Racial equity policy searches to extend equal opportunities
By Clara Atwell, Editor-in-Chief The Vashon community has long prided itself with holding the values of acceptance and equality in high regard. However, given that the majority of the island’s population is white, many residents have not experienced discrimination based on skin color.
This lack of diversity has led to what Stephanie Spencer, district director of teaching and learning, refers to as “color blindness.”
“Because traditionally [Vashon has been] a predominantly white culture, it creates sometimes what is called ‘color blindness.’ So those of us who are white aren’t necessarily aware of the small things that happen every day because we don’t tend to notice the difference in color,” Spencer said.
District policy 3212 ― Ensuring Educational and Racial Equity ― was adopted on Oct. 26, 2017. The policy was put in place to address discrepancies within test results between white and non-white students by uncovering subconsciously-held biases and raising awareness around white privilege within the district...Read More
Zero Waste Vashon draws attention to environmental issues
By Klara Plenk, Reporter As a community, Vashon is passionate about reducing the impact of waste on the environment. Currently, the island’s means of dealing with solid waste follows the global pattern of overusing resources, increasing its carbon footprint, contribution to greenhouse gas formation, and global warming.
The local conservation non-profit organization Zero Waste Vashon (ZWV) has tasked itself with teaching community members how to help make the island more environmentally friendly.
“In [your] daily habits, [you] can have small impacts on improving the use of the world’s resources,” ZWV board member Nancy O’Connor said.
The organization was created four years ago by community members who recognized a need for a recycling-focused organization on the island; at the time, no island group existed that dealt with the issue of solid waste. It is funded through contributions from individuals, King County, and private grants...Read More
Relish seeks to become a community gathering place
By Halle Wyatt, Reporter For over 15 years, The Hardware Store Restaurant has acted as a community hearth. Melinda Powers, the restaurant’s owner, is now looking to expand with the opening of her new business, Relish, right next door.
Relish is a cooking school that offers both a wide variety of classes every month, as well as instruction on home and life organization. Classes officially began in early December.
“We want to empower people to be able to know how to cook a handful of great meals,” Powers said.
Powers’s goal is for Relish to become a place where islanders can reconnect with important values of community values and self-education.
“Food and drink are part of our most basic needs, and we nurture each other with the gift of good food,” Powers said. “At the most basic level, it starts with taking care of ourselves and our families.”
Powers believes that a place like Relish has the ability to strengthen bonds between community members...Read More
Sophomore stars in local playSylvie Koefoed-Nielsen, Reporter
Vashon Island is a place that prides itself on an appreciation of the arts. The island theater scene provides many opportunities for young actors and actresses to prove their talent, and sophomore Lucy Rogers has done just that.
Rogers began acting six years ago when she auditioned for the lead role in the play “Bye Bye Birdie.” Although her age kept her from getting the role, it was the beginning of a lifelong passion.
“Ever since then, I’ve started acting, and I have really enjoyed it; it’s one of my favorite things to do now,” Rogers said.
Rogers recently expanded her resume by being cast as a starring role in the Vashon Center for the Arts (VCA) production of “My Mother, Myself,” a play that highlights sexual abuse and the conflicts of a mother-daughter relationships.
“I [was] the only high schooler in the show. Everyone else [was an] adult,” Rogers said. “It’s been really cool because most of the shows I’ve been in are Disney kind of shows … while this one has actual intensity.”...Read More