Thank you to the Herald for helping save Schmitz Park Elementary School

On behalf of the Schmitz family of West Seattle, we want to thank the West Seattle Herald and reporter Ty Swenson for the outstanding coverage given by your newspaper to the possible closure of Schmitz Park School by the Seattle School District in 2015. We believe your newspaper coverage is largely responsible for saving the Schmitz Park School site from being closed or sold off by the school district.

Your weekly newspaper played an instrumental role in drawing attention to the plans of the Seattle School District regarding its BEX IV construction levy and the fight the Schmitz family was waging. We were waging a battle to remind the school district that the Schmitz family deeded seven acres of land to the school district for $1.00 fifty years ago in order to build Schmitz Park School. It seems the school district had forgotten about this........and they were planning to abandon Schmitz Park, lease it out, or sell it off.

The Seattle School District has now decided to retain the Schmitz Park School site for future use as an elementary school, while building a new grade school on the Genesee Hill school property. However, all of this depends on a nearly $700 million construction levy being passed by voters next February.

King County Executive Dow Constantine played a huge role in saving Schmitz Park School, as did our local School Board representative Martha McLaren, so special thanks should be sent their way as well. Many other members of the community joined in support of this effort.

We are writing this letter to say: there is simply no substitute for a local weekly newspaper, period! Your Robinson West Seattle Herald helped save the Schmitz Park School site for future generations of children in West Seattle. We simply could not have done it without you. Thank you.

Vicki Schmitz Block
Dietrich Schmitz

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