Proposed consolidation of Humboldt and Boise-Eliot PK-8 schools

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April 2012

Portland Public Schools is proposing to move Humboldt PK-8 students to Boise-Eliot PK-8 School, 620 N. Fremont St.

The move would take effect this fall: September 2012.

Why is PPS proposing to consolidate Humboldt?

By combining Humboldt with Boise-Eliot, PPS will create a larger student body. This will allow PPS to provide a strong core program — ensuring students are ready for high school and beyond.

Is this really necessary?

PPS is proposing this consolidation — and other changes across the district — to close a $27.5 million budget gap for 2012-13. Pooling the resources of Humboldt and Boise-Eliot will allow PPS to continue meeting students’ needs.

Why Humboldt?

Humboldt has fewer than 225 students enrolled this year, making it the smallest PK-8 school in PPS. Resources are spread thin now, and additional budget cuts will make the situation worse next year. Joining with Boise-Eliot, which had 389 students this year, ensures that all students get a strong core program delivered in a more efficient way.

What can you tell me about Boise-Eliot?

Boise-Eliot, 620 N. Fremont St., has 389 students in grades PK-8. Principal Molly Chun and her leadership team create a welcoming and supportive environment with high expectations for all students. This racially and economically diverse student body posts especially high achievement in 3rd and 5th grade reading. Boise-Eliot’s SUN (Schools Uniting Neighborhoods) program provides free after-school activities and Self Enhancement Inc. offers mentoring and tutoring. Boise-Eliot eighth graders can choose to attend Jefferson High School – Middle College for Advanced Studies or Grant High School as freshmen. For more information, view Boise-Eliot's enrollment profile, visit the school's website or call the school, 503-916-6171.

Will there be transportation to Boise-Eliot?

Most of the Humboldt School neighborhood is within the one-mile Boise-Eliot walk zone. Areas outside of the one-mile zone will have bus service to Boise-Eliot. Maps and possible bus routes and times will be available soon.

Does my child have other school choices for next year?

The School Choice lottery will be open until April 13 for Humboldt students who would like to choose another school with available space. Students who transferred into Humboldt also have a guaranteed place at their neighborhood school. Enrollment & Transfer Center staff will be at upcoming school meetings to assist families with lottery and other choices. Families can also call the Enrollment & Transfer Center at 503-916-3205.

Will there be a meeting at the school to discuss the proposed consolidation?

Principal Willie Poinsette will discuss the proposal at her principal’s coffee 8:30 a.m. Friday, April 6. In addition, there will be a Humboldt family meeting 6 p.m. Tuesday, April 10, at Humboldt where families can meet Boise-Eliot Principal Molly Chun. Dinner will be provided. A tour of Boise-Eliot will soon be arranged.

How can I share my thoughts and what impact might I have?

The school district’s budget situation requires difficult and significant cuts. It is likely that this proposed consolidation will go through. We encourage you to voice your view of this proposal and also to tell school officials how a transition could be made easier, should the proposal go forward. You can testify at a budget hearing about the proposed consolidation and other cuts to schools:

  • April 9, 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., at Cleveland High School, 3400 S.E. 26th Ave.
  • April 11, 6 p.m., at Roosevelt High School, 6491 N. Central St.

Note: You must sign up to testify prior to the start time of the hearing by coming early or by calling the School Board Office in advance at 503-916-3906. You can also email a comment to the School Board.

Additional opportunities for input may be scheduled. Please check the school website for updates. Please also make sure that the school has your latest phone number, email and mailing address so that they can keep you up to date with new information. Contact Humboldt at 503-916-5468.

What happens next?

The Portland School Board is scheduled to vote on Superintendent Carole Smith’s budget proposal, which includes the consolidation of Humboldt and Boise-Eliot on May 14.

However, the Superintendent and School Board will discuss the consolidation proposal during their Monday April 16 work session in an effort to bring clarity as soon as possible. The meeting begins at 5 p.m. at 501 N. Dixon Street. It is televised live on TV-Channel 28. You can learn more about PPS’ proposed budget and, again, can check the school’s website for updates.