A news blog for Seattle's Phinney Ridge and Greenwood neighborhoods


Final meeting on public input for Viewlands Elementary playground improvements is March 2

February 18th, 2015 by Doree

Viewlands Elementary, 10525 3rd Ave. NW, is hosting its final public meeting about its playground improvement project on March 2nd.

Viewlands was awarded a grant from the City of Seattle Department of Neighborhoods to prepare construction documents for the first phase of improvements to the playground. Previous meetings sought input from students and community members about what they’d like to see in the improved playground.

This final public meeting is from 6:30-8 p.m. on Monday, March 2, to review the design documents that are currently 50 percent completed.

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Public Review of first phase of Viewlands playground improvement Nov. 2

October 28th, 2014 by Doree

The public is invited to review the first phase of playground improvements proposed for Viewlands Elementary School, 10525 3rd Ave. NW., from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 2, in the school gym. This is the first of two public meetings.

The playground improvements are being paid for by a grant from the City of Seattle Department of Neighborhoods.

Meeting participants can tour the school grounds and learn where future recreational and play components will be located. Snacks and games will be provided.

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Viewlands Elementary meeting to discuss improvements to school grounds

November 12th, 2013 by Doree

Viewlands Elementary is holding its second public meeting to decide how to improve the school’s grounds with a City of Seattle Department of Neighborhoods grant. Plans include better parking, new playground, and better connections to nearby Carkeek Park.

The meeting is from 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 19, at the school. Light refreshments will be served.

The school website has drawings of three proposed options: Option A, Option B and Option C.

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Greenwood, Viewlands elementaries will now offer free full-day kindergarten

November 1st, 2013 by Doree

Seattle Public Schools announced today that it will add free all-day kindergarten at 16 more elementary schools, including Greenwood and Viewlands. That means 43 out of the city’s 69 elementary schools will now provide free all-day kindergarten to all students, instead of charging for half a day for students who don’t qualify for free and reduced price lunch.

And, if the School Board approves it at its Nov. 20 meeting, the district also will reduce the monthly amount for those still paying for the extra half-day from $311 to $283, retroactive to Sept. 1.

If approved by the Board, families who use automatic withdrawal will have their money credited back to their bank accounts by Jan. 31; those who paid by credit card will receive a refund check by Jan 31.

According to a school district press release, the money comes from a change in how the District can use $2.4 million from the state’s Learning Assistance Program.

“We know that early learning is key to our students’ success, and attending full-day kindergarten helps prepare our students academically and socially for the rest of their school career,” Cashel Toner, Director of Early Learning for Seattle Public Schools, said in the press release. “This proposal means that an additional 770 students can take advantage of full-day kindergarten at no cost.”

The state currently funds full-day kindergarten for schools that are at 50 percent population of students who qualify for free and reduced price lunch, including Broadview-Thomson K-8, just north of Greenwood. The district will now offer it to all schools with 25 percent free and reduced price lunch. The state legislature has said it plans to fully fund all-day kindergarten in all schools by 2017.

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City to fund two Greenwood sidewalk projects

September 20th, 2013 by Doree

The City of Seattle has approved two neighborhood projects that were requested by citizens to make walking safer.

Bridging the Gap funds of $1,070,000 will be used to build sidewalks on Greenwood Avenue North between North 92nd and North 97th streets, and from North 104 to North 105th streets.

School zone camera revenue of $505,000 will be used to build a sidewalk on the west side of 3rd Avenue NW between NW 105th and NW 107th streets, by Viewlands Elementary School.

The projects should be designed in 2014 and constructed in 2015. You can the full list of 16 city-wide projects here.

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Reminder: Children in need can still receive free lunch and snacks at several sites this summer

August 21st, 2013 by Doree

Just a reminder that children 18 and younger can get free lunch and sometimes breakfast or snack through the Summer Meals Program.

Two of the three sites in our neighborhood will end their summer meal program this week:

  • Broadview-Thompson Elementary School, 13052 Greenwood Ave. N., serves free breakfast from 8:30-9 a.m. and lunch from 12-12:30 p.m. This Thursday is the last day.
  • Bitter Lake Community Center, 13035 Linden Ave. N., serves lunch from 12-1 p.m. and snack from 3-4 p.m. this Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.

