School Closed – Coronavirus

Updated Monday, April 6

Dear Students,

This afternoon, Governor Inslee made the call to keep school buildings closed through the end of the school year.  To help answer the many questions you must have, please visit our school district’s web page regarding the closure due to COVID-19.  There is a link at the bottom of the page to ask questions through a ThoughtExchange.

This week is Spring Break.  Get lots of rest.  Finish any last missing assignments.  Be prepared to start 4th quarter ready to learn via distance learning.  Let’s embrace this challenge and make the most of the time we have left together this school year!  To those of you who attended the practice Zoom session last Friday, I promised you I would share information as it became available.  Here is what I know so far:

    • Tuesdays are new Science learning days.  New Chemistry lessons will be posted each week on Monday mornings at 8:00 (in case you want to get ahead!)
    • Work for the week is due by Sunday at 11:59pm after the Tuesday it was assigned.
    • Office hours will take place through Zoom meetings on Tuesdays (11am-12pm) and Thursdays (1pm-2pm).  You will receive meeting instructions to your student Gmail before each meeting.  Attendance is optional but encouraged.
    • Check your student Gmail account daily.  Email me any time with any questions, comments, or concerns you have.
    • The Honors option will be available for 2nd semester.  Now that we have confirmation, I will be working out the details for the loosely outlined project in my original post.  Again, thank you for your patience and stay tuned.
    • I have reconfigured the Chemistry section of our class website to reflect the reality of distance learning.  Wondering about labs?  Me too!  We’ve got couple we will try to pull off from a distance – put purple cabbage on the shopping list the first week of June.  You will need it for Week 38.

As always, please reach out with any comments/questions/concerns.  Stay well, stay home, and see you soon.

Mr. Swart


Originally published March 13

Dear Students,

With the sudden closure of all schools across our region, we didn’t have the chance for a real goodbye or to discuss plans for how to keep things going outside of school.  My hope is that you will make the most of your time away from school and keep your brains active and engaged.

  • Students who wish to improve current grades: Use Synergy to identify missing assignments, then locate those assignments here.  Complete the work, then email me a picture of what you have completed.  All missing work will be awarded a maximum of 60% credit.  Email with any questions or to obtain copies of assignments that cannot be posted online.
  • Students who wish to earn bonus credit: Contribute to the STEAM Punks section of this website.  Pick a topic, explore it in depth, then write up your findings into a post that can be linked to one of the STEAM sections.  Wondering how to begin?  Visit the post on Sleep for an example of what your post might look like – you are limited only by your imagination!
  • Students who wish to earn Honors credit: Read about the Flint, Michigan water crisis caused by lead-contaminated drinking water.  Then, research another human-caused environmental / public health crisis caused by toxic chemicals.  National Geographic is a good starting point to learn about existing Superfund sites in the United States.  More details about project expectations to come.  Update: The Honors project is on hold until we receive confirmation that students will be allowed to earn an Honors credit for second semester.  
  • Please check back frequently for updates.  We will know by Thursday (March 19) about district support for teachers providing students with sustained distance learning opportunities.  I am unbelievably proud of the progress my students have made this year in chemistry.  My intent is to continue to use this space to post lessons to support continued learning, with the complete understanding that this work is for enrichment and understanding, not for grading.  See above to address and/or remedy current grades.  Please reach out via Synergy email or through the About Me comment section here at any time with questions, comments, or concerns.
  • Highline Public Schools – Closure Announcement
  • Meals for students during school closure
  • Need Internet access at home?

Stay well,

Mr. Swart

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s