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2021 District Collaboration Day

2021 District Collaboration Day
Posted on 11/03/2021
Carmen Presentation District Staff spent the day on November 1st, learning, reflecting, and collaborating with peers in their school buildings and throughout the District.

The morning started with a welcome from Superintendent Marty Brewer, Assistant Superintendent Michelle Olsen, and Tribal Chairwoman Frances Charles. Our new Klallam Language Teacher, Wendy Sampson, shared a Klallam prayer. The keynote speaker for our day was Carmen Watson-Charles, the District's new Native American Liaison. Carmen helped us kick off and acknowledge Native American Heritage Month by sharing the history of the Klallam people. Carmen's powerful presentation brought awareness of her ancestors' struggles and Klallam traditions and shed light on how they lived off the land along the strait and throughout the Olympic Peninsula.
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After that, the staff chose between 18 different breakout sessions. These sessions were taught by staff and community members who covered everything from self-wellness practices, inclusionary work, and how to support our students facing trauma. Staff also had the option to continue their understanding and learning around the Lower Elwha government-to-government partnership, Klallam Language, and a deeper dive into the book "Breaking Ground" by Linda Mapes. The goal of this collaboration day was to have enough offerings to meet the needs of all of our staff. The morning sessions finished, and The Lower Elwha Kallam Tribe provided a salmon lunch to all staff and community presenters. Staff then went back to their schools for further collaboration within their buildings.
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We want to express our appreciation to Bill Kindler (former school board member) and his children, who have provided the funds to make this day a reality. The fund was established in the loving memory of his wife, Trudy. Trudy had many passions. One passion was the relationship with our Native American neighbors-The Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe. Another is education as she was a teacher, and the third was art. She enjoyed collecting Native art from the LEKT.
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The family wants Trudy's legacy to support these areas of passion. She and her family believe that the more we understand each other's cultures, values, and beliefs, the more we respect each other and, therefore, the richer our lives are. The family believes the school district plays a valuable role in this regard hence the desire to provide support. We are grateful for the funding and for being able to carry out the Kindler Family mission.

Thank you to everyone at the District who made this day of learning possible, and thank you to the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe for your care, openness, and partnership. 

Carmen Watson-Charles' Keynote Presentation