Services update

Starting March 16 some SPS schools will be offering lunch services to students. The closest to HPE is Denny MS, but please check out this map if another location may be more convenient for you.

Also, Comcast is offering 2 months of free internet services to waiting applicants, please follow this link to see if you qualify:

Teachers are working on a survey to see what needs there are in order to continue learning over the next six weeks, they will be contacting families soon. Ms. Tapia just posted on Class Dojo that work packets will be available to students at lunch pick up sites starting March 23rd.

We will keep you updated as more resources are made available. Stay strong, Mustangs!

Update: lunches are available to ALL students, from 11 to 1 at each site.

Day 2 of food drive

If you are in need of food we are handing out groceries again today, in the parking lot of Highland Park Elementary. School families AND any neighborhood families are welcome. We will be there until 6:00, please come!

If you would like to donate to the PTA to support the drive you can via PayPal ( or contact us through blog contact info.

More Food Resources

From Principal Dysart:

The governor of Washington State has asked that all schools close until April 24th.  This is to further stop the spread of COVID-19.  Yesterday, you received notice it would be a 2 week closure, so news is changing fast.  I will regularly update you on changes and hopefully, be able to provide helpful information and resources to our school community while everyone is at home, dealing with this unanticipated event.  Please know our staff is still committed to helping in a variety of ways.  In future communications, I will describe more ideas for how to bring learning into the home – staff are working on this problem right now. Also, I will continue to send you ideas for how to seek help or assistance with food, housing, and childcare.  

For food, volunteers served ready to eat meals and groceries for home in our school parking lot today.  They will continue to do so tomorrow, Friday, March 13th, from 8AM – 7PM.  Drop by at any point during these hours. The district is planning to get nutrition service back up and running soon (look for this update in a future message).

There are also local businesses and nonprofits who can help:

West Seattle Food Bank
3419 SW Morgan St.
Seattle, WA 98126
Seniors Only (55 & over):
Tuesdays:  9:00 am – 1:00 pm
General Public:
Wednesdays:  12 noon – 7:00 pm
Thursdays:  9:00 am – 2:00 pm
Fridays:  10:00 am – 2:00 pm

Salvation Army White Center Meal Program
9050 16th Ave SW
Seattle, WA 98106

Available Monday -Fri: 11-11:30am for senior meal program; 1-2pm for Everyone
*registration required: proof of income, verification of family size, proof of address & photo ID

Paradise of Praise Food Bank
1316 SW Holden St
Seattle WA 98106
Open Tuesdays 10am-12pm

White Center Food Bank
10829 8th Ave SW
Seattle, WA 98146
**Serves Residents in community bordered by SW Myrtle St (to the North in West Seattle) to 140th St. SW (To the South in Burien) between Puget Sound and Hwy 509
Appts need to be scheduled first to determine where they can go here:
*Requirements: Photo ID, Official Bill or Mail (dated no older than 60 days)
*Website with general information about hours:

St Vincent De Paul Food Bank
5972 4th Ave S
Seattle, Wa 98108
**Hours: Tuesdays 11am-2pm; Thursdays 11am-2pm; Fridays (homeless only) 11am-2pm; Saturdays 11am-2pm
**other services available

Highline Area Food Bank
18300 4th Ave S
Burien, WA
*Distribution Hours: Tuesdays 12-2:30pm; Thursdays 10-12:30pm; 2nd Tuesday of Month 5:30-7:30pm

Northwest Food Harvest
1915 4th Ave S
Seattle, WA 98134
Hours: Monday 1:30-7:30pm; Wednesday 8am-2pm; Fridays 8am-2pm
Transit: Buses #131 #132
Sound Transit: SODO Station
*No Parking Lot, encouraged to take Public Transit

Rainier Valley Food Bank
4205 Rainier Ave S
Seattle, WA 98118
**Thursdays/Fridays 9am-2pm (Esp. Now with SPS schools closing)
*Wednesdays & Saturdays 9:30am-2pm
**If families are worried about exposure or are immuno-compromised, we are setting up a curbside pick-up system. All they need to do is call this number 206-723-4105, press option 2 and leave us a message. We will pack them a bag and they can come pick it up during a set time. 
*No appointments necessary; No zip code restrictions
*Bring Photo ID (not required, but helpful) & Bring your own bag to carry groceries
*Other accommodations available, check website

Never Again Is Now

An art installation by Erin Shigaki currently at Bellevue College features a giant blow up photograph of two Japanese American children, taken at an Interment Camp, titled Never Again Is Now. Two weeks ago vice president Gail Barge removed a sentence from the placard about Japanese immigrants and their connection to Bellevue: “After decades of anti-Japanese agitation, let by Eastside businessman Miller Freeman and others, the mass incarceration of Japanese Americans included 60 families (300 individuals) who farmed Bellevue.”

