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School Update 9/13/20

Dear Parents and Families,

We have been monitoring the air conditions over the weekend. While remote learning will continue on it’s normal schedule this week, school facilities will be closed due to hazardous air conditions on Monday, September 14. The district’s meal service at six schools and four community locations will continue on its normal schedule. As a reminder, meals are free for any child from birth to age 18, and no qualifications are needed. If air quality continues to be hazardous, we will send updates during the week, so please check your email or the longviewschools.com website. If you have questions please call your school.
Thank you for supporting our schools.

Dan Zorn, Superintendent
Longview Public Schools

2020-09-14T15:31:06-07:00September 13th, 2020|

School Reopening Update

Dear Parents and Families,

With the COVID-19 situation changing rapidly, and some school districts announcing returning to school remotely, I want to give you an update on our planning progress.  The safety of our students and staff is a top priority and the guiding principle in our school reopening plans.  As we prepare for the 2020-21 school year, our continued goal is to safely serve as many kids as possible with in-person learning as soon as we can.

We have spent the summer planning and preparing for three different scenarios for the start of the 2020-2021 school year: 1) 100 percent remote learning, 2) a part-time in school, part-time remote learning model and 3) a full-time return to school for all students.

We anticipate making a school reopening decision in early August and will communicate the plan to you once it is determined. The board will be discussing school reopening options at the Monday, July 27 board meeting and again at a board work session on Friday, July 31. The school reopening steering committee meets again on Wednesday, July 29 to talk about plan options.  This steering committee is made up of teachers, support staff, administrators, parents and union representatives and has provided significant input to our planning efforts.

Because of the quickly changing landscape related to the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are trying to be deliberate and thorough in our decision making process.  We are regularly assessing local health conditions under the advisement of the County Health Department while closely following guidance from state and federal agencies.  We are in regular meetings with other Southwest Washington school districts and analyzing the latest available medical information.  We are also continuing our ongoing discussions with union leadership.  All of this information will be used to determine the manner in which we will open school in September.

I am confident we will find the right solution that balances the health and academic needs of our students and staff.  Thank you for your patience.  Together we will get through this tough time.


Dan Zorn, Superintendent

Longview Public Schools

2020-07-29T16:09:39-07:00July 27th, 2020|

Chromebook check out information

To assist families with internet access who may be struggling with having the computer necessary to connect to these on-line resources, we will be checking out Chromebooks to students and their parents at our lunch distribution sites on Friday, March 27 and Monday, March 30 between 12:00 pm-12:30pm.

Chromebooks will be distributed to any of our students at the following locations: St. Helens Elementary, Kessler Elementary, Monticello Middle School, Northlake Elementary, Columbia Heights Elementary and Mint Valley Elementary.

Xfinity has made WiFi Hotspots in out of home locations available for free to anyone who needs them.  Follow instructions at https://wifi.xfinity.com/ to locate and join the Hotspots in various community locations. You can also access WiFi from areas near most of our schools by using the LPS-BYOD WiFi network.

In addition, we plan to launch a teacher driven remote learning model after the previously scheduled Spring Break, which ends on Friday, April 10.  On April 13 and 14 our teachers will be designing remote, weekly lessons that will be available to all of our students beginning April 15.  Instructional activities may be delivered to homes through digital technology tools, paper copies of learning packets, or a combination of both. Your student’s teacher will be contacting you with more details when the remote instruction begins.

2020-03-30T13:54:20-07:00March 26th, 2020|

Childcare resources for First Responders and Medical Professionals

Longview Schools has partnered with Educational Service District 112 (ESD 112) and Childcare Aware to support families of First Responders and medical professionals seeking childcare options.

Visit Childcare Aware at bit.ly/CCAWAOnlineLookup or call the Family Center at 1-800-446-1114 to search for available child care centers during the mandatory school closures due to Covid-19. You will receive an updated list of open child care programs in our area that can meet your child care needs.

