MSHS Marching Band – What a Start!

Last spring, just before leaving for summer break, the Mead Transportation Department let me in on a little secret: our band was getting a new bus.

While this may not seem like a big deal to some, the years of wear and tear on the original “Red Baron” were starting to become more evident. Now, after a fresh paint job and modifications, our hard-working band students and staff members will roll to their competitions in style!

Check out the video of the bus being displayed via this link: CLICK HERE.

Additionally, check out our marching band at the University High School preview showcase on Saturday, September 24th!

Congratulations, Scott Jones, James Layman and all of our talented musicians. . . you deserve it!

Go ‘Cats!



The First Day

The first day.

For those who know me well, it’s no secret that I love my job. It’s not an overstatement, it’s the truth. “Love” captures how I feel about the community I serve, the students I have the good fortune to meet and know and the unbelievably talented people I watch work magic in classrooms each day. Mt. Spokane High School is a special place, and today reminded me of this truth.

Helping frightened and self-conscious 9th grade students with lockers to discussing college plans with seniors to mucking through the process of schedule changes, life in a high school has never been better. That’s what I see.

When people talk about “those teenagers” or “those high school kids” in a negative way, I typically cut them off. Then I invite them to where I work. We’re not perfect, we have our flaws, but I’m proud to be a part of Mt. Spokane High School.

What a great first day.

Go ‘Cats.




Hello, Summer!

And. . . it’s summer!

It’s hard to believe that school has almost been out for a month. As I glanced at the calendar this morning, mid-July is almost upon us and activity is once again bustling at Mt. Spokane.

Today I was greeted by the sounds of our drumline, marching band and color guard as they begin the process of preparing for another memorable year. Then, after walking through a bright and quiet commons, the noise that accompanies student/athletes lifting weights quickly welcomed me upstairs to the weight room. Truly, I am in awe of the dedication that so many of our students, advisors and coaches have to MSHS and their respective programs. . . I am thankful.

Thus far, this summer has been a difficult one for me to embrace. The tragic accident involving two of our students continues to weigh on my thoughts, and I’m hopeful that all those impacted in our community continue to reach out and seek help. Thank you to everyone in and around Mt. Spokane for supporting the Roach and Balbi families as I know they have felt your thoughts and prayers.

Now, as we all take this extended time away, I wish everyone the best for memorable times spent with family and friends. 2016-17 is going to be a GREAT year at Mt. Spokane, but taking some time to reflect and prepare is definitely needed until we’re all back together on Tuesday, September 6th.

I’m very thankful to serve in the position I do at MSHS. I know I’m the lucky one.

As always, go ‘Cats!

“Mr. Nelson”


2015-16 – Thank You!

I am fortunate.

Mt. Spokane High School is a wonderful place due to the people who call themselves part of our community. After graduation and final exams have concluded, I appreciate having time to reflect, and thank, those who made our year a memorable one. Here goes:

* Thank you to our families who support their students and, therefore, our school. I am thankful to work in a community that values education. Thanks for entrusting your child to our care each day. This is an awesome responsibility that I don’t take lightly. Thank you.

* Thank you to our talented teachers who build relationships, plan lessons, collaborate thoughtfully and truly embody the notion of “ALL IN” each day. You each inspire me to do my job in a better, more intentional way. Thank you.

* Thank you to our dedicated classified employees who work within our offices and classrooms, kitchen and custodian runs. You are each appreciated and valued. Thank you for caring about our students, staff and school! Thank you.

* Thank you to our directors, advisors and coaches. The opportunities our students have to get involved are numerous, and these are only possible because of your dedication and care. Thank you.

* Thank you to the people I work most closely with in our offices. We have incredibly sincere counselors and administrators who care about Mt. Spokane and all who claim this place. I know I am the lucky one. Thank you.

Here’s to a safe and memorable summer! While I look forward to some time away, I’m excited for what is in store during the 2016-17 school year. See you in September!

As always – Go ‘Cats!

With sincere appreciation,

“Mr. Nelson”


Jared Floe – Wildcat Rodeo!

Congratulations, Jared Floe!

MSHS graduate Jared Floe won the Washington State High school Rodeo Title for the 2015/2016 Season in Bareback Riding. He placed 3rd in trap shooting and 5th in Saddle Bronc Riding. Jared is now joining Team Washington and will be representing our state at Nationals in Gillette, Wyoming in July this summer.


Jared will attend EWU in the fall where he will continue his rodeo career while studying engineering.  Congratulations, Jared, we are proud!

Go ‘Cats!  Go Eagles!

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Senior Movie Night

One week.  That’s it.  One week.

To celebrate their final full Thursday in high school, the Class of 2016 decided to start a new tradition: Senior Movie Night.

Taking to the courtyard, seniors arrived with blankets, hammocks, lawn chairs and food to spend an evening together.  What a great way to spend a Thursday night!

Thanks to our ASB for supporting this event!

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Caring ‘Cats – Benefit Concert

Tuesday night was an evening to give back.

Organized by MSHS students, a benefit concert was held to support Mt. Spokane teacher and golf coach Eleen Northcutt as she continues to battle cancer.  Those who attended were treated to a night of great music for a worthy cause.

Thanks to all those who organized and attended!

Go ‘Cats!

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Senior Campout in the Courtyard

The first day of June.  Time for a Senior Campout.

After arriving at school I noticed our courtyard looked differently than most Wednesday mornings. As part of their final push towards graduation, a few creative twelfth-grade students decided to pitch some tents and hang some hammocks.

Here are some pictures. What a great senior class!

Go ‘Cats!





















Senior Award Night – Congratulations!

The Class of 2016 has much to celebrate!

Last week, students were honored by each academic department and in groups ranging from National Honor Society members to Running Start students to our Valedictorians.

Congratulations to all of our students who were recognized!  We are proud!

Go ‘Cats!

Hannah Bowles – One Cool ‘Cat

Hannah Bowles has had quite a ride during her four years in high school.

A level 10 gymnast, Hannah has dedicated hours to the sport she loves. While the balancing act between school and gymnastics wasn’t always easy, she found a way to achieve at each and every turn. Here are some highlights from my conversation with a remarkable MSHS student/athlete:

Favorite Memories
* Hannah placed in the top 10 (All Around) at the Regional Competition held at Beasley Coliseum in Pullman, Washington.

* “My most memorable meet was the level 9 Western Championships. I earned 14th in All Around and 7th on vault. I held first place for the majority of the competition. . . it was an awesome memory.”

* Qualified for the National Championships two years in a row. . . what an amazing accomplishment!

* Balancing homework and gymnastics wasn’t always easy. Hannah trained from 4:00pm to 9:00pm on most weeknights after attending school all day. During her junior year, Hannah remembered staying up until midnight. With meets out of town from January through May, many weeks found her missing a Monday or Friday for travel purposes. With all this being said, Hannah has absolutely no regrets!

The Future
Hannah plans to attend Eastern Washington University in the fall. She will begin giving back to the gymnastics community by coaching level 3 “team” gymnastics at Dynamic. Although the University of Wisconsin-Lacrosse made contact with Hannah and offered her a spot within their gymnastics program, she felt like EWU was simply a better fit. Earning a $3000.00 renewable scholarship doesn’t hurt either!

Like many seniors, Hannah ended our discussion by stating that she will miss her friends as they will all be going their separate ways. Thankfully, Hannah will not be soon forgotten based upon the legacy of hard work and kindness she has left at Mt. Spokane.

Congratulations, Hannah!

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