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Cheney Free Press
Cheney , Washington
October 22, 2015     Cheney Free Press
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October 22, 2015

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, HENEY FREE PRESS .... Thursday, October i15/', I~L'~ i~:~;. ~ ~ ....... III ~ I II I i I i ( al By AL STOVER S taff Reporter Medical Lake residents can expect a few familiar faces to return to the school board. Current board members Rod Von Lehe, Ron Cooper and Felicia Jensen are r 'xng unopposed in the Nov. 3 election. Von Lehe, who did not respond to interview requests, is a farmer who represents District 2 NS has served on the school board since 1999. His wife Valerie Von Lehe was a teacher in the Medical Lake School 19istrict. Cooper, who represents District 4, said he was excited about the board's work and Welcomed the opportunity to serve another term. During his last term he met legislators and encouraged them to fully fund education. He was also excited when the school began of- fering all-day kindergarten. Jensen, who represents District 3, ran for election because she wanted to continue giving back to the school district. Like Cooper, she has enjoyed her time on the board and advocated for funding education mandates. "As a parent and as a community member, I see first-hand how Rod Von much time, work and dedication our teachers and staff have to ensure the kids are getting the best education possible," Jensen said. "That dedication, their professionalism and positive attitude makes it easy to want to give back." Being the board's Washington Inter- scholastic Activities Association (WIAA) represenative, Cooper said he is impressed with the number of studentswho put their time into extracurricular activities. With high school football garnering some negative at- tention due to safety, Cooper said football can be a dangergus sport, but the schools do a good job of preparing the athletes and making sure students are healthy. "I know the coaches receive continu- Photo by AI Stover 'Ulupalakua' Members of Eastern Washington University's Hui 'O Hawaii club dance to the "Ulupalakua" song during the JFK Library's annual Oktoberfest fund- raiser, Oct. 17 where the library was transformed into a tropical paradise. Composer John Pi'ilani Watkins wrote "Ulupalakua" to honor the Ulupalakua Ranch and the paniolos, also known as Hawaiian cowboys. ous training on how to use proper equipment and recognize injury symptoms in an effort to minimize serious injury," Cooper said. "I do not think high school football should be banned. However, I do think that we need to be vigilant in looking for ways to keep our players as safe as possible." One of the ways he hopes to encour- age community members to be involved with the school is to communicate with the schools directly. Having had children and grandchildren who went through Medical Lake, he always felt the schools welcomed his input. "One person can make a difference in our schools if they choose to make that connection and become involved," Cooper said. Both Cooper and Jensen have seen positive changes in the district in the last couple of years, including the Nicol implementation of all- day kindergarten at HaUett and Michael Anderson elementa- ry schools and more professional develop- ment opportunities for staff. Ron Cooper Two challenges Jensen sees the district facing are time and resources to address the needs of Washington State Learning Standards and testing requirements. "The good news is that our teachers have embraced these requirements and use all of the available resources to them as well as their own personal time to meet this challenge," Jensen said. Cooper said he would like to see the state fully fund education during this next term on the board. "When I first became a school board member, it was during an economic downturn and funds were being cut," See ML Candidates page 10 Director 4 position her masters degree in cur- needs of all our commudi- By AL STOVER Staff Reporter riculum and instruction ty's children," Nicol said. The Cheney School from Lesley University in "I also understand that, Board District Director 4 Cambridge, Mass. as a board, we must be re- election is the only posi- Nicol taught in the sponsive and receptive to tion to come down to one Cheney School Districtparents, staff, students and candidate: Stacy Nicol. from 1999-2006. After the community at large, Current board director staying home to help take encouraging an on-going, Rick Mount originally ffied care of her children, she open dialog." for reelection but with- returned to teaching with For Nicol, part of that drew his name in May. In the Washington Virtualopen dialog is striving to an earlier interview with Academies in 2009. engage more commtmity. the Cheney'Free Press, "I have taught every- members in the discussion Mount, who'sbeenaboard thing from first through andsolutionofthedistrict's member for16 years, stated eighth grade, including growing population and several reasons why he Title 1 reading and tech- infrastructure issues. withdrew and thought it nology education," Nicol"We have so many was "time for some new said. "I currently teach amazing resources and blood" on the board, second and third grade." ideas that come directly Nicol grew up in Nicol's father is a re- from our community," Ni- Cheney and attended tired EWU professor and col said. "Now it is time to Betz Elementary, as well her mother is a nurse,reflect on the outcome of as junior high and high Nicol said she wants thebond, gather input and school in Cheney. After to be an experienced posi- move forward because the graduating in 1994, she tive voice for students facility challenges are real attended and graduated throughout the district, and our students need from the University of "With an extensive a better high school in Idaho with a bachelor background in and passion which tolearn." of science in education, for education, I will advo- Al Stover can be reached K-8. She later received cate for the educational at Vietnam veterans honored tM dical Lak High School By AL STOVER were shot down by a mis- cross was replaced by a Staff Reporter sile, Dec. 21 1972, over granite rock from Silver A crowd of students, North Vietnam during Lake with an engraved dignitaries and military Operation Linebacker II. plaque on it. By this time personnel gathered in The POW/MIA group Walters' remains, which front of Medical Lake High at Fairchild Air Force Base had been missing for 16 School as the Jonas Babcock asked Medical Lake High years, had returned home. Chapter of the Daughters School if they could dedi- In 2008 the faceplate on of the American Revolution cateamemorialforWalters the rock was scratched held a special memorial to on the campus becauseand was replaced by the honor Vietnam veterans, of his ties to the city. The American Legion Post 196 Oct. 15. original memorial wasand the Medical Lake High The event included a dedicated in 1974 with SchoolJROTC. rededication ceremony of a wooden cross and the Larry Beeler knew sev- theCapt.DonovanWalters planting of a tree. eral of the Olive 1 crew memorial that stands on "The tree was a sap- members before they left the school's lawn. DAR re- ling," former vice principal on the mission. During the placed the memorial'sbrass Russ Brown said, referring ceremony, he recalled the faceplate, whichwasstolen, to the large tree behind events leading up to the with a granite plate. Walters' memorial. "Forty- mission. Walters, a B-52 pilot one years later, youcansee "This was my family, from Fairchild Air Force what it has become." we partied together, we Base, along with the other Over time, age. andflew missions together," six crew members of the weather damaged the Beeler said. "I'll miss them Olive 1, a B-52G model, wooden cross. In 1995 the for the rest of my life. There Photo by AI Stover Christine Waiters Chrispen (left), daughter of Capt Donovan Waiters accepts a burial flag from Col. Charles McDaniel, commander of 92nd Air Refueling Wing, Fairchild Air Force Base (right) as 5th District Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers looks on. won't be a day I won't be Christine Waiters Chrisp- "I'm overwhelmed thinking about them." en, Walter's daughter who with the opportunity to be Family members of the traveled to Medical Lake here," Chrispen said. deceased airmen received from Texas to attend the AI Stover can be reached burial flags, including ceremony, at al@cheney Congratulations[ STUDENT of the WEEK Ethan Victor oca o : I KindergartenAcademicStudent ofthe Week Spokane Cheney | 509-465-1749 509-559,5038 I Airway Heights Fairways Plaza | 509-244-9968 509-413-2140 II I Medical Lake Kiwanis Academic Student of the Week Freshman, Julia Olmstead Medical Lake Kiwanis Meets Every Wednesday at 6:30 a.m. at the UnDeBee's, except for the first Wednesday of the month.