Highline students have attended an overnight outdoor program at Waskowitz Outdoor Education Center for decades. Students explore and learn about the beauty of the Pacific Northwest through forest and river ecology classes, as well as form bonds with classmates and teachers.
The program has traditionally been part of the sixth grade and transitioned to middle school when the sixth grade moved to middle school. Beginning next year, the program will return to the elementary school experience and will transition from sixth grade to fifth grade.
For the 2023-24 school year, all Highline fifth-grade and sixth-grade students will attend a three-day, two-night program at Waskowitz. This ensures no students or grade level is skipped as we transition the program to fifth grade.
Middle school students and Hazel Valley Elementary students will attend in the fall of 2023. Students at all other elementary schools will attend in the spring of 2024.
Starting in the 2024-25 school year, all fifth-grade students will participate in the four-day, three-night program.
There are several benefits to this transition. Placing the outdoor school experience in elementary school streamlines the planning process. The curriculum taught at Waskowitz aligns well with the fifth-grade curriculum, specifically the content taught about ecosystems.
We recognize this change may be a disappointment for some staff, students and families. We believe this transition provides a high-quality and meaningful outdoor learning program for students in both grades while improving the program for all future students.
We are committed to making outdoor education accessible and welcoming for all students. Waskowitz Outdoor Education Center will no longer be identified as Camp Waskowitz based on feedback that the term “camp” has negative associations for some families.
If you have a question, please submit it through our online form. We will share responses on the website and through future communication.