September 6, 2012 |

Naming process begins for Medical Lake Alternative School

By JAMES EIK

Staff Reporter

The Medical Lake Alternative School could receive a new name in the coming months, following a discussion at the Aug. 28 meeting of the Medical Lake school board.

Principal Trish Smith said students from last year went through a number of potential names for the school, coming up with Lakeview and Lakes. The school board heard the different suggestions from last year's students, while suggesting the school could bear the name of a former district employee with a strong connection to alternative education.

The name change would require new letterheads and material for the school.

“It would be nice to have a different name than Medical Lake Alternative School,” board member Julie Albright said. “Becuase sometimes that has a negative connotation.”

She referenced other schools in Spokane, like Havermale, which have different names that place less emphasis on the alternative portion of the name.

The alternative school was previously the Medical Lake Experiential High School, before adopting its current moniker.

The board will be discussing the potential name change, with more information coming in the future.

Policies passed at the board meeting included an update to the student rights and responsibilities handbook, rewording of public access to district records and its students and telecommunications policy.

The first read of a policy outlining the maintaining of professional staff and student boundaries online was passed as well. Part of the policy outlines the proper use of social media with students. Training for staff regarding the content was all on DVDs this year, Veltri said.

Veltri said Walker Construction hoped to be finished with work on the high school tennis courts by the end of August. Courts on the high school property needed new surfaces in some parts, and will benefit from new fencing as well.

Construction at the new alternative school location on Broad Street wrapped up before classes began. Smith said some students visited during the summer and were ready to have classes in the building.

“It's very nice,” she said. “Some kids came in and were very excited about it.”

The district's maintenance and information technology departments moved into the alternative school's former location, two portable buildings next to the administration office.

Veltri spoke about the district's parking situation, particularly in the spots surrounding the high school.

“Our parking is pretty limited,” she said.

The lot across from the high school isn't intended for student use, largely stemming from safety precautions.

Overall the atmosphere in the district was noticeably different from the previous year, without any major building construction or additions taking place.

“It's not like last year, when we were rushing to get the middle school ready,” Veltri said.

James Eik can be reached at james@cheneyfreepress.com.

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