Message from Mary – August 20, 2021
Welcome back for School Year 2021-22! We are excited to see you as we return for professional development and training in the coming days. I hope everyone had time to reconnect with your family and friends, while recharging your batteries. I know that I very much enjoyed the time away to refresh and renew after such a challenging year. I was able to go to Washington DC for a conference (selfie pic included below) and then spent time on a family camping trip and found some pool time to just relax and “be”! Taking care of emotional and mental health has become more important than ever and we must keep this as a priority as we start our school year.
As I begin my 4th year as your superintendent (time flies, right?), I continue to be thankful for this wonderful school district, this community, and all of you! Together, we are seeing the Washougal School District RISE! And although we have been through some big challenges, we have continued to exhibit our care and love for our students. As our 3000 students are preparing to return full time and in-person, I know they will be greeted with your smiles, energy, knowledge, and hope for their futures.
As I write this letter, I want you to be aware of our current reality as it relates to masking and vaccinations. Governor Jay Inslee is legally requiring universal masking for all staff and students and, just this week, announced a new directive legally requiring all K-12 school district employees to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 by October 18, 2021. We do not have local control over either of these directives, but are hopeful that these safety measures will keep all of us safe and keep our schools open for our students. With Governor Inslee’s vaccine mandate, there are potential options for school district employees who cannot be vaccinated due to disability-related reasons or employees who choose not to get vaccinated because of a sincerely held religious belief. We will be communicating out to all staff when we have any updated information from the Governor regarding this process.
Again, we are excited and thankful that all of our students will be attending full time and in-person this school year! I hope you have a lovely weekend and we will see you next week!