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Karen Johnson - Director of ELA, Social Studies, and Library Programs

Karen Johnson holding her award from the NTPS School Board The Board of Directors recently recognized Karen Johnson, Director of English Language Arts/Social Studies/Library Programs, for her leadership around literacy and the impact during COVID-19.

“During the pandemic we have worked hard as a district to ensure every child has the tools they need to succeed. We ensured Chromebooks and low-cost internet, had breakfast and lunches delivered, provided centralized school supplies, lowered ASB fees and waived sports fees to get students more engaged in schools,” said Board President Gretchen Maliska, before announcing the award during the online School Board meeting on February 9. “However, the best most lasting affect we can on ANY family, regardless of their demographic, and the very best way to break the cycle of poverty is LITERACY.”

She went on to commend – and surprise -- former Evergreen Forest Elementary principal Karen Johnson with the quarterly “Outstanding Service to NTPS” award from the School Board.  

“Karen has done a superb job modernizing our elementary libraries to make sure our book selection reflects the diverse cultures and interests of all of our students,” Maliska said. “She also does an amazing job  partnering with the Timberland Regional Library on projects such as Lacey Loves to Read.” Johnson also serves on the Board of Directors for the South Sound Reading Foundation.

“Literacy is the heart of learning. If you can’t read the directions on the test, you cannot pass it. If you cannot read a job application, you cannot be employed. Literacy lifts student up!” Maliska said. “By ensuring high quality ELA , library materials, and current subject matter that is welcoming to all students, Karen sets the stage for excited engaged life-long readers who can achieve their dreams!”

Johnson was floored. “What an honor!” she exclaimed. “We are a top-notch district. I love what I do because I love the district and the people I work with!”