Nature keeps repeating itself

Editor's Note/Pat Jenkins

So what have we learned from the latest mini-armageddon? The main lesson is an old one: That when it comes to rain and flooding, nature calls the shots.

Areas that have been swamped in the past were swamped again, and will be when the next non-stop cloudbuster strikes – possibly this winter or the ensuing spring.

Compared to our brethren in nearby King County communities and other parts of western Washington, the Covington, Maple Valley and Black Diamond areas got off relatively easy this time – though you might have trouble convincing the hardy but beleagured souls around the Cedar River.

But there was a sense of familiarity and inevitability as the water rose in the past week. And it’s becoming more likely that you can plan on it being ever thus, despite the best efforts of government to shore up river levees, control flood zones and get people out of harm’s way. Nature – with an unwelcome assist from man’s developments that continually add to the strain on natural and manmade water runoff systems – isn’t going to stop producing weather that translates to flood conditions.

• As someone who once cracked a glass ceiling by becoming the first male president of PTA in the roughly 60-year history of an elementary school, I got something extra out of the Reporter’s front-page article in the Jan. 9 edition.

Staff writer Kris Hill chronicled the efforts of current PTA leaders at Jenkins Creek (no relation) Elementary School to grow their unit and vanquish some stereotypes about the venerable Parent Teacher Association at the grassroots level.

At some schools wherever you go, PTA is a small knot of volunteers. Bless their hearts, they’re dedicated but frequently a tad exclusionary. Maybe it’s justified because of a lack of participation by other parents. But as noted by Patti Melton, one of the Jenkins Creek PTA officers, “There’s the stereotypical PTA that’s a big clique. We’re not like that. We’ll take anyone.”

Membership at Jenkins Creek is rising, which is great news. A key to successful schools is parental involvement. And PTA, done right, can help make that happen.

Publisher/editor Pat Jenkins can be reached at (425) 432-1209 (extension 1050) and