STEM families discuss Jan 16 rally in Olympia to fully fund K-12 education

Have you been seeing Facebook posts about a rally in Olympia on Monday, Jan 16 or read stories about the Gov Jay Inslee’s budget proposal to fully fund K-12 education in the state?  Confused about the levy cliff and the huge cutbacks in staff and services that it will bring to Seattle Public Schools in the 2017/18 school year?

K-STEM’s Advocacy meeting presented several items at the Jan 4 PTA meeting, some of which helped attendees make sense of the issues at hand.  You can download the following presentations/ educational materials

Or print out the postcards below to complete and send to your elected representatives, asking them to fully fund K-12 education across the state

And above all, if your plans allow, consider joining your fellow STEM families that will be traveling to the state capitol in Olympia on Monday, January 16 to encourage the Washington State legislature to fulfill its duty by fully funding education in our state.  Plan to meet in the STEM parking lot at 8:00 am and, from there, families will caravan to the Capitol in Olympia.  Families will meet at Visitor Center parking lot and walk to the steps of the Capitol where the rally will begin at 10:30.

Attendees are encouraged to wear Red, STEM Gear or other Fund Our Schools gear. You may want to pack a lunch and definitely bring water, dress comfortably, walking shoes, etc.

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2017/01/06/jan-16-rally-to-fully-fund-education-in-olympia/


Announcing SteamPUNKed: the 2017 STEM K-8 Auction!

Steam·punk ( ˈstēmˌpəNGk) 


  1. an inspired movement of creativity and imagination with a backdrop of either Victorian England or America’s Wild West at hand – modern technologies are re-imagined and realized as elaborate works of art, fashion, and mechanics;
  2. modern technology – iPads, computers, robotics, air travel – powered by steam and set in the 1800’s; or
  3. a genre of science fiction that typically features steam-powered machinery rather than advanced technology.


  • April 1 from 5:30pm-11pm
  • Hall at Fauntleroy 9131 California Ave SW

Why does STEM have an Auction?

PTA’s support basic education in Washington State. The Louisa Boren STEM K-8 PTA supports both basics (library books, gym equipment, art supplies) and “extras” (Project Based Learning supplies, scholarships for before & after school clubs, technology equipment, PTA events like Back to School Bash, and Pi Day). With your support, our students get the basics AND the extras which is what makes STEM awesome!


Available in 2017.

Volunteer & Dessert Dash

We couldn’t pull this off without volunteers! Help is needed in the days leading up to the auction, for event setup, and during the auction itself. Sign up will be available in 2017.

Upcoming Auction Committee meetings are 7-8pm Uptown Espresso in the Junction Feb 9, March 2, March 16, and March 23.

We need 25 donated desserts to cap off the evening. Don’t like to bake? Purchased desserts are welcome. Each dessert must serve 8-10. To donate a dessert, send us an email.

Sponsorship Opportunities

Sponsorship is another great way to support the auction! Levels range from $100 to $5,000 and include a variety of great benefits. Contact auction@stemk8pta.org for information on becoming a sponsor or in-kind donor.


We are on the lookout for wine donations and color printing services.

Room parents: Feel free to organize (or ask for a parent to organize) a class basket. Pinterest is full of ideas, or contact us for ideas about class gifts – it’s an easy, fun way for classes to contribute to the auction.

Fill out a procurement sheet and return it to us by February 28, 2017. 


Little black dress, anything steampunk, jeans – everything welcome.


Contact auction@stemk8pta.org

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/12/21/announcing-steampunked-the-2017-stem-k-8-auction/


STEM K-8 School Tours and Open House dates

Potential K-5 parents and incoming middle-school parents, please click on your preferred date to sign up for STEM K-8 elementary and middle school tours today.

Tours for the elementary portion of STEM K-8 are :

Tours for the middle-school portion of STEM K-8 are : 

The STEM K-8’s Open House, where attendees can learn more about the elementary and middle-school programs, will be held on Thursday, Feb 9.   Hours for each are as follows:

  • Elementary 6:00 –7:00pm
  • Middle School 7:30-8:30pm

Questions? Please contact the STEM K-8 front desk or tours@stemk8pta.org

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/12/16/school-tours-and-open-house/


PBL night to begin at 6pm (Thurs., Dec 8)

The weather forcasts are saying that light snow may begin at 7-8 PM tonight, with heavier snow possible late evening from 9-11.  It is expected to turn to rain and not affect school schedules tomorrow. In consideration of the forecast, we will operate PBL Extravaganza 30 minutes earlier from 6:00-7:30 pm

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/12/08/pbl-night-to-begin-at-6pm-thurs-dec-8/


You’re Invited to Shrek!

