Mill Creek Beacon - Your Hometown News Source

By Dr. Ian Saltzman
Everett Schools Superintendent 

It is about the kids


Last updated 11/6/2020 at 1:17pm

For over a year now, I have been writing a monthly column about things happening in the school district and your local schools. We have been through some challenging and exciting times. Our teachers, staff and board members have worked hard in new, innovative ways. I have reported on student performance, bond measures, remote learning and more. Today, I want to get back to the one thing it is all about – why we do what we do. And that is the students. Everything we do is for the kids and about the kids. We have so many amazing students in our community, I would like to highlight a few of them here today.

Two outstanding students from Silver Firs Elementary (SFE) who worked hard to support their school are Gabriel K. and Hailey B. Gabriel, a kindergartener, raised the most money for the SFE PTA fall fundraiser. Hailey, a fourth grader, had the most sponsors in the Raise Craze Fundraiser. Great job!

Woodside Elementary has a big hero at it too. Kohen L. is a third grader at Woodside and at 7 years old, learned to put his pain into power. He was bullied because of the color of his skin. Instead of being mad, he wanted to forgive the person. He wanted to educate,and then he wanted to end racism. He created the #TeamEndRacism GoFundMe # campaign, raising more than $17,400 to purchase diverse books, markers and colored pencils for every third grade student at Woodside and other schools throughout Western Washington.

Kohen says, “Being different means we have so much MORE to offer each other, ending racism can be as simple as smiling and being nice to everyone.”

Our middle school highlight is Savannah K., an eighth grader at Heatherwood. Savannah currently has two articles featured on the website, “Voice of Gen-Z." Voices of Gen-Z, co-founded by two students in Seattle, is a global platform for Gen-Z'ers to speak on issues of their generation. This diverse, all-inclusive community includes writers, podcasters, social media managers, graphic designers and photographers from 13 different countries. We are proud to see Savannah share her story and, in doing so, teach valuable lessons in diversity and respect.

There is also great work going on at your local high school. The first ever Jackson High School (JHS) drive-thru food drive was a huge success! On Oct. 24, the Mill Creek Food Bank brought a truck to the school parking lot where community members and JHS families could drop off food and toiletries for those in need. They collected over 2,500 pounds of food and toiletries in just under three hours. What incredible support for the community!

And despite the reduced athletic competitions, JHS has four student-athletes who have already signed to participate in college athletics: Mia Chang will swim at UCLA; Sarah Sewell will compete in Track and Field at Central Washington University; Zach Ediger will play baseball for Everett Community College; and Gabriela Franco will be playing soccer for the University of New Mexico.

This is just a taste of the great works your local students accomplish every month. We are proud of them and support the work they do to become better students and citizens. And thank you for supporting them and our district as we continue to focus on student health, safety and academic achievement.

It is truly an honor to serve as your superintendent.

Stay safe and be well.


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