Vashon Island School District
The newly remodeled Vashon Island High School is holding an open house on Jan. 5 from 1 to 4 pm.

Vashon Island High school open house set for Jan. 5; 150 students commute daily to the school by ferry

For many years students from West Seattle (and Tacoma and elsewhere) have commuted to their high school.

Not here on the peninsula but across Puget Sound to Vashon Island. That School District announced an open house event today, set to take place on Jan. 5 from 1 to 4 pm. There will beother opening events and tours throughout the winter and spring.

The School District shared the news in a press release:

The new Vashon Island High School will open its doors to the public on January 5, 2014 from 1:00-4:00 p.m. Vashon Island School District welcomes the public to tour the building and thanks the Vashon community for supporting the 2011 capital bond that funded the construction. During the open house, students will guide tours, and docents will be strategically placed to elaborate on significant building features and answer questions. Musicians of all ages will perform in the foyer throughout the event.

Students will start school in the new building on January 6th, and on January 9th, from 1:45-4:00 p.m., the Associated Student Body (ASB) will host a Demolition Carnival. Proceeds from the event will help subsidize extracurricular activities and provide assistance to students who need financial aid. More than 15 clubs and sports teams will host booths, coaxing attendees to participate in activities ranging from demolishing walls to harvesting building artifacts. More adventurous attendees can purchase tickets to ride on a huge excavator in mid-January as it tears down part of the old high school.

The district will lead regular tours of the new high school throughout the winter and spring. For tour times, go to

In May, after the older buildings are demolished and the grounds are landscaped, the district will invite the community and local officials to participate in a dedication ceremony. The date of that event is still to be determined.

A high school that represents Vashon

The high school building, designed by Integrus Architecture and built by Skanska USA, is a reflection of the community for which it was built. Robust and solidly constructed, it was designed with flexibility in mind so that it can adapt to changes in educational techniques and instruction. “Porosity” is the word the architects use to describe the marriage of the outdoors with the interior. The large windows invite sunlight and verdant views throughout, and the school’s common area and halls are lined with locally harvested and milled wood from the school’s forest, giving the interior warmth and a connection with its natural surroundings.

The building is rich with environmentally sustainable features including rainwater harvesting and reuse, an air water heap pump heating system, operable windows for ventilation, photovoltaic panels, automatic daylight harvesting light control system, LED lighting, added wall and roof insulation, and a rain-water garden.

Designed for community use, the school boasts a 260-seat theater with a spacious lobby, a family friendly restroom, improved sight lines and acoustics, and backstage dressing rooms with toilet facilities. The lower floor of the building can serve as a community shelter and kitchen with provisions to connect to the fire department’s emergency generator.

“The staff can’t wait to show off the new high school to the community, and to introduce the students to such a beautiful and inspiring learning environment,” says Principal, Danny Rock.

Vashon Island High School (VHS) is a public high school located on Vashon Island, Washington. Vashon Island High School is the only high school to serve the island. VHS runs 9th through 12th grade. The school has two language courses available: Japanese and Spanish. VHS puts on three plays a year within the three drama classes; Theater Arts I, II and Musical Theater. The school's athletic mascot is the Pirates. Currently VHS has an enrollment of 518 students and 44 faculty and staff. The Principal of VHS is Danny Rock and the assistant principal is Dr. Stephanie Spencer. Despite being accessible only by ferries, VHS has a large number of off-island commuter students who come from West Seattle, the Kitsap Peninsula and Tacoma.

The high school address is:
20120 Vashon Hwy SW, Vashon WA 98070
Tel: (206) 463-9171

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