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Join Waitlist for Fall 2023

The application period to enter our lottery has closed, but students will be added to our waitlist in the order the application is received. Gibson Ek is an innovative choice public high school open to students living in the Issaquah School District interested in a student-driven, project-based educational model. Any ISD eighth grader may apply. Read more

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By the Numbers



Our small student body in grades 9-12 reflects a wide diversity of goals, from college to entrepreneurship to careers in a trade or the arts.



Hundreds of working professionals have volunteered to mentor our students through on-site internships and remote career-related projects.


Competency Areas

With no traditional classes or grades, students learn through self-directed projects, incorporating competencies in reading, writing, science, social studies and math.


Innovation Spaces

“Exploration time” allows students to dive hands-on into 3-D printing, visual arts, science, woodworking, music and audio recording, cooking, digital media, gardening, & more.

Image shows the building of Gibson Ek High School

School Highlights & Programs

Gibson Ek students commit to a personal vision through authentic new learning that empowers them to contribute their knowledge and skills to meaningfully influence the school and community.

Principal Julia Bamba

Meet Principal Julia Bamba!

Hi, Gibson Ek families! Two of my favorite things about being a principal are our students and working with my amazing staff team. Our Gibson Ek staff care so much about our students and work tirelessly every day to bring care, energy, and creativity to the work we do at Gibson Ek. A few fun facts about me: I love reggae music, and I could eat chips and salsa forever. In my sophomore year of college, I left for a year to work construction as a roller operator. I made enough money to pay for the last two years of college, and I bought a 1983 Volvo station wagon! 


Project-Based Model

Gibson Ek High School is a choice school open to any Issaquah School District student looking for a more independent, project-based approach to learning. With no traditional classes or grades, Gibson Ek students learn through self-directed projects, using the design thinking process to guide their work. Projects incorporate reading, writing, science, social studies and math along the way. Certificated teachers guide and assess students as they work independently. As a Big Picture school, we develop students to live lives of their own design, supported by caring mentors and equitable opportunities to achieve their greatest potential. Students graduate from Gibson Ek with the skills, knowledge and qualities necessary to be activists in their world.

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Learning Through Internship

Learning Through Internship

Gibson Ek High School students learn from working professionals whose careers match the students’ interests. Mentors have the opportunity to teach a student about the job, coach soft skills, and make a lifelong impact on a teen. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, Gibson Ek students are mentored by adult professionals, either in-person at a workplace or remotely while the student completes a project from home. Well over 100 volunteers mentor our students, from local shop owners to professionals across the country and the world.

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