Join us for the Sing Out Seattle Production ofshrek musical

Shrek! the Musical 

December 5th at 6:30 pm

K8 STEM Elementary Cafeteria

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/12/02/youre-invited-to-shrek/


Book Fair Blizzard


Blizzard Polar Bear

All purchases benefit the STEM K-8 Library

Bring the Whole Family!

Wednesday, December 7th 3:00pm – 6:00pm

Thursday, December 8th 8:30am – 10:00am & 5:30pm – 8:30pm

Book Fair is also online
(Dec. 5th through Dec. 18th)
Here you’ll find a bigger selection of books (from preschool to adult). You can also send wish-lists and e-cards to family and friends.

Book Fairs App Makes Finding the Right Book a Snap!
The Scholastic Book Fairs app is free and available for both iPhone and Android. With any scan of a book cover or barcode these details are displayed:

• Reading levels (AR, Lexile, DRA and Guided Reading)BOOK FAIR
• Appropriate age and grade
• Book summary
• Price
• Videos and podcasts
• Awards
• eBooks
• Reading Counts quiz indicated

Search thousands of titles to find recommendations on similar books, create wish-lists, and purchase books online.

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/11/15/book-fair-blizzard/


All for Books!

71006_afb_logoMonday November 28th is the start of our week-long All for Books campaign. We’re raising money to purchase books for classroom libraries during our Book Fair Blizzard (December 7th & 8th). All donations go towards buying books for your child’s classroom. The money we raise also helps readers beyond our school. Every year, Scholastic matches the All for Books money raised nationwide with a donation of up to one million books to the Kids in Need Foundation and Kids in Distressed Situations, Inc.

Monday November 28th – Penny Day

Tuesday November 29th – Nickel Day

Wednesday November 30th – Dime Day

Thursday December 1st – Quarter Day

Friday December 2nd – Dollar Day (coins or bills)

Of course, spare change will be accepted on any of the above days!

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/11/14/all-for-books-2/


We hit our goal! Thank you!

2016 Direct Give thank youThank you STEM K-8 community for making the Direct Give Fundraiser a huge success!

Our final total is $36,566!  Every $5, every $100, every $1000 donation adds up and your contribution is very appreciated!
Tax letters will be sent to the address on file by Dec 31.
If you still want to make a donation the PTA will always accept your financial support. Check with your employer if they do matching gifts (Amazon, Nordstrom, Microsoft, Boeing, F5 Networks, and Google–to name a few–all do!). Contact president@stemk8pta.org for more information.
Next up – The STEM K-8 AUCTION is April 1, 2017!  Save the date. It’s going to be a hoot.
Much appreciation for your support.
Robin Graham – STEM K-8 Fundraising Chair

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/11/13/we-hit-our-goal-thank-you/


Movie Night this Friday!

STEM Family Movie Night, November 18!movie-night-210x300

You are invited to Movie Night at STEM! Come to the school cafeteria from 7 – 9pm for movie, concessions, and community fun!

Bring a chair or blanket for seating and money for our Bake Sale! All donations, concessions, and bake sale proceeds support our 4th and 5th graders in overnight PBL field trips – including next year’s Islandwood trip for current 4th graders. This is a family event, students may not be dropped off unsupervised.

Interested in helping set up and take down the event? Register here.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/11/13/movie-night-this-friday/


Chinook Books for Sale!

What is Chinook Book?2017 Chinook Book

Chinook Book is a print coupon book and mobile app featuring hundreds of green businesses near you. Enjoy discounts at the best grocery stores, restaurants, bike shops, plant nurseries, theaters, consignment shops, and more.

The STEM K8 PTA sells Chinook Book to raise funds in support of our families and classrooms. We will be selling books from Thursday, November 4–Thursday, December 11.

How can I get one and how much will it cost?

The books are $20, the apps are $15, and the combo packs (book + app) are $30.  The STEM K8 PTA gets to keep 50% of each sale! Order one for your family here.

Is this open to families outside of STEM K8?

Absolutely!  You can help sell Chinook Books by

  • E-mailing your family, friends, neighbors and/or coworkers
  • Talking about it on Facebook, Twitter, or other social networking sites.

Once you have a count of all the books and apps needed, submit your order here.  Books/apps will then be sent home with students.

I’d prefer to pay with cash or check.

