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Marysville baby has surgery to correct heart defects BY KIRK BOXLEITNER firstname.lastname@example.org
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SEE SPENCER, PAGE 2
Spencer Norton is held by his sister Olivia for the first time at Seattle Children’s Hospital.
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Tulalip Tribal Chair Mel Sheldon Jr. and Vice Chair Deborah Parker discuss what their community can do to aid the Marysville School District’s mission on Feb. 24.
TULALIP — Shoring up the struggling students of the Marysville School District was a recurring theme among the many and varied subjects discussed during the Monday, Feb. 24, joint meeting of the respective boards of directors of the Marysville School District and the Tulalip Tribes. Marysville School Board Vice President Chris Nation touted incoming interim special education services directors Dave Gow and Dr. Bob Gose as experienced profes-
sionals who have successfully turned around other school districts’ special education programs. “I don’t know how much they’ll be able to fix in six months, but they can develop the department so that pieces will be in place for our new permanent directors,” Nation said. “We’re also elevating those positions to executive directors, so they’ll be part of the district’s cabinet,” MSD Superintendent Dr. Becky Berg said. “Our concern is, what can we be doing to offer more
services to these students?” Tulalip Tribal Board Chair Mel Sheldon Jr. asked. “The systems we had in place were not making effective use of all of our partnerships,” Nation said. Berg’s coffees with community members were cited by members of both boards as a successful venue for allowing parents to discuss their concerns in a more informal setting. MSD Assist ant Superintendent Ray Houser followed this conversation SEE BOARDS, PAGE 2
MARYSVILLE — Spencer Norton isn’t even a year old yet, and he’s already been fighting for his life. The infant was born to Amy and Scott Norton of Marysville on Nov. 8 of last year, and while other local families were celebrating the Seahawks heading to the Super Bowl, Spencer was heading to Seattle Children’s Hospital due to a trio of undiagnosed congenital heart defects — transposition of the two great arteries of the heart, coarctation of the aorta and ventricle septal defect — that are referred to as Tausig–Bing syndrome in the extremely rare instances when all three occur together.
“Because his two great arteries were transposed, they were pumping unoxygenated blood into his body,” Amy Norton said. “The only reason he survived was because he also had that ventricle septal defect, which was basically a large hole next to his aorta, that allowed his oxygenated and un-oxygenated blood to mix.” The Nortons had taken all the prescribed steps for carrying, delivering and caring for Spencer, who appeared perfectly healthy and displayed normal growth patterns for the first couple of months of his life. Although Spencer began experiencing some congestion, it seemed to Amy and Scott as though