Childcare Aware logo

2020-03-20T14:08:33-07:00March 20th, 2020|

Mark Morris FBLA students win awards!

Mark Morris High School FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America) had 18 winners at the FBLA Regionals Competition on January 27, 2020. Since they all were in the Top 6, they all advance to State. Quite an accomplishment – Go Monarchs!

Mark Morris FBLA winners








Digital Video Production 1 Raeanne Allen & Emma Johnson
Emerging Business Issues 1 Bri Johnson & Gabe Slind
Global Business 1 Mackynlee Tweit & Dahlia Vazquez
Intro to Business Presentation 1 Carson Allen, Finnegan Boyd, Josh Pond
Business Law 1 Bri Johnson
Broadcast Journalism 2 Joe Burchett & Bri Johnson
Business Ethics 2 Bri Johnson
Client Service 2 Elisabeth Weber
Digital Video Production 2 Finnegan Boyd, Tyler Kooiman, Jacob Robertson
Intro to Public Speaking 2 Carson Allen, Finnegan Boyd, Josh Pond
Public Service Announcement 2 Raeanne Allen, Peyton Blondin, Jacob Robertson
Business Communications 2 Emma Johnson
Intro to Business Procedures 2 Josh Pond
Political Science 2 Tyler Kooiman
Emerging Business Issues 3 Elizabeth Martin
Intro to Business Procedures 3 Peyton Blondin
Intro to Business Procedures 4 Carson Allen, Finnegan Boyd, Josh Pond
Personal Finance 4 Tyler Kooiman
Impromptu Speaking 5 Tyler Kooiman
Business Law 5 Madison Scudder
Publication Design 6 Elisabeth Weber
Sales Presentation 6 Jakob Burleson
Health Care Administration 6 Allie Scudder


2020-03-16T15:33:23-07:00February 21st, 2020|

Replacement levy passes – Thank you!

The Longview Schools replacement levy passed with 58 percent support from the community – thank you! School districts need the trust and backing of the public to be successful and we are very grateful to all of you.

We are also thankful for our dedicated and professional employees. The genuine care the Longview Schools team has for the students we serve assures that we will continue to provide our kids a quality education and a bright future.

About ten years ago the high school graduation rate stood at 67 percent and the district was struggling. Now, the high school graduation rate is 86 percent, and well above the state average.

The district is on the right path.

It’s not just graduation rates that are doing well, its student achievement too. Gains in reading are impressive, with an average 15 percentage point gain of students testing at or above the state standards compared to their first year tested on the state mandated assessment. That translates into 420 more kids reading at the standard level than the first year this data was collected.

In math, we’ve seen a 2.4 percentage point gain in the number of students who test at or above state standards. In both reading and math, at all grade levels, the gains we’re experiencing exceed the average gains across the state.

District employees are doing outstanding work to meet the academic and social/emotional needs of our students. Creating a positive school climate where kids want to come to school leads to higher student achievement and brighter futures for our kids.

Recently, the district pre-apprenticeship program earned state certification. Being one of just a handful of certified programs across the state means our students have an advantage in pursuing careers in the trades.

Students are receiving a quality education that provides them with options upon graduation to attend college, enlist in the military, pursue a career in the trades or join the workforce.

Looking ahead, we will continue to focus on providing students a quality education. The passage of the replacement levy means teachers will get the training to support student achievement and capitalize on the gains we’ve made.

You will also see a continued spotlight on literacy. Research clearly shows kids with strong literacy skills achieve in class and graduate high school. The more books we get in students hands, the more we encourage parents to read to their kids, the better off our community will be.

The school district is providing kids a quality education and is on the right path.  Our staff is doing outstanding work and we look forward to continuing to work together to help lift Longview.

We appreciate your trust and support in Longview Schools.


2020-02-14T08:50:50-08:00February 13th, 2020|

Incident near RA Long – all okay

Dear Parents and families, At about 8:15am this morning an incident occurred at the intersection of Nichols and Louisiana, which is near RA Long High School. The district was immediately in contact with law enforcement, took safety precautions as the incident unfolded and the all clear was given by Longview Police at about 8:40am. All kids are safe and sound.

