Plumbing Issues Fixed
Plumbers have been working hard for the last two evenings late into the night to fix our cafeteria plumbing issues. It is now fixed and regular school lunches will be provided starting Monday.
UPDATED AM BUS ROUTE TIMES
8:14am at NE 42nd and NE Emerson
8:16am at NE 42nd and NE Wygant
8:18am at NE 39th and NE Prescott
Welcome to our New Staff
I'm back and can't wait to reconnect! My name is Gina Azzaro-Budak and I'll be teaching 4th grade. Although this is my first year as a classroom teacher, I have a history working at Vernon. Students and staff know me as Ms. Gina. From 2002-2011, I coordinated Vernon's SMART (Start Making A Reader Today) Program. Literacy continues to be my passion. Eventually I wanted my own classroom and took the next steps to get licensed. I graduated from Concordia's MAT program in 2012. I spent my practicum at Vernon in a 4/5 grade classroom with a fabulous mentor teacher, Ms. Schachner! For the past 2 years I've been subbing in PPS with a concentration at Sabin K-8. I'm originally from the Midwest but my family and I have lived in NE Portland for 25 years. My husband Martin and I have two boys who are PPS Japanese Magnate Program graduates. My eldest, Nick, just graduated from Whitman College with an Asian Studies major. He just left to teach English in Xi'an, China for a year at NW Polytechnical University. Our youngest son, Vincent is a sophomore at Willamette University in Salem. He is a vocal musician pursuing a communications degree. I look forward to growing and learning with the Vernon Community. Thanks for your support!
Ms. Gina, 4th Grade Teacher
My name is Elizabeth Docken and I am thrilled to be joining Vernon Elementary as the new Kindergarten teacher. I have been teaching for eleven years at the elementary level, and absolutely love each and every day spent with students who are curious, creative, and eager to learn. I have had the wonderful opportunity to teach locally, in Washington and Oregon, as well as in Hawaii and Japan. While I grew up north of Seattle and have family scattered throughout the Northwest, I have been in Portland for three years now and this is home. Outside of the classroom, I cherish my time with family and friends - sharing meals and telling stories. I enjoy reading, walking, and playing games. I am passionate about teaching and learning, especially guiding students to become readers, writers, and thinkers. I am excited to be teaching Kindergarten here at Vernon!
Elizabeth Docken, Kindergarten Teacher
Greetings! My name is Dan Blumhardt and I am so happy to be a part of the team at Vernon School as the School Counselor! It is going to be fantastic working with the staff, students, families, and community here! The best part of my job is having the opportunity to partner with so great people towards the great goal of helping every student achieve success. As part of this team, I will give my best to collaborate with you, and provide the personal, social, emotional, academic, and career support needed for student success. I grew up in the Midwest, but since coming to Oregon 13 years ago, I can’t imagine being anywhere else. I received my Masters Degree in School Counseling from Portland State University, and have had many rewarding years of excellent opportunities to partner with parents, students, and the community in schools and non-profit organizations.
Dan Blumhardt, Counselor
Hello Vernon!! My name is Jennifer "JP" LeBoutillier. I go by JP and students call me Ms. JP. I have been an EA at James John School for the past 2 years. I have two boys that attend 1st and 4th grades at James John. We are an active family. My husband, sons and I love exploring the natural areas of Oregon and Washington by canoe, by foot and by bike! In addition to raising my family and working for PPS, I am a volunteer METRO Naturalist, I have worked as a science instructor and programs manager for science museums and am a collector of rocks, nests, bones, plants and more! I am excited to join the Vernon Owls!
Ms. JP, Reading Educational Assistant
My name is Marie McMahon and I am excited to teach 4th grade! I grew up in Portland, Oregon and then decided to move to Minnesota for college. After graduating, I taught 4th grade in MN for two years. I then decided I wanted to teach overseas, so I moved to Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. I lived in Abu Dhabi for one year and taught 3rd grade in an American International School with an IB Program. I love traveling, being outdoors, and staying active. I loved my time overseas, but am enjoying being back in the beautiful Pacific Northwest where my family is. I am looking forward to being a part of the Vernon Community this year.
Marie McMahon, 4th Grade Teacher
Hello all! My name is Christina Curran (Ms. Curran) and I am very excited to become a part of the Vernon Elementary community. I originally hail from the the East Coast and received a Master's Degree in Special Education and English Education from Fordham University. Since then, I have worked as a resource room teacher for middle schoolers and a substitute teacher. I specialize in teaching and providing learning supports for Language Arts. For me, one of the best things about being an educator is having the ability to make the curriculum accessible and engaging for all students.
