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Mark Hottowe and Sandy Mathewson receiving the award from nominator Mark Ross
Mark Hottowe and Sandy Mathewson receiving the award from nominator Mark Ross
ESD 112 Presents Regional WASA Awards (Photo) - 05/19/17

Educational Service District 112 presented regional awards on behalf of the Washington Association of School Administrators (WASA) to honor and recognize outstanding educational administrators and community members who have made extraordinary contributions to K--12 education. The Award of Merit, Student Achievement Leadership Award and Community Leadership Awards were presented at a ceremony Friday, May 19, at ESD 112 in Vancouver.

"Unlike private or charter schools our public schools welcome all students regardless of size, color, background, income or ability. For many children, public education is the only hope for creating a vibrant life and future success," said Mike Nerland, Chair of the WASA Awards for Region 112 and Assistant Superintendent of Teaching and Learning at ESD 112. "We're proud to recognize and celebrate those who dedicate their time, talent, and attention to making our public schools the best they can be for our children."

AWARD OF MERIT -- for effective leadership at the regional level
Presented to John Deeder, Superintendent, Evergreen Public Schools

Superintendent Deeder leveraged change across the region, providing great opportunities for students. From innovative partnerships to a focus on supporting students most in need, he inspired, challenged, mentored and impacted his colleagues. His humble approach, collaborative spirit, and courage set a standard for superintendent leadership others strive to reflect in their own practices.

STUDENT ACHIEVEMENT LEADERSHIP AWARD - for innovative programs improving student achievement
Mark Hottowe, Superintendent, Battle Ground Public Schools

Throughout Superintendent Hottowe's 41 years in education, he repeatedly demonstrated a heart for vulnerable and underserved youth. He spent his career helping to change school culture and climate through programs that reduce risk factors, build resiliency and enable positive learning environments. He created the Social-Emotional Learning Department in Battle Ground, and led the implementation of the Project AWARE grant, resulting in significant decreased suspensions at the district's high schools.

In recognition of outstanding contributions to education, this award was presented to:

* Colleen O'Neal / Battle Ground Education Foundation, Battle Ground School District
* Downtown Camas Association, Camas School District
* Child and Adolescent Clinic, Educational Service District 112
* Christie BrownSilva, Evergreen Public Schools
* Kelso Public Schools Foundation, Kelso School District
* George Cooper, Lyle School District
* Citizens for Ridgefield Schools, Ridgefield School District
* Ridgefield Boosters and Dawn Gaspar, President, Ridgefield School District
* A&J Select, John and Andra Mobley, Stevenson-Carson School District
* Fraternal Order of the Eagles, Stevenson Chapter, Stevenson-Carson School District
* One Prevention Alliance, Stevenson-Carson School District
* Skamania County Sheriff's Office, Stevenson-Carson School District
* Southwest Washington League of United Latin American Citizens, Vancouver Public Schools
* Mike Sprinkle, Chair, Citizen's Committee for Washougal Schools, Washougal School District

John Deeder and Mark Hottowe were also given Retirement Awards.

Photos from the ceremony can be downloaded here:

Volunteers from Prevent Coalition, Unite! Washougal, Fort Vancouver High School, and Officers from Vancouver Police Department at the PeaceHealth Memorial Take Back Site
Volunteers from Prevent Coalition, Unite! Washougal, Fort Vancouver High School, and Officers from Vancouver Police Department at the PeaceHealth Memorial Take Back Site
Prescription Drug Take Back Event Collects Over 2,454 Pounds of Pills (Photo) - 05/01/17

Over 1,000 Clark and Skamania County residents dropped off their unused and unwanted medications with local law enforcement officers and volunteers on Saturday, April 29th. The medicine disposal event was held at four locations throughout Clark and Skamania counties where a steady stream of cars waited to hand over prescription and other medications. Cascade Park Kaiser Permanente was the busiest location, serving 425 participants and bringing in 1,226 pounds of pills. All pills will be transported for incineration by the DEA.

The April 29th collection event is organized thanks to a community partnership including Battle Ground Police Department, Clark County Public Health, Connect Evergreen, Kaiser Permanente, La Center United, Legacy Hospital, One Prevention Alliance, PeaceHealth, Prevent Coalition, Prevent Together: Battle Ground Prevention Alliance, Skamania County Sheriff's Office, Unite! Washougal Community Coalition, U.S. Dept. of Justice Drug Enforcement Administration, Vancouver Police Department, Walgreens.

Prevent Coalition would like to thank PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center, Battle Ground Police Department, Skamania Sheriff's Office, and Kaiser Permanente Cascade Park for hosting the four event sites. Thank you Kaiser for purchasing the sharps containers that were handed out to participants. Thank you Clark County Public Health and Stericycle for recycling sharps and other collected materials. Thank you to all the staff and volunteers who made the event a success!

Unwanted medications also can be disposed of at several collection sites across Clark and Skamania Counties. Controlled substances, such as pain killers and tranquilizers, can be taken to participating law enforcement agencies and participating pharmacies. Non-controlled substances, such as over-the-counter medications, can be taken to local participating pharmacies.

Visit for more details on where to drop off your medications. For more information about the event, call Clark County Public Health at (360) 397-2121 ext. 4352, or contact the Prevent Coalition at

Skamania School District announces Dr. Ralph Pruitt as next leader - 04/26/17

The Skamania School District Board of Directors has selected Dr. Ralph Pruitt, Assistant Superintendent, International Schools Group, as its new Superintendent/Principal. The Board unanimously chose Dr. Pruitt to succeed retiring Superintendent Sally Godwin.

Pruitt holds a Doctorate in Educational Leadership from Lehigh University, a Master of Education from the University of Oregon, and Bachelor of Science in Education from Brigham Young University. Dr. Pruitt has 14 years of administrative experience in roles such as Assistant Superintendent, School Director, Director of Special Services and Curriculum Director. Prior to moving to the central office, he spent 17 years as a principal in the Camas and South Lane (OR) School Districts. Dr. Pruitt also has six years of teaching experience.

Pruitt will begin his new position on July 1.