There was no power at my house on Saturday morning. Something to do with the lines being down and it impacting our immediate neighborhood. The house became surprisingly cold pretty darn fast and I couldn’t make my morning tea, so I grabbed my stuff and went off to Starbucks to warm up and wake up. While waiting for my Americano I perused the bulletin board and noticed an informational flyer for Summit Public Schools that will be opening a ninth grade high school in the fall of 2015 with about 120 students. The school, called Olympus High School, will be adding on a grade each year until it has the more traditional 9th – 12th grade high school configuration. This developing charter school will serve Tacoma’s South End, Eastside and Hilltop communities and provide “a personalized learning experience to each and every student, giving all students the opportunity to achieve their academic goals regardless of their previous preparation and background” (from their website).
So with the news that it was going to take 45 minutes for my hot water heater to be hot again, I jumped in my car and drove off to see this new school at 409 Puyallup Avenue in the Dome District. Oh! I recognize the building across from Alfred’s Cafe and Bull’s Eye Indoor Shooting Range. The building, which is obviously being renovated, was constructed in 1929 for Nalley’s Fine Foods. They sold it in 1953 and since then it has been a Salvation Army Social Center and I seem to remember some kind of sporting goods being sold out of it. It is great to see such a lovely old building being updated.
When I got out of my car to take a photo a man walked up to me and said he’d “been waiting his whole ****ing life”. Ummmm. Thanks? But no worries, he wasn’t talking to me, but only to his invisible friend. I let him get further down the road before I ventured out. I have to say the neighborhood had a host of interesting characters (that’s me being nice). I will be fascinated to see how the school developments.
On Sunday we stopped at the plant sale at Tacoma’s Lincoln Center’s Greenhouse at 3600 South G Street. It was the last day of the sale, but there was still a good selection and we came away with some lovely flowers and a couple of herbs. They money raised goes back into the program.
Lincoln High School at 701 South 37th Street in Tacoma opened its door to students in 1914. The building was named after president Lincoln and a 9′ tall bronze statue of the president was created by Tacoma sculpture Alonzo Victor Lewis and installed in 1918. The Knights of Pythias formed a committee to pay for the statue and coordinated a giant bake sale (2,000 cakes!). The school’s original name was Lincoln Park High School, but the Park was dropped in 1917.
The Lincoln Center is part of Lincoln High School and is defined as a program to “immerse students into academic life, boost their studying skills and social development and prepare them to graduate four years later as college or career-ready. This is done through a program of enrichment and intensive academic support. Students attend school from 7:35-5:00 four days each week with a normal school day on Friday. Students receive approx. 540 additional hours of academic time each year, with summer school and two Saturdays a month adding to their academic workload.” About 25 to 35% of the student enrolled in Lincoln High School are also part of Lincoln Center.
I had a meeting today at Auburn Mountainview High School 28900 124th Ave SE Auburn, WA 98092. It really does have a lovely view of Mr. Rainier. Itis a lovely, newer school that is well maintained. There are 1,450 students.
Wednesday I went to a very crowded meeting at Mt. Tahoma High School at 4634 S. 74th Street, Tacoma. The original building was constructed in 1961. The school, which as named after the Native American name for Mt. Rainier, was substantially remodeled in 2004. The school’s mascot is the Thunderbird. The photo I took Wednesday isn’t very good, so I’m using photos from 2008.
Tacoma Public School has announced that it may close schools in order to save money. Foss is the high school they are considering and elementary schools with less than 300 students are also possibilities. These elementary schools are Franklin, Lyon, Roosevelt, Stanley, McKinley, Wainwright and Geiger. Geiger has had a program change and has been taken off the table.
Today’s school is Foss High School at 2112 S. Tyler. Their mascot is the falcon and the school opened in 1973. Foss is the first school in Washington State and the second school west of the Rocky Mountains to offer the international baccalaureate diploma program, which began in 1982. The school is named after Henry Foss, the son of the founders of the Foss Launch and Tug Company, making it the first school named after a Tacoma native. With the exception of the School of the Arts and the Science and Math Institute, Foss is the smallest Tacoma High School. The Foss website can be found here. http://www0.tacoma.k12.wa.us/schools/hsx/foss/
I was driving around today, taking advantage of a little daylight and a break in the rain when I spotted this building up on the hill. I hadn’t noticed it before, but it looked interesting so I figured out how to get there. Oh! It is Oakland School! I wondered where that was. It is a 8th – 12th grade alternative school for Tacoma students.
Oakland School (3319 S. Adams Street) was built in 1912 by Heath and Gove and qualifies for, but is not yet on, the local register of historic places. The architect was F. H. Heath, who was also the architect for Stadium High School, Lincoln High School, Pythian Temple (all in Tacoma) and Paradise Inn at Mt. Rainier. The architectural style is Jacobean Gothic.
Per Wikipedia, the school served elementary students until 1988, at which time it became an alternative school for high school students. During 2009-10, approximately 250 students attended Oakland. OHS also added a middle school component in the 2009-10 school year.
According to the Washington State Report Card, the school has 235 students, with more boys (58%) than girls. The annual drop out rate is 43%, which is dramatically higher than the 7% figure for the district as a whole. The program at Oakland is designed to meet the needs of students struggling with traditional high school, through an alternative schedule and small school environment.
Wilson High School is one of the five, large traditional high schools in the Tacoma School District. Per the Washington State Office of Superintendent of Public instruction, the school’s ratio of boys to girls is about 50/50 and the student population is 1,345 students. Wilson has a free and reduced lunch rate of 34.1%, which is lower than the district’s rate as a whole of 57%.
I took a quick photo of Titlow Lodge today for my new place of the day. The history of the Lodge, which isn’t now actually used for lodging is pretty interesting. When it was built in 1911 it was called the Hotel Hesperides and had 30 guest rooms. The building’s architect was Frederick H. Heath who also designed Stadium and Lincoln High Schools and the Central School Building. In 1926 the property was purchased by Metro Parks and between 1937 and 1941, the top two floors were removed. The building is now being upgraded and is not open to the public. http://www.metroparkstacoma.org/page.php?id=734