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Two FFA members competed in the Washington FFA District VI Employment Skills competition on Tuesday, January 24.  

Participants in the National FFA Employment Skills Leadership Development Event (LDE) get a leg up on their future careers by developing the skills needed to seek employment in the industry of agriculture.

This LDE simulates real-world activities used by employers and tests students’ ability to perform effectively throughout the employment process. Students submit a cover letter and resume; complete an application and a telephone interview; and participate in a preliminary face–to–face interview. Students also experience a networking activity that could include an elevator pitch, a meal function or participating at a trade show event and receive a telephone offer where they negotiate for their job opportunity.

In this LDE, students will use many leadership skills including active listening, problem–solving and decision making as well as improve their written and oral communication skills. This event also helps students in their current search for jobs, internships, and part-time and full-time employment in any career field.

 Hanna Wright (left) and Jenna Johnson (right)

The Wa-Hi team earned first place at the District 6 FFA Agricultural Issues CDE at Oakesdale High School, Wednesday, January 25.
The team has qualified for the Washington State FFA Convention in May.

Back L to R Parker Morgan, Josh Nelson, Landon McNeil

Front L to R Alexa Kemp, Ami Weissenfels-Cross, Kylie Cochran


Snow White 2

The week of January 18-21, WaHi Drama Club presented the play Snow White! The show featured Snow White, her wicked stepmother, the Evil Queen, the tricky Mirror, 7 dwarves, 2 Narrators, a wonderful ensemble of trees and village people, and of course, a Dancing Chicken. 

The show was also entirely student-directed and cast by its officers, President Janni Blackham, Secretary Lucy Forest, and Treasurer James Coleman. 
We thank our cast and crew for all their hard work, parents for being so supportive, and everyone who saw the show!
Lucy Forest
Drama Club Secretary

The 2023 U.S. Army Junior Rifle Championships kicked off this morning, January 19, with a clinic hosted by the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit's International Rifle Team, Fort Benning, Ga. The annual competition brings the top junior marksmen from around the United States to Fort Benning, to compete side by side on the very ranges that the Home of Champions train on.

WaHi JROTC has four cadets that were invited and were escorted by their coach, SFC Mark Mebes. If you look at the photo attached, hopefully you can recognize our students. This competition is a "big deal".

Also, 1-5 February Mebes and I will be taking 10 cadets (Precision and Sporter Class) that qualified and invited to shoot at Sandy, UT for the Army JROTC Service Competition.

CSM (R) Anthony Marrero
Senior Army Instructor
Walla Walla H.S.



Congratulations to the GO BLUE Students of the Month for December!

GO BLUE Student of the Month is a way to recognize students who have shown the Blue Devil values of Grit, Ownership, Belonging, Lifelong Learning, Understanding and/or Engagement. Students are nominated by school staff members.

This month, the focus is on students who demonstrate BELONGING: a value defined as Blue Devils are respectful at all times and celebrate diversity. In the classroom these students: are kind to each other, listen without commenting when others are speaking, use kind words, smile, are polite to school personnel, and honor privacy.

Mr. Schumacher commented, “At Wa-Hi we value those that help others feel they belong. We define belonging as demonstrating respect at all times and celebrating diversity. Our Go Blue students of the month demonstrate this quality on a consistent basis and have been recognized by our staff for helping other students feel they belong. Please join us in congratulating our Go Blue students of the month.”

75 students were nominated by staff for displaying this trait. Two students from each grade level were then selected as December Students of the Month. Mr. Schumacher presented these students with a certificate and a GO BLUE t-shirt to celebrate their efforts and he shared the comments submitted by the teacher who had nominated them. The students were also recognized at the Assembly on Friday, January 20. They were challenged in a game of Family Feud; with school board President Derek Sarley, sophomore and junior Students of the Month against senior and freshman Students of the Month and Principal Schumacher.