In my free time, I like to exercise my duties as a recent transplant by exploring Portland by bike. I also love to read, spend time with my kitty, Cous Cous, find sunshine and cook vegetables.
I look forward to teaching and learning with all of you during this upcoming school year!
Christina Curran, Special Education Teacher
Hello Vernon School! I'm excited to be a part of Vernon and teach Art to the community. I have been an educator in PPS for the past 15 years teaching all grade levels 1st-8th grade including Art and Wellness. I plan on bringing in art instruction, music, singing and movement into the classroom. When I'm not teaching, I spend lots of time in nature, hiking, dancing, singing and spending time with family.
“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” – Maya Angelou
Ashley Collins, Art Teacher
My name is Matthew Thompson and I started to teach Physical Education in 2000. While I have experience that ranges from the k-10th grade level, most of my experience has been teaching 4th-8th graders. I also have a strong history in after-school programs and athletics as well.
I was born in Los Angeles and I was raised in Orange County, Ca. I relocated to the Great Northwest in 2012 and I am extremely excited to be a part of the Vernon community. As one of your child's educators I want to assure you that I will be working hard to ensure progress on many levels, which include physical, social, mental, as well as emotional. Your child will be safe, treated with respect, and challenged each and every day while in my class. With that said, we are also going to have tons of fun learning about ourselves, our classmates, and our future as we march towards not just graduation and college entrance, but as we march towards a more healthy & active lifestyle as well.
I hold a BS in Kinesiology, a Master's of Education with a focus on Cross-Cultural Education, and I am fully licensed to teach in Oregon. In addition to that, I am also a graduate student at Concordia University.
I love dogs, Mexican food, going to the beach, working in the yard at my house, collaborating with other educators, and I simply love new experiences and meeting new people as I make my way through life. I am not just a citizen of the Great Northwest, but I am a citizen of the world. I can't wait to get started and I can't wait to meet you on campus.
Matthew Thompson, PE Teacher
Hello, I am Andrea Dole Church, students call me Ms. DC. I grew up in NE Portland then attended the University of Oregon for my undergraduate degree and George Fox University for my Master of Arts in Teaching. I have been involved as an educator ever since, teaching middle school for a couple years, as a health educator at a medical clinic in Illinois, as a parent volunteer and art docent at my children's school, a substitute teacher and most recently a kindergarten Educational Assistant. I have three children; Dominic is in 8th grade, Jocelyn in 5th grade and Vincent in 4th grade. We moved to NE Portland from California three years ago and are truly loving being here. This summer we added a puppy named Juniper to our family. I look forward to working with the students at Vernon and continuing to grow as an educator as I complete my reading endorsement this school year.
Ms. Andrea Dole Church, Reading Educational Assistant
Additional Administrative Reminders
Vernon Communication Commitment
Parents and teachers collaborating is very important to us here at Vernon. We wanted to make you aware of the guidelines we are committed to complying with as a staff:
- If a parent has a question or concern about class, we encourage you to contact your classroom teacher first.
- Teachers will respond to your email, note or phone call within 24-48 hours.
- Please check with teachers as to which method might be quicker for them to answer your communication and please make sure we have your updated information.
- If you have a question or concern for the administration, we encourage you to call, email, or send a note and we will responsed within 48-72 hours, unless it is a matter of urgency.
School Goal: Great Attendance and Arriving to School on Time
Second Quarter and Fourth Quarter we will be using a Attendance Reward Program for K-5th grades. Each student that has perfect attendance and no tardies will receive a informational card about an animal from India. Students will also be entered into a weekly drawing for a stuffed animal. At the end of 9 weeks we will have a drawing for all students that have had perfect attendance for 9 weeks for large stuffed animals.
Just a quick repost of attendance reminders:
- The 8:45 Bell. This is when instruction begins. Please make sure that your morning routine allows for plenty of time to get ready and to get here by 8:35.
- We have Monday announcements right after the 8:45 bell rings. We will announce birthdays, weather reports, and Principal's drawings.
Vernon School has adopted the Rotary's Guide to Relationships.
We use the 4 Way Test when making decisions.
- Is it the TRUTH?
- Is it FAIR to all concerned?
- Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
- Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?