Does Washougal High School really care about the safety of its students? –


Washougal resident Nicole Elliott shares concerns about what she believes to be inconsistent communication from Washougal High School administration

Editor’s note: The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are those of the author alone and do not reflect the editorial position of

Washougal High School students rallied in a bid to exercise their First Amendment on Monday (Jan. 31). WHS appears to have worked with the students to coordinate the event, which took place during school hours, where one student, in particular, took charge in hopes of attracting state attention. Washougal Secondary School Principal Sheree Clark was pleased with the efforts and results of Monday’s protest.

Nicole Elliott

What she didn’t know, however, was that the event coordinated with the school would continue the next day where students planned to enter their classes normally but without their masks to protest mask mandates at the school. statewide. The student who led this week’s events told Monday’s pre-protest meeting that under no circumstances were students to be disrespectful, but would politely refuse to wear a mask when asked and go on with their day. Their hope, however, was that the students would be forced off the school campus so that absences recorded for that day would attract state attention.

Emails were sent to parents regarding the protests both on Monday and the day after February 1, giving a very detailed explanation of how the initial protest on Monday was going and Tuesday’s rules and expectations as well as the consequences for those who did not comply. .

WHS parents know all too well the massive amounts of emails they receive regarding rules and expectations that revolve around mask mandates and all things COVID, but what about communication regarding student safety in relation to child predators who are hired by the school?

Recently, a Washougal High School women’s volleyball coach was fired after learning that he engaged in inappropriate conduct with female students to the point that it was clearly passed on by the students he had ‘groomed’ some of the girls from the volleyball team. According to some of these students, the volleyball coach recently moved from Seattle and vaguely stated that the reason for his departure was due to “misunderstandings between parents”.

Does Washougal High School conduct thorough background checks on staff they hire? Did they question this coach’s last place of work and if so, was the school asked why he was no longer with them? Didn’t they see the red flags?

What about emails to parents with at least one student safety statement regarding this situation? Why haven’t parents received updated communication regarding the event as well as detailed protocols for staff hires?

Washougal High School is not the only school in the Washougal School District to have recently fired a child predator. A separate situation arose in which a teacher sent an inappropriate email to female students and asked them to follow each other on Snapchat. The students shared that he would “only” bring female Red Bulls students and tell them they could have any guy because of their good looks.

WHS and the Washougal School District may have their methods of communicating mask mandates and COVID protocols down to a science, but communications regarding the safety of Washougal students from child predators do not seem be a practice priority and parents should ask, “Where is the real safety issue for our students?” Mask mandate protocols or child predators who are hired for our schools and who can impose physical, emotional and mental risks on our children.

Nicole Elliott


Comments are closed.