One role of The Dispatch we enjoy the most is sharing the good news of accomplishments by people and organizations. Here’s a quick recap of what we were happy to tell our readers about just in the last couple weeks alone:
• Eatonville High School and three Bethel School District elementary schools – Nelson, Centennial and Evergreen – were named Schools of Distinction for 2013 by the Center for Educational Effectiveness (CEE), the Association of Educational Service Districts, the Association of Washington School Principals, Washington Association of School Administrators, and Washington State School Directors Association. This statewide honor, awarded to only 99 schools this year, is coveted by school districts and their communities because it’s based on student achievement in math and reading. And that symbolizes the hard work by educators, administrators and students to continually raise the bar of learning.
• The state Department of Transportation, through contractors hired for the job, wrapped up construction of the retaining wall on State Route 7 near La Grande about two months ahead of schedule. That’s great news for drivers. In addition to worrying less about landslides thanks to the wall catching tumbling rocks and earth, drivers can hopefully have the resulting detours fade into distant memory.
• Fifteen-year-old Emily Randolph, long thought of in her hometown of Eatonville as a singing prodigy, broke onto the national stage by making it through the preliminary rounds of “The Voice,” a popular TV talent show on NBC. Keep shooting for the stars, Emily.
• Graham-Kapowsin High School clinched it first regular-season league football championship, and a week later, Eatonville High captured a league title in girls soccer. Both teams were undefeated. It doesn’t get much better than that, unless there is some post-season tournament success in store, which the Eagles and Cruisers have in mind.
• And Salmon Fest, the first of what the town hopes will be an annual regional festival, played out to large crowds and near-perfect weather in Eatonville with the tremendous support and help of the Nisqually Tribe. The organizers had a good idea and made it happen.
The Dispatch editorials are written by editor Pat Jenkins.