PPS Pulse: This month's issue

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Volume 10, Issue 1: September 2014

PPS Pulse - A monthly newsletter for families in Portland Public Schools

From the superintendent

Telling the story of a growing school district

Visiting schools this first month, I have been energized to see everyone from our youngest learners to our high school seniors gear up for the academic challenges ahead. I have enjoyed hearing from our teachers, administrators and staff as they reconnect with students and have been especially thrilled to help welcome hundreds of new teachers, counselors, school secretaries, media specialists, educational assistants and other staff who are filling our new positions or replacing employees who have retired or left.

This edition of PPS Pulse tells the story of a growing school district. From the opening of the Clarendon Regional Early Learning Academy and the expansion of our Dual Language Immersion programs, to the completion of another 12 summer bond improvement projects and the installation of new athletic fields at four high schools, these accomplishments highlight the hard work of staff, and industry and community partners and speak to our growing enrollment and the most stable funding we have seen in years.

PPS Pulse also highlights a Lincoln High senior and her exceptional academic achievements, and how Roosevelt students found a powerful and constructive way to share their feelings after an incident between a classmate and police.

All of these achievements give me confidence in our ability to accelerate our progress on the three priorities that we are now focused on: Ensuring that all third graders are reading to learn, reducing out of school discipline and the disproportionality in discipline rates between white students and students of color by 50 percent, and accelerating improvement in our high school graduation and completion rates.

Thank you for supporting your students’ success and helping start the new school year with such promise.
Carole Smith
Carole Smith
Superintendent

OUR YOUNGEST LEARNERS

Clarendon early learning academy open for educating

PPS and partners cut the ribbon on the new Clarendon Regional Early Learning Academy Sept. 10, ushering in a new era in pre-kindergarten education in the school district. More

POSITIVE CHANGE

Students create forum to give classmates a voice

Students at Roosevelt turned an incident between a classmate and police, widely circulated through social media this month, into a constructive opportunity for change. More

PROVEN STRATEGY

Dual language expands to raise achievement

Portland Public Schools has expanded Dual Language Immersion programs, opening the state's first Vietnamese program last week at Roseway Heights, a Mandarin Chinese program at King and new Spanish programs as a proven strategy to raise achievement and close the achievement gap. More

SCORING BIG

Lincoln senior aces ACT and SAT

Just the thought of taking college entrance exams make most high school students sweat. But Lincoln High senior Theodora Mautz took hers with confidence, ultimately receiving perfect scores on both the ACT and SAT. More

BRINGIN' 'EM BACK

Volunteers help students not in school reconnect

More than 50 volunteers joined PPS Reconnection Services staff Saturday, Sept. 13, to knock on the doors of 175 students who are not in school -- and invite those students back. More

CONGRATULATIONS

Lopez, Stone receive high honors

Assistant Superintendent Antonio Lopez received the Excellence in Leadership Award from Latino Network this month and Susan Stone, a teacher-librarian, has been named District Librarian of the Year by the Oregon Association of School Libraries. More

SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT BOND

Year two summer work: on time, on budget

Bond-funded summer improvement work at 12 schools was completed on time and on budget to welcome students back Sept. 2 to Arleta, Beach, Boise-Eliot/Humboldt, Chief Joseph K-3 Campus, Creston, Grout, Hosford, James John, King, Lane, Vernon and Woodlawn. More

PARENT COMMUNICATIONS

Lessons from an early morning call

PPS parents know the phone call we're talking about. It was 6 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 21 when you heard: "This is John Erickson from K-103 calling on behalf of PPS to invite you to participate in Project Community Care Day." More

2014-15 BUDGET

Board invests in key learning priorities

The Portland School Board voted 6-1 Sept. 23 to hire about 40 new teachers and high school support staff, immediately spending $3.5 million of a $16.8 million budget improvement for 2014-15. More

READING

Gov. Kitzhaber launches statewide reading campaign

Gov. John Kitzhaber, State Education Chief Nancy Golden and Umpqua Bank CEO Ray Davis joined PPS Supt. Carole Smith and other dignitaries to launch a statewide reading campaign Monday, Sept. 29. More

$8.4 MILLION

Major GEAR UP grant spells students' success

The U.S. Department of Education awarded Portland Public Schools an $8.4 million GEAR UP Mobilizing for College grant, a significant infusion for the district's focus on college and career readiness and PPS' second GEAR UP grant in three years. More

FUTURE PREP

Get Ready site helps students chart path

PPS wants to make it easier for students to navigate the path to college and career. Career coordinators and school counselors teamed up with the Parent Coalition with support from the Nike School Innovation Fund to create the Get Ready for College & Career website. More

Get

Involved

COMMUNITY BUILDING

Special Education PTA 2014-15 Schedule

The Special Education PTA of Portland invites parents to attend general meetings, starting Wednesday, Oct. 1 and then Wednesday, Dec. 3. More

THINKING BIG

Quality Education Festival promotes strong school communities

Join educators, parents, students and community members for an afternoon of family fun Sunday, Oct. 19, noon to 3pm. More

PLUGGING IN

Resource Fair provides options for youth with disabilities

The PPS Community Transition Program is holding its fourth annual Transition Resource Fair Thursday, Oct. 30, noon to 6:30pm. More

SCHOOL SUPPLIES

Chevron, DonorsChoose team up to fund teacher projects

Chevron in partnership with DonorsChoose.org has contacted Portland Public Schools to promote its Fuel Your School Program, designed to help teachers and/or schools get supplies for eligible classroom projects – ranging from pencils to microscope slides and even live tarantulas for use with biology lessons. More

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PPS Pulse is a publication of the Portland Public Schools Community Involvement and Public Affairs Department.
Questions, comments or story ideas: ppspulse@pps.net or 503-916-3304.

Portland Public Schools is an equal opportunity educator and employer. Portland Public Schools - 501 North Dixon Street - Portland, Oregon 97227 - 503-916-2000 - www.pps.k12.or.us