When you go to school in a National Scenic Area, the opportunities for field study are endless.

In addition to our efforts to establish an outdoor education lab on district property (cover), Skamania’s students and teachers are taking this year’s motto—“The Gorge is our classroom”—to heart. They’re exploring and building lessons around places like Beacon Rock and the National Wildlife Refuge at Steigerwald Lake.

These visits are more than field trips. They are opportunities to introduce students to the geology and biology of their neighborhood while incorporating lessons in math, science, social studies, language arts and even physical education. They learn important concepts while gaining an appreciation of the region they call home. Concepts become real.

When I arrived in Skamania School District a year and a half ago, I had the opportunity to meet many of you. Then, after the Eagle Creek fire hit, I visited many of you, checking on our students’ safety. Through our conversations, I learned about the school district’s role as a provider of emergency shelter and a Life Flight landing pad.

Those conversations set me on a course not only to focus on what our students need to learn in order to function in the world of tomorrow but what our community needs to remain safe and healthy today.

I appreciate your support as I’ve been getting to know your district, and I welcome your input as we continue to grow it together.

Dr. Ralph Pruitt, Superintendent