Kaiden Taylor McCroskey 
Kaiden was nominated by his teacher Krystal Ceron, who said in part “you have become the safe spot for some of your other peers in the REACH program. I am beyond proud of you and the initiative you take outside of this room when no one else is looking. You helped out with a difficult situation on the bus a couple weeks ago not even thinking twice, helping redirect and calm down one of your peers from our program. Integrity is how you behave and act when no one else is looking.”

Shayla Creason
“Shayla shows up even when she doesn't want to or it's hard to. She also tries to put others above herself and have an open ear and heart for their needs. She likes to give most people a wave or smile so they know they don't go unnoticed or don't matter in their day to day lives. Shayla is encouraging and welcoming to many different kinds of students at Wa-Hi,” according to teacher Shayna Hutchens.

Kalypzo (Mouse) Luna
“Mouse is a student that I see as an ally and bridge between our general education and special education population. She treats all students and staff with respect and a genuine kindness that is not found amongst the masses. She often goes out of her way to make peers and staff feel as if they are a special part of her life, and I believe she does so with all of her heart. Her kindness, small tokens and gifts, set off a positive butterfly effect that I see spread amongst other students. She uses her strengths and talents to "pay it forward". She also speaks frankly about her reading disability in a way that not only conveys empathy but encourages others to embrace their perceived weaknesses and turn them into a platform for perseverance and celebrating diversity; the very meaning of this Blue Devil character trait,” said nominator Angela Sallee.

Leonel Moreno-Salazar
His nominator, Ms. Mouat said, “Leonel transforms whatever space he is in. He is so comfortable with his own unique personality that he makes others feel comfortable enough to be themselves too. I particularly love that he sometimes brings in a hat for his hat (so it doesn't feel left out). Leonel is a student who constantly invites others into the conversation, who jumps into whatever project we are undertaking, and who influences the atmosphere of the class in a positive way.”

Zane Rupe
Zane had two nominators. “Zane is always willing to volunteer to help younger orchestra students & stepped in at the last minute for the Pioneer winter concert. His commitment & dedication to excellence is much appreciated,” notes orchestra director Julia Woods. Mrs. Payne adds, “Zane does outstanding work in Plant Biology. He is humble, hard-working, kind and intelligent. I appreciate how he works with everyone and that the quality of his work is consistently outstanding.”

Olivia Shiffler
“Olivia,” said teacher Keith Michels, “radiates a positive energy during 6th period which lifts up those around her on a daily basis. She is always willing to discuss and engage her fellow classmates making them feel valued and that they belong. She has even made an effort to include foreign exchange students.”

Dariana Adorno
“Dariana has been a model in the numerous ways in which she interacts with all the faces of cultural diversity around her. I see her demonstrating belonging whether it be collaborating with a culturally and linguistically diverse peer, supporting a neurodivergent peer with course content, or her ability to recognize the ways in which cultural diversity plays into early childhood development and learning. I know through the respectful and knowing manner in which she interacts with others, that she is an example for our school community of what being an inclusive truly means,” said teacher Amy Reed.

Helen Criss
Ms Dickman who nominated her said, “Helen has an innate ability to help others feel they belong. All year in class Helen has interacted with integrity and respect towards everyone in our classroom. Thanks for your excellent citizenship, Helen!”

A list of the 75 nominated students can be viewed here.

On January 4th, Unified WaHi Blue Devils Basketball faced off against Othello Unified Huskies at Pioneer Middle School. This is the first ever WaHI Unified Basketball team where students from WaHi with different abilities can play together and compete. This is an excellent way for General Education Students to earn volunteer hours and participate in making WaHi's community-inclusive and Walla Walla as a whole. The Special Olympics of Washington sponsors unified sports and clubs across the state in elementary, middle, and high schools. If WaHi students are interested in being a part of Unified Blue Devils, please get in touch with Krystal Ceron and Libby Thompson, located in A105. Our next home game is at WaHi on January 25th at 04:00 pm against Grandview, Greyhounds. We ask all Blue Devils to pack the gym wearing their Blue Devils gear to cheer us on. 

