Welcome Back

Welcome Back

Welcome everyone to the 2016-2017 School Year!

We are nice people     We communicate well     We work as a team      We keep students First


Dear parents and guardians,

Welcome to a new school year filled with fresh opportunities and great people. I am thrilled to begin my second year as your superintendent. Please take note of the “We” statements at the top of this page. While “we” are not perfect, these statements represent our operating principles, and we will strive to make them true in our interactions each day of the year. Your students are our top priority and the reason we have chosen education as our profession. I hope you will take a moment to read about a few of the updates in the district which are listed below. I am looking forward to a great new year together!

Also, please like us on Facebook (click here) to stay informed about new activities, opportunities and accomplishments throughout the school year.



Eric Nerison


Kalama School District



WHAT’S NEW FOR 2016-2017?


We’re excited to welcome new and returning staff to the District - they are:

·        Leigh Ford and Brenda Jenson: Leigh and Brenda will team up to teach 3rd grade this year.  This team returns with a wealth of experience and a commitment to the success of Kalama students – welcome back!

·        New Special Education staff have joined us in the following roles:

o   MS/HS Special Education Teacher: Josh Reed

o   Elementary Special Education Teachers: Lizzie Sheldon and Holly Von Roch

o   Elementary Paraeducators: Megan Cox, Kelly Bowen, Christi Lange and Jessica Cone

·        Kim Allais has hit the ground running as our new MS/HS Assistant Principal. She’s planning great back to school activities for students and staff, and she has already hosted an “all-nighter lock in” for ASB Leaders – go Kim! She has also represented the Chinooks at trainings and meetings around the region.



Pass the word about parking, buses and visitors. YOU WILL BE AFFECTED, but we will be there to guide the process!

After MANY years and two formal studies of our traffic patterns, we are trying a new approach to improve traffic flow, parking access and student safety. Why now? We have been made aware that our current approach, while functional for us, presents serious safety issues for Kalama students. Stay tuned for a map and a detailed description of the new procedures!

Here are the key points:

·       Students: Park in the upper parking lot at the stadium

·       Elementary Parents: drop off and pick up will occur BEHIND the elementary school by the covered area

·       MS/HS Parents: will now have parking options behind the elementary, in the lower lot next to the MS/HS, and in front of the elementary school EXCEPT during drop off and pick up during bus times.

·       Buses Only: buses will use the front of the elementary school during drop off and pick up. They will exit through the old Senior parking lot.



The year brings with it many new classes and opportunities at Kalama Middle/High School including Introduction to Computer Science, Career Choices and Work Base Learning. Contact Mrs. Delker to learn more!

Robotics will also arrive new to Kalama Elementary (4th/5th), Middle and High School students. Students at all three levels will now have the opportunity to learn science through Robotics and/or compete on a robotics team. Lead teachers for this initiative are Victoria Wells, Chris Stone and Grant Noble.

We are the first school District in Cowlitz County to join the Southwest Washington STEM Learning Network. Students will benefit from increased opportunities for internships, AP preparation and career development, especially in areas related to Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics.



·       The Kalama School District new website (click here) is active and it exists to serve your needs – use the comments section on the main page to give us feedback on the website or ANY question, concern or idea you have. We will review your ideas on a weekly basis!

·       JOIN US! You may discover a new passion! We are happy to have staff re-joining us, but we’re also running low on substitute teachers. At Kalama our subs are truly guest teachers.  Do you have a college degree? Do you enjoy working with youth and children? Please click here to learn more about becoming a substitute - we are always in need!

·       Coming very soon you will be able to pay online for student school fees and update lunch balances. To accomplish this, the district will be piloting “RevTrack” services. While this third party vendor does charge a 3.49% transaction fee, we will continue to accept payment in person if you prefer.


·        Our Long Range Facility Planning Committee has now met four times to evaluate and discuss data; walk through buildings; and generate facility improvement strategies for recommendation to the school board. Click here to learn more about our process so far!

·        To alleviate cafeteria congestion Mr. Strot and the custodial staff have worked hard to create space for MS/HS students to eat lunch within the MS/HS building. As a result there are 140 seats now set up in the senior hall area for this purpose.

·        We have a safer elevator at the stadium. If the elevator has prevented you from attending our games – please join us this year!



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