2020-02-13T16:10:26-08:00February 13th, 2020|

A message for Mark Morris parents and families

This message was sent to the parents and families of Mark Morris students today (February 3, 2020):

Dear Mark Morris Parents and Families,

A unexpected heating system problem occurred at Mark Morris today. The heating issue is in the process of being fixed right now. To fix the problem the heat to the building has temporarily been shut off. Classes will continue as planned for today. Mark Morris administrators will be monitoring classroom temperatures to make sure students and staff members remain comfortable.

Given the heating issue, the Mark Morris girls varsity basketball game, scheduled for tonight at 7pm at Mark Morris, has been moved to Lower Columbia College at 7pm. The Monarch girls JV basketball game, scheduled for today, will be rescheduled. All other after school activities scheduled for today are cancelled. Information about any additional scheduling changes will be sent to parents via Skyward email and posted to the district web site and Facebook page. We appreciate your patience as we get the problem fixed.

Please call the office if you have questions at 360-575-7663.

Thank you,


Brooks Cooper, Principal

Mark Morris High School



2020-02-04T11:49:09-08:00February 3rd, 2020|

Spotlight – Vickie Giles, Transportation Department

Employee Spotlight – Mrs. Vickie Giles

For over 40 years Vickie Giles worked in the Longview Schools Transportation Department. She retired on January 31, 2020. Thank you for 40 great years Vickie – you will be missed!

Where were you born? At the Cowlitz General Hospital in Longview.

Where did you go to high school? Kelso High, class of ’73.Picture of Vickie Giles retirement part

What did you want to be when you grew up? Quite honestly my mom was a waitress and a cook, and I really thought I would be a waitress my whole life.

When you got out of high school what did you do? I went to work as a waitress.

How did you go from being a waitress to driving a bus? My brother in law, Bill Brady, was the mechanic in the transportation department – he called me.

What year was that? 1979.

Did you interview to be a bus driver? Sort of, Bill took me out in a bus, showed me how to shift, and then had me show him that I could in fact do so.

Had you ever driven a bus before? Oh no.

Picture of Brenda McCowen and Vickie Giles

What was training like? Practicing down shifting. I needed to be able to down shift while climbing 38th hill, as many of the afternoon routes originated from Cascade.

Your training consisted of coming in and getting the keys to a bus? Yeah, pretty much. I’d come in and get the keys to a bus and go driving around Mt. Solo by myself.

You drove around in a full-size stick shift bus? Yes. A 35-foot, stick shift bus. Bill showed me how to shift, then I was told, “Come in and practice driving and whenever you’re ready let us know.”

What else did the training entail? They told me when I was able to accomplish driving up the 38th hill by myself, I would be ready to go out and be a bus driver.

Did you drive up the 38th hill? Yes, I decided I was ready to attempt driving up the 38th hill. Back then it was steeper and leveled out at the top, so the goal was to get to the top. You always had to down shift at least twice to get up the hill.

Was your first attempt to drive up the hill successful? No, I thought I was ready. I was 24 years old and ready to take that hill, and low and behold, I missed my gear going uphill. The bus stopped on the hill and I could not get it going again. I had to call the mechanics to get the bus off the hill.  On the next try I accomplished it.

What was driving kids for the first time like? I honestly don’t remember what it felt like having kids on the bus, I think I was more focused on getting the bus down the road, following the stops on the piece of paper I was handed, and getting them back off of the bus.

How many years did you drive? I drove for 15 years, from 1979 to 1994.Vickie Giles and Misty Woodrum

How many years have you worked in the transportation department? Almost 41 years.

What did you enjoy about driving? I enjoyed the kids. You build a rapport with the students and I’m friends with a lot of those students today. In fact, I just got a message from one of them that rode my bus about 35 years ago. I’ve met kids that became my baby sitters. Overall this has been a great job.