No problem! Order forms for Chinook Book/app have been sent home and can be returned to your child’s teacher or the main office with a payment. Please make checks payable to: K8 STEM PTA.  Books/apps will then be sent home with students.

Will I Really Save Money?

You bet! This includes savings with vendors located throughout Puget Sound, including West Seattle, White Center, and Burien. Vendors include

  • PCC Natural Markets
  • UwajimayaChinook Book Merchants
  • Bartell Drugs
  • Elliott Bay Brewing Co.
  • Grocery Outlet
  • Easy Street Records
  • Pet Pros
  • Meeples Games
  • Goodwill
  • SkyMania Trampolines
  • StoryBook Theater, SAM, The Burke, The Museum of Flight, Port Defiance Zoo & Aquarium
  • and more!


Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/11/03/chinook-books-for-sale/


New bell times for 2017? Let us know what you think!

Seattle Public Schools put a new 3 tiered start and end time bell schedule into effect for this, the 2016/17 school year. Despite their efforts to gather community input and assign schools into the tiers accordingly, some schools ended up with different bell times than what they had requested. The Louisa Boren STEM K-8 community was polled last year and was found to prefer earlier start times over the later, third tier we were assigned.

Seattle Public Schools will enact further changes for the 2017/18 school year as a result of many factors including transportation costs, community feedback and professional development time. Many schools will add an additional 20 minutes daily. Although our school added the twenty minutes into our day this year, we may still be impacted by some of the proposed changes.

Many options are currently on the table for a school board vote. One proposed idea would eliminate the third tier and move all of the district’s K-8’s into the second tier. Another proposal could shift our school day earlier or later resulting in an earlier or later dismissal.

Seattle Public Schools surveyed families in October about these proposed changes. They are very interested in hearing our feedback before the school board makes their final decision in mid November or early December.

The Louisa Boren STEM K-8 would like to advocate on behalf of our community and our preferences for bell times next year. Please make your voice heard by responding to our survey.


Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/11/02/new-bell-times-for-2017-let-us-know-what-you-think/



Even the smallest donations make a really big difference for students at our school. The PTA provides essential funding to our STEM K-8 community and it supports all the “extras.”

How can you help every student at STEM K-8?direct-give

  • $5 buys 1 polo shirt for the uniform closet for a student in need.
  • $10 pays for a scholarship for a student to attend a field trip.
  • $20 buys art supplies for a classroom project.
  • $25 buys 2 books for school library about women of color in technology.
  • $50 buys 4 safety vests for safety team.
  • $65 buys two Singapore Math textbooks.
  • $80 pays for pumpkins used for games at the Harvest Festival and engineering supplies for the Pumpkin Chunkin.
  • 10 payments of $10 dollars buys the jump ropes, hula hoops and balls that students play with at recess.
  • $100 pays for a scholarship for a student to participate in Sing Out Seattle through our enrichment program.
  • $150 buys 1 emergency backpack for a classroom.
  • $200 pays for an owl expert to bring a real owl to school for a Project Based Learning classroom project.
  • 100 donations of $50 pays for 50% of our Project Based Learning specialist who support our teachers projects and builds community connections.

Give. Grow. Fly.


Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/11/01/direct-give-campaign-extended-one-week/


Black Lives Matter Day of Action, Wednesday, Oct. 19

In the first action of its kind in the country,  hundreds of teachers, counselor, instructional assistants, office staff, and other educators, will wear “Black Lives Matter” shirts to school on Wednesday, October 19th.  Organized by educators, this event lets our children and community members know that Black Lives Matter in Seattle Public Schools.

History: This action was sparked by incidents that happened recently at John Muir elementary school.  In September, the school had planned an event titled, Black Men Uniting to Change the Narrative, during which ac-blm-day-of-actionmore than 100 black men had planned to gather outside and greet John Muir students as they walked into the building. The goal of the event was to offer positive stereotypes about black men to the student body, a group which is almost 50% African American. Several local news outlets published stories about this planned event, which were then picked up by conservative news outlets. The building and district subsequently received threats, and the event was officially canceled by SPS, though a small group of teachers and community members held a smaller event.

Moving Forward: In support of SPS’s initiative to Close the Gap in equity, Seattle educators and community members have planned a counter event to ensure that these type of threats are not tolerated in our community. Hundreds of Seattle educators plan to wear Black Lives Matter shirts at school on Wednesday, October 19, and the day will culminate in an evening rally at Washington Hall (153 14th Avenue Seattle, Washington 98122) from 6:00-8:00 pm. STEM families and students are encouraged to wear their own Black Lives Matter shirts (or create one) and to join other families at the evening rally.


Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/10/15/black-lives-matter-day-of-action-wednesday-oct-19/


The STEM K-8 2016 Direct Give Campaign

Give. Grow. Fly.direct-give

Welcome to the annual STEM K-8 Direct Give Campaign, our first fundraiser of the year. During October we aim raise $35,000 to support STEM learning.

Our kids are always pushing to go higher, to see more. That is why we choose STEM. We want them to climb higher and do more than they could anywhere else.

The STEM K-8 PTA serves as the roots of the STEM community and supports funding for every aspect of our unique school. State and local funding is terribly inadequate to support the vision of our school and provide the level of services, support, and materials we need for all of our students.

With the support of families and local businesses, STEM K-8 PTA has enriched the baseline curriculum by investing in technology, art, literacy, engineering, Project Based Learning, playground equipment, science fair projects, scholarships, emergency equipment, teacher training, field trips, and community events. It’s only with your financial support that STEM  K-8 PTA can continue to create opportunities for every student.

Our goal is $35,000.

The Direct Give Campaign ensures that each dollar you donate goes directly to the school. Each donation is tax deductible, and many employers will match donations, increasing your gift to our school and community.

The PTA invites everyone in our community (including friends, neighbors and relatives) to give what they can today. Every dollar makes a difference.

Help us climb higher on the tree.

To Donate: 

Thank you for supporting Louisa Boren STEM K-8.

Give. Grow. Fly.

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/10/01/13113/


Free Showing of “Screenagers, Growing up in the Digital Age” (Oct. 5)

screenagers_fb_coverphotoAre you puzzled about how to handle kids and electronic distractions? The movie  SCREENAGERS probes into the vulnerable corners of family life and depicts messy struggles over social media, video games, and internet addiction. Through surprising insights from authors and brain scientists solutions emerge on how we can empower kids to best navigate the digital world.

The PTA will be showing Screenagers on Wednesday, October 5 at 6:30 pm in the lunch room, followed by discussion groups moderated by STEM school counselor Meredith Osborne.  Children 10 and over are welcomed to attend with an adult family member.  There will be childcare for children ages 5–9.

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/09/22/screenagers-coming-to-stem-on-wednesday-oct-5/


Several before and afterschool classes are closed to registration

Thanks to the enthusiastic response to the slate of fall enrichment classes, there are several that are at capacity and are no longer taking registrations.  This includes Wednesday morning Carpentry, Robotic Arts, Spanish, Advanced Robotics VEX IQ, Drumming (K-5), and Trendy Crafts. 

There are still many fantastic classes to choose from including Circus Arts, Life Skills, Bridge, Futsal, and many more. Registration for all classes closes on Tuesday, September 27.

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/09/21/several-before-and-afterschool-classes-are-closed-to-registration/


Volunteers Needed Tuesday to for Last Minute Prep/Clean Up!

The school is looking for volunteers on Tuesday (9/6) and during the first week of school.  Duties include classroom and overall school help with clean-up and organizing. All of the moving and improving has taken a toll and our hallways and our classrooms could use some extra hands. In addition we could use some help in the first couple weeks of school to make sure kids get where they need to go and help everything go more smoothly. Please sign up on the dates/times that you can lend a hand.

Remember that to volunteer at school and in classrooms you need to fill out the Seattle Public Schools volunteer paperwork each year. Access it at the Seattle Public Schools website.

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/09/04/volunteers-needed-tuesday-to-for-last-minute-prepclean-up/


Latest update from Principal Ostrom

In his 9/3/16 letter, Mr. Ostrom talks about STEM staff, the September schedule and more.

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/09/04/latest-update-from-principal-ostrom/


Principal Ostrom Updates STEM Families

Yesterday, Principal Ostrom has sent out a comprehensive letter to STEM families covering topics like school supplies, orientation, class assignments, onsite childcare and more.  Read the full letter HERE.

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/08/26/principal-ostrom-updates-stem-families/


Help Needed for Parking Lot Painting Party!

Who: Louisa Boren STEM K-8parking-lot-910075_960_720 community and any community member willing to help!

When: August 27th 9am-1pm (drop in as you can!) but rain cancels event

Why: Safety!

What to bring: Wear old clothing! PTA / SPS will provide painting supplies, water, coffee and donuts. Kids more than welcome with parent supervision.

