Superintendent’s Update

Shared with the Corvallis School Board during the December 19, 2019 meeting

Student Success Act Update

Phase I of developing a plan for our district included a needs assessment survey this fall. We received input from 440 parents, staff, and students with more than 5,000 comments. We are working to analyze the responses and provide a summary that will be used in the next phase of this work. The District planning team will begin Phase 2 this month. The team will take a comprehensive look at the multi-year strategic financial plan, Board Goals, student achievement data, as well as the results of the community needs assessment survey. A draft Student Investment Account plan will be presented for a second round of community feedback in February. The plan is expected to be presented to the School Board for final adoption this spring.

Boundary Review

Boundary Review Task Force members were selected from an applicant pool of 32 parents and guardians. Thank you to Sarah Finger McDonald for serving as the school board liaison to the task force.  The group has met two times this month and will have five more meetings. This week the group was provided with a starting map to begin the process of reviewing attendance areas and current enrollment patterns. Each time they meet, they will have an opportunity to develop different scenarios to determine how best to balance enrollment, primarily at our middle schools.

The community and district parents and guardians are invited to attend one or both open house events to provide input to the task force. Open House #1 will be held on January 21, 2019, from 6:00 – 8:00 pm at Cheldelin Middle School and Open House #2 will be held on February 18, 2020, from 6:00 – 8:00 pm at Linus Pauling Middle School.

Information from the meetings will be published to the Boundary Review page on the district website within three days of the task force meetings.

Mid-Valley STEM-CTE Hub

Recently I was asked to participate as a board member of the Mid-Valley Mid-Coast STEM-CTE Hub.  The STEM-CTE Hub has a district difference between the other STEM Hubs across the state.  The CTE component of the STEM hub is unique to our area. The goal is to create a collaborative including both STEM and CTE.  Pipeline, a project by Albany Chamber of Commerce, is also connected to our regional STEM Hub which also makes our Hub unique.

The STEM-CTE Hub is in the process of posting a position for a director to build thriving communities through strategic alignment of business, education and the community.  This position and the overall Hub is supported through a grant from the Oregon Department of Education and through Pipeline partners.

Joint Meeting with the School Board and Corvallis Public Schools Foundation Board

I felt that our first joint work session between the Corvallis School Board and Corvallis Public Schools Foundation board was a success.  I hope you all feel the same.  Based on the feedback provided, I feel this is an annual practice that should continue.  Increasing the understanding and alignment between the two groups increases access to services and learning opportunities for our students.

A special thank you to Sami Al-AbdRabbuh, Mike Sheets, Liv Gifford and Julie Catala for coordinating the work session and to Eric Wright, Chris Hawkins, Sarah Devine, Amy Lesan and Joe Leykam for presenting on current programs in our district.

The Foundation’s annual Hands Across Corvallis Breakfast is coming up on January 30. If you would like to attend, but do not yet have a seat, please contact Sami Al-AbdRabbuh who is the school board liaison to the Foundation.

Planning for Winter Weather Delays and Closures

We have several scheduled make up days built into our school year calendar to make sure we are meeting instructional time requirements. We were fortunate this year to have milder weather leading up to Winter Break and we had no school delays or closures.

The decision to delay or cancel school is based on safety considerations including student drivers, student access to bus stops, students walking to/from school and all other aspects of transportation of students to school. We also consider the suitability of our facilities for occupation as well as the condition of local infrastructure. Our staff and families are notified of school delays and cancellations as soon as possible through our mass notification auto-dialer system. A text-notification option was added for staff and families this year.

Student Project Highlight - Empty Bowls Project

There are a number of philanthropic activities that take place throughout the school district.  One that I would like to highlight is the empty bowl project at Crescent Valley.  The Empty Bowl project is a ceramics project in which students and staff make bowls in the CV ceramics studio and sell them to support those in need.  The empty bowl represents community need and all of the funds raised go to the Linn Benton Food Share.  This project is a great way to support our community. Thank you to CV art teacher Keith Moses for leading this effort.