What’s the strangest thing ever a kid brought on the bus? A kid brought a snake on the bus, and I’m deathly afraid of snakes.

Has bus driving changed over the years? It has changed drastically. As I’ve already stated, my training was “Here’s the keys, go practice and let us know when you’re ready”.

Do school busses still have stick shifts? No, now the busses have automatic transmissions and we have an extensive training program.

Have you ever worked anywhere else? Yes, my family moved to Southern California for about 18 months. All I knew was bus driving, so I went to work as a bus driver.

Did something happen while you were driving a bus in California? Yes, I tell this story in my driver training class, so that you understand why I am where I am at today.

What happened? I was dropping off the last 4 or 5 kids on a route. One of the kids asked me to take them down to the housing area where they lived. I checked the route sheet and that’s not where their stop was. So I said, “No, your stop’s right here.” One little boy was extremely insistent, but they all get off. As I pulled away, the little boy ran to the side of the bus, grabbed on and fell off – I ran over him.

What happened to the little boy? Thankfully, he lived.

Did you consider quitting your bus driver job? Yes, but the dispatcher said, “I want you here tomorrow”. So, I kept driving.

Did the incident change you? Yes, because of that incident, I was determined to make a difference with other bus drivers. I wanted to be a driver trainer.

Was the accident a devastating event? It was very devastating and changed my life. My training has always incorporated school bus stops from the very beginning. I give drivers a specific search pattern (in the bus mirrors) that they must do before pulling away from every bus stop. I made something good out of a terrible incident.

When you moved back to Longview did you start working as a bus driver? Yes, in September of 1990.

Did you get your bus driver training certificate? Yes.

When did you move to being a Dispatcher and Trainer? About 1994.

Is it hard to drive a bus? I don’t think so, but I’ve been doing it for two-thirds of my life.

When you look back at your career what are your thoughts? First off, I never dreamed that this would be a career job. I’m so grateful that I started into something where there’s a retirement system in place. I feel a sense of accomplishment in my ability to train new drivers in the safe pick up and drop off of school children.

Do you look back on your 40 years with happy thoughts? I do, this has been a great place to work.

Are you excited about retirement? It is bittersweet.

Why is retiring bittersweet? I’m really excited for retirement, but I’ve made a lot of connections here. I can’t imagine getting up and not coming to work here.

Are you going to be a substitute bus driver? All along I’ve said, “I’m not going to sub, I’m not going to sub.” Then I started feeling an emotional tug of war within myself – Do I really want to give this all up? So, it’s bittersweet.

What would you want people to remember about Vickie Giles? That she was personable and fun to work with. I enjoy people and I like it when people enjoy my company. I was a dedicated employee who was approachable and passionate about the safety of school bus stops. I took the training of other drivers seriously while still making it an enjoyable learning experience

Would you do it all over again? I would.







2020-03-16T15:34:35-07:00February 3rd, 2020|

R.A. Long provides work experience

R.A. Long High School “Job Coach”, Tiffany Kotera, recruits local businesses to provide students work experience. This is one of many ways the district supports students in their growth to be “work ready” high school graduates. The students do outstanding work and gain real life experience outside the classroom.

These experiences wouldn’t be possible without the cooperation and support from businesses like Red Leaf Coffee, Walgreens, Diamond Showcase, Grounds for Opportunity, Sutinen Computers and Little Indian Embroidery. Thank you to the businesses who participate, and employees like Mrs. Kotera, who do such a great job supporting, teaching and mentoring students.

In the photos below, students Adam Verd and Kassidi Williams, take time to be interviewed by Daily News reporter Mallory Gruben. R.A. Long principal Rich Reeves and Tiffany Kotera provided background information and quotes for TDN’s story.

If your business would like to participate in having students come out and work, please contact Tiffany Kotera or any of the high schools.



2020-03-16T15:36:37-07:00December 19th, 2019|
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