The sentence was first whited out, then a laminated copy of the placard with the sentence removed was taped over the original placard.

Barge had previously apologized, but didn’t give any explanations as to why she removed the sentence. Two days ago the college announced the resignation of Barge and Jerry Weber, president of the college. Today that resignation was unanimously accepted by the board of trustees.

Weber did not claim involvement but recognized, “this event happened on my watch… Given the impact of this event, I believe it is in the best interest of the college for me to step down.” (1)

Incredibly, and unreported in the Seattle Times series of stories on this event, this is the SECOND time this sentence has been removed from Erin Shigaki’s work. She describes the first instance in an opinion piece in the International Observer.

She writes, ” The United States’ history of racism should not be erased or modified, just because some find it difficult to come to terms with, or because it names people whose generational wealth and power is entwined with that racism. In fact, it is this constant desire to whitewash the past that dooms us to repeat it. Three generations later, the cruel and thoughtless attempt to silence my art stirs up the same emotions my ancestors felt but were unable to speak of in order to survive their incarceration: sorrow, anger, confusion, mistrust, dismissal, disrespect, shame, and self-hate.”(2)

On Tuesday a ceremony took place to show support for Shigaki whose father was born in an Idaho incarceration camp. She is quoted in the Times, “I was moved by the number of people from my community and Bellevue College students who turned out remembering Japanese-American incarcerees and other victims of detention in a thoughtful way with a powerful show of solidarity.” (1)

Last month the 4th grade classes visited the Central Library and listened to a presentation by Japanese Americans who were interred during WWII. If you haven’t discussed this grim period of American history with your children, this might be a good opportunity to introduce it!

4th graders at Central Library, photo by Danielle Meier
Puyallyp Fair grounds – former site of Camp Harmony, photo by Danielle Meier

Learn more about the Black Lives Matter at School Movement

Here is a really interesting article from the South Seattle Emerald, by Erica Ijeoma:

I watched the debacle at John Muir a couple years ago, sickened but not really surprised at the push back to teachers wanting to wear Black Lives Matter shirts to school. But I had no idea until now that spurred Black Lives Matter at School. This article goes into a lot more depth about it, it’s a great read.

You can learn even more at

Black Lives Matter at School

This week we celebrate Black Lives Matter at School. In this week of action each day is centered around a theme.

Monday – Restorative Justice, Empathy, and Loving Engagement

Tuesday – Diversity and Globalism

Wednesday – Trans-Affirming, Queer Affirming, and Collective Value

Thursday – Intergenerational, Black Families, and Black Villages

Friday – Black Women and Unapologetically Black

This week of action includes several national demands. End zero tolerance, mandate black history and ethnic studies, hire more black teachers, and fund counselors, not cops!

It is always time to talk to your child about race, but this week might be even better. Talk to your child about what they are learning this week!

Also, if you missed the t shirt sale the PTA bought a few extra, please let us know of you would like one for you or your child!

Boon Boona 1 year anniversary!

Rahiel pours freshly roasted Yirgacheffe coffee beans to be ground and then brewed in an earthenware vessel, a jebena, during an Ethiopian coffee ceremony at Boon Boona in Renton on Saturday. Boon Boona — which means coffee, coffee — celebrated its first anniversary with repeated roastings and pours. (Alan Berner / The Seattle Times)

So fun seeing this in the news today! Boon Boona Coffee is run by Highland Park Elementary’s own Fesaha family!

It’s the one year anniversary of the opening of Boon Boona, located in downtown Renton.

Here is the link to the piece in times, check it out!

The unfiltered coffee poured into small cups is strong and smooth, not unlike a shot of espresso. Traditional coffee ceremonies are held in family homes in Ethiopia, where coffee is a 1,000-year-old tradition. (Alan Berner / The Seattle Times)