Viewlands Elementary, 10525 3rd Ave. NW, will serve lunch from 12-1 p.m. Monday-Friday through next Friday, Aug. 30.

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Hunger Intervention Program expands Healthy Food Backpacks Program to Viewlands Elementary

February 8th, 2013 by Doree

The Hunger Intervention Program (HIP) provides backpacks full of healthy, kid-friendly foods to 40 North Seattle elementary school children each weekend. Starting on Feb. 22, HIP will expand the program to two more elementary schools, including Viewlands, 10525 3rd Ave. NW.

Viewlands has one of the highest numbers of children in the district relying on free or reduced price school meals.

The Healthy HIP Packs Program is a food backpack program that provides meals for children at risk of hunger when they are out of school. Each Friday, backpacks are discretely filled with enough food for six meals and two snacks per child and include information on nutrition and community resources… (T)he foods included in the pack are complete meals and emphasizes whole grains, milk, high quality proteins, fresh fruits, and products with no added sugars.

“We always welcome donated funds as well as donations of healthy, quality foods that can be included in the HIP Packs,” added Murphy. “If anyone is interested in hosting a food drive, we can provide information to do so. We know that hungry kids can’t learn and this program directly delivers food to where it is needed most.”

Donors have provided HIP with enough money to provide weekend food for up to 20 children at each of the two new schools. HIP hopes to increase that to 40 children at each school every week by the end of the next school year.

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Viewlands Elementary students collecting food for Holiday Food Boxes for students in need

November 3rd, 2012 by Doree

Students at Viewlands Elementary, 10525 3rd Ave. NW, are collecting food in each classroom and partnering with Hunger Intervention Program (HIP) and local businesses to create Holiday Food Boxes for fellow students in need. Participating businesses include Starbucks, QFC, and Lenny’s Produce Market.

The students will pack up the boxes on Nov. 14; the boxes will be distributed to students in need before Thanksgiving.

“The Hunger Intervention Program is pleased to support Viewlands Elementary and hopes to offer weekly food support to students in 2013 through our Healthy HIP Packs program,” Kate Murphy, HIP Program Manager, said in a press release. “The Healthy HIP Packs program provides food when children need it most – on the weekends when the safety net of school meals is not available. The packs provide nutritious and kid-friendly foods sufficient for six meals and two snacks per child.”

According to the press release, one in four Washington children live in households where families are struggling to make ends meet; and Viewlands Elementary has one of the highest free and reduced price school meal participation rates in North Seattle.

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New principals named at two PhinneyWood area elementary schools

May 18th, 2012 by Doree

Seattle Public Schools today announced new principals for two schools with students from the Phinney-Greenwood area.

Melissa Schweitzer is leaving her job as assistant principal at Whitman Middle School to become principal at Whittier Elementary School. Current principal Linda Robinson is retiring at the end of the school year.

Schweitzer has previously been an instructional coach, and a Special Education teacher at Meany Middle School and Seattle Children’s Home.

She holds a Master of Arts in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Colorado and earned a Bachelor of Science in Special Education from the University of Evansville. She has Washington State Administrative Certification.

Ms. Schweitzer was selected after a hiring process that included input from staff and families. The selection team committee was particularly impressed with her strong background in instructional support and leadership for excellence in student learning, as well as her commitment to the vision of the Whittier community.

Michelle Ota is leaving her assistant principal post at Salmon Bay K-8 School in Ballard to become principal at Viewlands Elementary School.

Michelle Ota previously served as professional development coordinator at Meany Middle School, as outreach coordinator for the Puget Sound Writing Project, and as a STAR mentor for Seattle Public Schools. She taught sixth grade language arts and social studies at TOPS, and middle school social studies in the Spectrum program at Washington Middle School.

She holds a Master in Education from Western Washington University and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Washington. She earned a principal certificate from Western Washington University and holds a Washington State Administrative Certification.

Both Schweitzer and Ota begin their new jobs on July 1.

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