Need more info? contact Robin Graham: robingraham26@gmail.com or 206-841-2901


Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/08/14/help-needed-for-parking-lot-painting-party/


Need a rewarding job? PTA seeks a paid Volunteer Coordinator

Are you a K-8 STEM supporter with good people and organizational skills?  Why not put those to work and become the new PTA Volunteer Coordinator?

For the 2016-17 school year, the PTA Board and the general membership allocated some budget support for a Volunteer Coordinator stipend. Because there are many working parents involved in the PTA and at school, the PTA is seeking a “chief of staff” who can provide occasional on-site support, find and coordinate volunteers, and support PTA-related events with top-notch organizational planning and coordination.


  • Be the lead coordinator and owner of the calendar of events and school activities. Ensure that events and projects have a lead (in many cases finding and assigning the lead) and help to provide whatever resources needed to put on a successful event.
  • Manage a running sign-up genius for all volunteer needs and ensure it is regularly updated, specific, and posted to Owl Post each week.
  • Be on hand at school to help with distribution of materials to classrooms, managing checks and payments that come to the PTA at school, and completing required paperwork.
  • Support before and after school enrichment classes as needed
  • Support community events, as needed, to ensure they run smoothly.
  • Support other, on-site school activities as needed such as fundraising events, field days, or PBL nights.
  • Manage the PTA room by purchasing supplies and helping with processes and organization.

The Volunteer Coordinator will also serve on the PTA board for one year – to be continued at the discretion of the PTA Board and the executive team.

STIPEND: Approx. $7,000 over the course of the school year and paid through the school.

TO APPLY: Contact PTA President Rebecca Garcia at president@stemk8pta.org.

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/08/09/need-a-rewarding-job-pta-seeking-a-paid-volunteer-coordinator/


Kindergarten Play Dates!


Come meet other incoming kindergarten families!

August 18 & 25

4:30pm – 5:30pm

Louisa Boren STEM K-8 playground.

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/07/12/kindergarten-play-dates/


Calling All Owls! It’s the Annual Back to School Bash!

5th Annual Back to School Bash!

WHEN: Friday, September 9, 5:30pm – 8pmowl.picnic

WHERE: Lincoln Park SOUTH END Shelter 1 & picnic tables 1-13. Park on the street (watch out to not park in a restricted ferry line) or in the SOUTH END parking lot. Walk in to the “zip line” playground.

WHAT: Food, friends and fun!

To SARE: Please bring a potluck food to share, plates, and utensils for just your family. STEM PTA will be providing hotdogs, veggie dogs, buns & condiments, water & lemonade. Feel free to bring playthings to share (footballs, chalk, soccer balls, bubbles, jump ropes).

Volunteers would be much appreciated for BBQ duty and cleanup crew.

More info? Want to volunteer? Contact: robingraham26@gmail.com

Rain or shine – thunderstorms cancel.

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/07/12/back-to-school-bash/


Fun week planned for June 20-24

Celebrate the end of the 2015-16 school year with crazy dress options from June 20-24:

Monday: OUT OF THIS WORLD DAY. Dress as your favorite space/science fiction character: Androids, Bug Eyed Monsters, Dr. Who, Aliens, Wall-e, Star Wars, Star Trek, astronauts, Guardians of the Galaxy, etc. Who will you come as?

Tuesday: MISMATCH/TACKY DAY. Mix and match weird patterns, plaid, polka-dots, prints or stripes. Will it be a plaid shirt and paisley pants or a polka dress and patterned top? You decide!

Wednesday: CULTURE/OWL DAY. Celebrate your cultural heritage and wear clothing that has something to do with your family traditions. Another option is to wear owl gear, including spirit wear!

Thursday: CRAZY HAT/HAIR DAY. Wear a uniform but pair it with a silly hat or hairdo. Go crazy from the neck up! Today is the All School Field Trip to Lincoln Park!

Friday: FREE DRESS DAY. Wear whatever you want, uniform or not!

Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/06/17/fun-week-planned-for-june-20-24/


Volunteer Appreciation Planned for 6/22

Calling all STEM volunteers!

To thank all volunteers for their support, STEM staff will be hosting a Volunteer Appreciation Celebration on Wednesday, June 22nd  from 3:40pm – 4:15 pm in the STEM library.   Enjoy light refreshments and celebrate a successful school year with fellow owl families! Playground supervision will be provided so that parents and caregivers can enjoy the party kid-free.



Permanent link to this article: http://stemk8pta.org/2016/06/13/volunteer-appreciation-planned-for-622/

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