Highlights from the 2013-2014 School Year


FHES students were honored when their pictures were chosen in May 2014.

FHES Sixth Grade Art students won top prizes for their mixed media watercolor /color pencil artwork submitted in the National Park Service Art Competition “Plants and Their Pollinators.”

“It is neat to have a chance to see my artwork up in a place other than school,” said Nick Clark.

Community Arts in the Park celebrates ecology through art. The competition goal is to raise awareness and inspire community connections to local ecology and outdoor stewardship, according to Raena Parsons. It is also a key component of San Juan Island National Historical Park’s first-ever BioBlitz, scheduled May 3-4, 2014 at American Camp. Here is more about the contest.


Attached are two newsletters from the elementary highlighting the new Outdoor Lab (June) and the Elementary Art Enrichment Program (for which SJPSF provides $3,000.00 per year for supplies …THANK YOU! Otherwise there would be NO Elementary Art program at all!) (April/May).


This year (2014) US News and World Report ranked Friday Harbor High as 11th in the state (out of 480) and #612 in the nation (out of  19,400), which was the basis of FHHS being named a Silver Award Winner. Here’s more.


The elementary school continues to be a place where great ideas come to be planted, and grow....

The elementary school continues to be a place where great ideas come to be planted, and grow….

This report from FHES counselor Mikah Smith:

The Student Council collected money for our annual fundraiser, and this year we will donate the money to the American Red Cross, specifically to help with the Oso mudslide disaster relief. The students ran a coin drive for three weeks, and we raised a total of $524. Very impressive! Thank you for your help!

The Student Council designed a new FHES t-shirt and sweatshirt, with artwork from our very own 4th grader Dexter Prescott! Proceeds from the t-shirt and sweatshirt sales also will be donated to the Red Cross.

In addition to our fundraiser, we ran a food drive to collect food items for our local food bank. The whole school collected about 350 food items. Thank you for making the food drive a great success!


FHES Outdoor Lab Groundbreaking Ceremony! (June 2014)

The seed for this celebration was planted several years ago when a team of educators, scientists, engineers and philanthropists came together with the idea to create a sustainable, hands-on learning environment where students could dig-in with science, mathematics, engineering, technology and artistic explorations.

Friday Harbor Elementary students will work with local scientists to explore garden-based activities that include landscape architecture, botanical illustrations, observation of plant growth and the behavior of pollinators; sift tiny arthropods out of soils; measure changes in the chemistry of soils and plants through the growing cycle; experiment with hybridization and grafting (and confirm results using state-of-the-art genotyping technology); test and compare composting and recycling methods; explore the chemical exchanges between plant roots, bacteria and fungi; and learn systematics and evolution by growing diverse plant families.
Design and operation of the garden will prioritize local materials, recycled water and nutrients, and renewable energy.

The outdoor lab will integrate food production, healthy eating and exercise alongside community collaboration and fun.

FHES Outdoor Lab Partnerships: – 13 FHHS Students Isabel Place and Emily Guard, Junior Project Community Council Grant recipients. Isabel’s and Emily’s $2800 grant funds will be applied to the Outdoor Lab’s raised beds and cold-frames.

Isabel and Emily also helped FHES to form a partnership with our local Grange which offered to provide a human workforce during groundbreaking and beyond.

Kwiaht – Russel Barsh, Director, Madrona Murphy, Botanist, and Nathan Hodges, Landscape Architect: islands-based scientific organization run by islanders, professional scientists, students, and volunteers.

San Juan Island National Historical Parks: Ranger Raena Parsons, Island Marble Butterfly Project-Growing and planting Brassicas to assist in restoring the Island Marble Butterfly habitat.


FHMS team wins the first place trophy!

FHMS team wins the first place trophy!

FHMS ROV Team Takes First Place in Pacific NW

Larry Wight has some great news to share with you…

The team consisted of Josiah Wegemer, Zach Fincher, Jacob Kaden and Matthew McElrith. The Middle School ROV (Remotely Operated Vehicle) Team placed first against 40 other teams from all around the Pacific Northwest on May 10th.

This event, in which we compete annually, involves designing an underwater ROV to accomplish several complex tasks at the bottom of the Weyerhaeuser Pool in Federal Way. This year’s competition was designed to mimic the exploration of a shipwreck.

“It was amazing,” said Josiah…“There were teams from all over. The college robots were amazing. In our Scout Class competition I was the pilot, Zach was operating the claw, Matthew was the cable-man, and Jacob was in charge of the window that we designed to see into the pool easily. We all worked well together…”

The Middle School team was supported by Jenny Wilson, FHMS ROV Advisor; Bob Tauscher, a retired engineer; and Molly Roberts from the UW labs.


This year’s Knowledge Bowl is set for February 1oth, 2015…and last year’s was GREAT!


Sixth grade student Zoe Wegemer earned first place in the San Juan Island Spelling Bee sponsored by the San Juan Island Rotary Club. The spelling bee is open to students in grades four through eight, from Friday Harbor Middle School, Stillpoint School, Paideia Classical School and FHES. We are very proud of Zoe for earning this award!

The art enrichment program at FHES was awesome!


The Art Enrichment Program at FHES, funded by Islands Museum of ART, San Juan Island Community Foundation, San Juan Island Public Schools Foundation, and the Washington State Arts Commission provides art experiences for our students periodically throughout the school year. The SJPS Foundation’s annual donation of $3000 is a key part of keeping this valuable program afloat!


Among the colleges, universities and post-secondary institutions that FHHS graduates from the Class of 2014 are attending: 

Arapaho Community College, CO

Arizona State University, AZ

Baylor University, TX

Bellevue College, WA

Bellingham Technical College, WA

Brigham Young University, UT

Bryn Mawr, PA

Carroll College, MT

Eastern Washington University, WA

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical, FL

Everett Community College, WA

Haverford College, PA

Northwest Hair Academy, WA

Oregon State University, OR

Portland State University, OR

Skagit Valley College, WA

University of Portland, OR

University of Washington, WA

Washington State University, WA

Western Oregon University, OR

Western Washington University, WA

Whatcom Community College, WA

Whitman College, WA