Norton, Spencer West, Seahawks Coach Pete Carroll, four players of the Seattle Seahawks, Seattle Sounders alum Roger Levesque, Joe Jonas of the Jonas Brothers, and performers Cody Simpson and Flo Rida.

Students from all five secondary schools – Franklin Pierce High, Washington High, GATES High, Keithley Middle, and Ford Middle – attended. A group of 5th grade students from Midland also attended the day-long event.

A story detailing Franklin Pierce students’ local and global actions will be published in the May edition of the VIEWS community newsletter. For more information about We Day, click HERE.

We Day Speaker Platform. 15,000 students attended the event.

Seattle Seahawks Coach Pete Carroll.

Martin Luther King III.

We Day students dancing the official We Day Dance.

Spencer West.

Seattle Seahawks. L to R: Quarterback Russell Wilson, Linebacker Bobby Wagner,

Running Back Derrick Coleman, Receiver Jermaine Kearse, Coach Pete Carroll.


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 Superintendent's Corner

From the early days of our nation, public education has played a vital role in shaping and developing young people to fully participate in our American democratic society. In addition to preparing them for productive work and fulfilling lives, public education has also been expected to accomplish certain collective missions aimed at promoting the common good.
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