April 10, 2017 Superintendent’s Update to the School Board

Introduction of New Franklin School Principal

Craig Harlow was hired as the new principal at Franklin School starting July 1. Craig is currently principal at Ash Creek Elementary School in Independence and has more than 25 years of experience in education. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Eastern Washington University and a Master in Teaching degree from Seattle University. He has worked in a variety of school districts including Chehalis, Bend-LaPine, Baker, Hillsboro, and most recently Central School District. He has taught at the elementary and middle school levels and has 13 years of experience as a K-8 school principal.

Garfield Mobile Food Pantry

The Garfield Mobile Food Pantry is a great example of a successful community partnership. Last year, leaders at Garfield learned through Linn Benton Food Share that the St. Vincent de Paul food pantry in north Corvallis was looking to serve more families in the Garfield School neighborhood.

After a meeting with Principal Leigh Santy, this idea took flight and the Garfield Mobile Pantry started up in September. The pantry now distributes food to over 40 families each month. Our Health Navigator and Garfield school staff have also been regular volunteers in this successful Saturday program. Thank you to the Linn Benton Food Share, St. Vincent de Paul and all of the volunteers for providing these needed resources to support the health and well-being of our families.

Adams Elementary Wellness Award

Adams Elementary has earned a 2017 Oregon School Wellness Award. This is a recognition for outstanding school wellness policies and programs that creatively and effectively promote healthy student and staff behavior. This is the fifth time that a Corvallis school has received this award.

Activities at Adams are driven by the Adams Wellness Team. This year the team has targeted four goals including establishing an after school fitness club, supporting mindfulness and “brain breaks” in classrooms, hosting school runs, and encouraging healthy snacks in classrooms.  Each award recipient receives a $2,500 cash prize, a banner, and a certificate of recognition that will be presented at local school celebrations later this spring.

Student Competitions and Community Events

We have many extracurricular activities happening this spring. I would like to recognize the hard work and commitment of our students.

  • Franklin Elementary and Middle school teams participated in the Oregon Battle of the Books State Tournament last weekend and finished strong.
  • Cheldelin and Franklin Middle school teams and a Crescent Valley team participated at the Oregon Science Olympiad at Oregon State University this last weekend, earning several medals in various events.
  • Student teams from Lincoln and Garfield made it to the Destination Imagination state championships in Salem last weekend.
  • Robotics teams from both high schools have advanced to the world championships in Houston, Texas.

Students, parents and staff from Lincoln, joined as Team Lincoln on Saturday for the 1-mile run/walk event that was part of the Corvallis Half Marathon.  I had the opportunity to participate in the run on the OSU campus.

Thank you to all of the adults that make these activities possible, including staff, parents and volunteer coaches, mentors and advisors.

Facilities Planning Update

The Facilities Planning Committee had their third meeting in March and will meet again on April 23.

It is important to me that staff, families, and community members stay engaged and informed and we will continue to provide all materials presented to the committee on the school district website in a timely manner. Written public comment will be shared with committee members as they continue to develop a draft plan, which will be completed in June and the community will have opportunities to review and provide addition feedback and input over the summer. Direct questions about this process to Facilities and Transportation Director Kim Patten.

Golden Apple Awards

I am pleased to recognize our 2017 Golden Apple Winners this evening.  Established 21 years ago by local philanthropist Mario Pastega, the Golden Apple awards continue to be supported by the Pastega family.  Ken Pastega attended each event, as staff members were recognized. These awards give us a way to celebrate outstanding educators in our schools.


All four recipients have joined us tonight and I would like to tell you a little bit about each recipient.  Afterward, we will take a short break to enjoy some cupcakes in honor of these staff members.

Amanda Filloy Sharp

  • Amanda is a dual language immersion teacher and coordinator at Corvallis High School
  • She has been a champion of the Oregon Seal of Biliteracy and was a leader in making the seal a reality in our state
  • She models a culturally responsive and respectful classroom and she is universally respected by students, teachers and parents.
  • Amanda is a champion for diversity and equity at CHS and in the district.

Sarah Thompson

  • Sarah is an English Language Learner teacher at Lincoln Elementary
  • Her success as a teacher is evident in Lincoln’s student data and more importantly in the smiles of the kids she works with.
  • Her level of enthusiasm is unparalleled; she leads the school’s weekly assembly dances as well as a weekly Zumba Intercambrio class for the Lincoln school community.
  • Sarah’s positive impact on students will last far beyond their time spent at Lincoln Elementary.

Kathee Kunke

  • Kathee is the Operations Assistant at College Hill. According to Eric Wright, Kathee is at the heart of the creative efforts in that program.
  • Every student at College Hill knows Kathee. More importantly, she knows students by name and knows their personal story.
  • She is tireless in her willingness to support all staff members and to connect community members, volunteers, and donors to the happenings at College Hill.
  • Kathee’s efforts create a multiplier effect at College Hill, giving all other staff more time and energy to focus on students.

Sheila Mulligan

  • Sheila is a 6th grade math teacher at Cheldelin Middle School.
  • She has a deep knowledge of the subject and a passion for teaching math that comes through every day in her classroom.
  • She creates an environment where students are encouraged to take risks. She is diligent about informing parents about how their student is progressing, and often makes phone calls during the evening hours.
  • Sheila creates a “magical” mathematical environment at Cheldelin both in her classroom and during the after school extended learning time.

These four educators go the extra mile for students every day. They inspire their students and energize their co-workers. I am pleased to recognize their contributions this evening. Please join me as we honor the 2017 Golden Apple winners Amanda Filloy Sharp, Sarah Thompson, Kathee Kunke, and Sheila Mulligan.

To contact Superintendent Noss, call 541-757-5841 or send an e-mail to julie.catala@corvallis.k12.or.us
Learn more about school district leadership here.