Briefing on high school plan includes a few Zoom surprises

Posted 10/14/20

Students in Port Townsend High School teacher Brandi Hageman’s forensics science class got a lesson from the scene of a crime last week.

Hageman was one of the staff members who gave a …

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Briefing on high school plan includes a few Zoom surprises

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Students in Port Townsend High School teacher Brandi Hageman’s forensics science class got a lesson from the scene of a crime last week.

Hageman was one of the staff members who gave a comprehensive overview of the Port Townsend High School Continuous Improvement Plan to the school board at its Oct. 1 meeting.

Hageman noted that remote learning sometimes has some unexpected benefits.

The day before the meeting, Hageman told the school board, she had set up a campus visit by FBI Special Agent Ted Halla.

Halla has been a guest speaker in prior years to the high school, she noted. 

But his visit this semester, planned for the day before the school board meeting, had an unexpected interruption.

“Yesterday he told me he had to be involved with SWAT down in Seattle. And I thought, ‘Oh gosh, there goes my lesson plan. Great,’” Hageman recalled.

“He said, ‘No, wait. It’s going to be OK. I’ll just Zoom in.

“And sure enough, he Zoomed in from a parking lot at some grocery store down in Seattle,” Hageman added. “And I thought, you know what? There are some blessings that we have with this distance remote learning.”

Hageman said students were very engaged during the class, and it was also good for attendance.

“It was great; the kids were awesome,” she said.

Hageman’s students during her Zoom sessions — and the school board at its meeting last week, as well — were also treated to a pair of special guests in Hageman’s broadcasts.

The guests? Mr. Bones and his wife, Peg.

“It’s October so they have come out of the closet to be here with me,” Hageman joked.

“Mr. Bones” is a full skeleton used in Hageman’s courses, and his wife is named “Peg” because she only has one leg. 

Classes at Port Townsend High School began last month for the 2020-21 school year.

School staff told the school board that approximately 120 students have been coming to the high school campus in various cohorts, and the setup seems to be working well.

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