Krystal Ceron
REACH Program Teacher 
Realizing Exceptional Accomplishments with Our Communities Help
Walla Walla High School 

Press Release: Walla Walla High School has partnered with Special Olympics to start a unified inclusive basketball program for students. A $3500 grant from Special Olympics helped get the program launched this school year. The co-ed team of 12 students will play a four game regular season schedule this winter with an opportunity to compete in districts, regionals and state depending on how the team fares. The team practices once a week under the leadership of coaches Jennifer Butenhoff and Krystal Ceron. Wa-Hi played Othello Wednesday at Pioneer Middle School. The team will play at Wa-Hi Wednesday, Jan. 25 at 4 p.m.

“Unified Sports and Clubs are students with developmental disabilities, and students without, playing and working together on the same team,” said Wa-Hi Special Education and 504 Administrator Libby Thompson. “This is a great opportunity for students participating in unified sports to compete for their school with the focus on inclusion and having fun.”

Wa-Hi will also have a unified soccer team this spring, and Garrison Middle School has a unified Robotics Team. According to Special Olympics, about 1.4 million people worldwide take part in Unified Sports, breaking down stereotypes about people with intellectual disabilities. Learn more about Unified Sports at: www.playunified.org.

Walla Walla High School’s JROTC Precision Rifle Team member Cadet Captain Raquelle Justice captured the Washington State Women’s Air Rifle state championship at the Spokane Rifle Club on Saturday in a contest that pitted 43 of the state’s top precision class rifle marksmen against each other. Shooters competed in two disciplines, air rifle and smallbore for state honors and a chance to represent their state at the Junior Olympic National Championship matches to be held at Hillsdale College in Michigan this May.

The Blue Devils competed in two matches Saturday; an air rifle match in the morning that consisted of 60 timed shots from the unsupported standing position, and a 3 position .22 rifle match where contestants fire 20 shots each from the prone, standing and kneeling positions. “Junior Olympics is always a long day for these athletes” commented WAHI Rifle Team Coach Mark Mebes “By the end of the day, they’ve been shooting for nearly 6 hours. Emerging successful here takes a lot of training and unwavering focus.”

WAHI’s Air Rifle Team consisting of Justice, Cadet Captain Ben Nelson and Cadet Captain Tristan Scott finished the event with a team score of 1661, putting them in second place for the state just behind Spokane Junior Rifle Club who produced a 1703. Justice’s gold medal performance garnered 557 out of a possible 600 points, placing her 5 points ahead of silver medalist Madison Thompson from Oak Harbor.

WAHI’s top shooter in the match was Scott, last year’s Washington State Men’s champion, who shot a 558 against stiff competition this year and finished in 4 th place for the state. In the smallbore rifle match that afternoon, Justice emerged as the Blue Devil’s top shooter with a 535, a personal record for her, claiming a bronze medal in the statewide competition. WAHI’s smallbore team, consisting of Justice, Cadet Major Maximus Malone, Cadet Lieutenant Micah Vawter and Cadet Lieutenant Colonel Kaden Kerr ended the day on a 2054 for a 2 nd place finish, behind Spokane Rifle Club.

“Invitations to the National Match will go out later this winter” Said Blue Devil Team Captain Benjamin Nelson “Raquelle will almost certainly get an invite as the Women’s State Champion and Tristan may get an invitation as well, depending where the national results place them.”

The Blue Devils returned home to begin training for a pair of national matches they qualified for earlier this season; the US Army Junior Air Rifle Championship in Fort Benning, Georgia in January and the Army JROTC National Rifle Championship in Sandy, Utah in February.

– By Wa-Hi JROTC Public Affairs

Walla Walla High School Color Guard provides support to the Wreaths Across America at Mountain View Cemetery December 17 2022. After the ceremony, volunteers placed wreaths on all the graves of local Walla Walla Veterans.