NEWS BRIEFS: Free family workshops set for Forks … and other items

FORKS — Quillayute Valley School District Early Learning Coalition is bringing “READY! for Kindergarten” workshops to the West End.

The workshops are aimed toward parents and caregivers with children ages birth to 5 to teach families skills to nurture a child’s development that foster essential early literacy, math and social-emotional skills.

Orientation and sign ups for the workshops will begin at 5 p.m. Wednesday at the Forks Elementary School stage, 301 S. Elderberry Ave.

The three free workshops with take-home activities and tools equip parents and caregivers to help babies and young children develop strong brain connections for success in school, according to a news release.

“Parents and caregivers are a child’s first and most influential teachers,” said Robert Shadle, Forks Elementary School principal.

“Using READY! for Kindergarten, we can show families how to be the most important and effective teachers they can be to cultivate their child’s development from birth to age 5.”

For more information, call Janet Thompson at 360-374-6262 ext. 459 or Sandra Velasquez at 360-374-6262 ext. 472.

Free program

PORT TOWNSEND — Author Paula Becker will speak Thursday from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Port Townsend Library, 1220 Lawrence St.

Becker is the award-winning author of “Looking For Betty MacDonald: The Egg, The Plague, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle and I,” and co-author of “The Future Remembered: The 1962 Seattle World’s Fair and Its Legacy” and “Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition: Washington’s First World’s Fair.”

Becker has written for since 2001 and is a staff historian.

Her essays on the site document all aspects of Washington state history.

For more information, email Keith Darrock at

Coffee with mayor

SEQUIM — The city’s “Coffee with the Mayor” program will resume Thursday at 8:30 a.m. at Bell Creek Bar & Grill, 707 E. Washington St.

This event is open to the public.

Karen Kuznek-Reese, city clerk and staff liaison to the city Arts Advisory Commission, will join the mayor for the meeting.

The mayor will be at Bell Creek Bar & Grill each month to listen to anyone who wants to chat, ask questions, express a concern or make a comment about the city or community.

For more information, email Dennis Smith at

Mandala retreat

SEQUIM — Ruth Marcus will host a Mandala drawing retreat Thursday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in The Lodge’s media room, 660 Evergreen Farm Road.

Marcus is the author of “Haiku & Mandala: The Wedding of Ancient Art” and will talk about the process of drawing an illuminated mandala as well as guide attendees through drawing mandalas.

The cost includes drawing materials and a light snack.

No previous drawing experience is required.

Advance registration can be made at

For more information and cost, email

PA School Board recognizes its five directors for their efforts

PORT ANGELES — Gov. Jay Inslee proclaimed the month of January as School Board Recognition Month in Washington state to honor officials in public education.

This year marks the 22nd annual observance initiated by the National School Boards Association in 1995.

The Port Angeles School District honored its five directors at a recent school board meeting.

“We appreciate our directors — President Joshua Jones, Vice President Sarah Methner, Cindy Kelly, Dr. Sandy Long, Susan Shotthafer — for their support of our staff and for their many long hours of work on behalf of our students and schools,” Port Angeles Schools Superintendent Marc Jackson said.

The Port Angeles School District Board oversees the district’s operating budget and sets policy affecting approximately 3,770 students and about 500 employees.

Directors receive no pay for their service.

They attend two regular meetings per month and regularly visit schools, attend district events, serve on committees and task forces, represent the district at community events and receive public input on a wide array of topics.

Directors also attend board study sessions, intensive training workshops and legislative conferences every year.

Directors serve for four-year terms, and members are elected by voters districtwide.

For more information, visit

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