The Rotary Club of Lakewood has presented the Clover Park School District with a check for $28,000 to support the implementation of the International Baccalaureate Programme at the General Harrison Academy in the district.
The Rotary Club pledged the contribution ‚Äì plus an additional $120,000 over the next four years ‚Äì as an inducement for the district to upgrade its education program, according to Michael McGowan, project chairman for the Rotary Club.
In a letter to CPSD Superintendent Debbie LeBeau, McGowan and club president Joel Feldman declared ‚ÄúThe Rotary Club of Lakewood and the citizens of Lakewood are very proud of your decision to install the International Baccalaureate Programme and make it available to the students of our community.
‚ÄúLakewood Rotary plans to follow the implementation and success of this program and will help the Clover Park School District in any way you see acceptable,‚Äù the two Rotary club leaders wrote.
Organized in 1956, the Lakewood Rotary Club has established itself as a leading force in community programs and improvements. The 125-member club has raised funds for such varied community efforts as a renal dialysis center, YMCA branch, local hospital, Boys & Girls Club, playground at Ft. Steilacoom Park and numerous other projects, large and small.
The club started its campaign to encourage the school system to upgrade its education programs a couple years ago after hearing complaints about the status of the district. The club sponsored meetings for school administrators, teachers and community members to learn about the International Baccalaureate Programme. The club pledged $148,000 to the district to fund the start-up costs and ultimately the school board agreed to the idea. The $28,000 check is the first of five annual payments.
The International Baccalaureate Programme is an international education system aimed at raising the education level of all students in a district. Standards for classes are set internationally. A number of districts in the Puget Sound area have been accepted for the program and as a result have seen students transfer in from other areas.