Tuesday, February 26, 2013

School Board agrees to merge Ockley Green, Chief Joseph

The Portland Tribune ran an article covering Carole Smith's recommendation and the board's decision.

North Portland Magnet Program To End But Schools Will Stay Open

Board members for Portland Public Schools agreed Monday night to close a magnet program in North Portland. But they stopped short of closing a school building, as first recommended by staff and the superintendent.
Ockly Green
Sloan Chambers / OPB
Ockly Green
The arts and technology magnet program at Ockley Green will close at the end of this school year, under the board's resolution.
The district has been struggling for months with how to balance out school enrollments in North Portland.  

Click here to read the rest of the article that was published on the OPB site.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Portland School Board approves merger of Chief Joseph and Ockley Green schools

Nicole Dungca did it again over on Oregon Live (for The Oregonian):

Two North Portland schools will merge to operate as one school on two campuses under a plan approved Monday night by the Portland School Board. 
Next year, the district will shut down Ockley Green's magnet program and combine the school with growing Chief Joseph Elementary. With three fewer grades, Chief Joseph educates nearly double Ockley Green's enrollment of 240 students. 
Superintendent Carole Smith’s proposal will keep open all buildings in the Jefferson High School cluster, in response to parents who had packed meetings for months to decry any closures. Board members voted 6-0 Monday to approve the plan, with board member Trudy Sargent absent.

You can read her article in it's entirety here.

Enrollment Is Changing In NE Portland Schools

Allison Frost did an episode of Think Out Loud for OPB regarding enrollment balancing in the Jefferson Cluster. Click here to read more.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

CJBB & CJPTA Joint Statement to the Board

The statement below was developed by the Chief Joe Bucket Brigade in conjunction with the Chief Joe PTA in response to Superintendent Smith's Jefferson Cluster Enrollment Balancing proposal. As always, we welcome your comments and feedback, and are thankful for the opportunity to participate in the EB process.

Kind Regards, 

Kelly, Becca, the CJBB, and the PTA

Joint Statement to the Board
Chief Joseph Elementary Bucket Brigade and PTA

We respectfully request that the following amendments be added when considering Superintendent Smith’s current proposal as it pertains to the merging of Chief Joseph and Ockley Green into a dual campus. Thank you for your consideration.

  • Promote Stability:
    • Ensure the dual campus K-8 approach accommodates enrollment growth at all grade levels.
    • Commit to keeping the Chief Joseph building operating as part of the dual campus for a minimum of three years, while maintaining the option to establish a middle school at Ockley Green in the future (at which point Chief Joseph would revert to K-5).
    • Place a hold on any future Jefferson Cluster school reconfigurations/closures until the transfer, equity, and boundary policies are addressed via a task force consisting of community members and PPS teachers, administrators, staff, and the PPS Board.

  • Promote Equal Opportunities for Growth
    • Guarantee equity for the merged program by allowing transfers in. If transfers are not to be allowed in, limit transfers out of the OG-CJ merged program.
    • Apply transfer policies with fairness throughout the district. Until the transfer policy is addressed district-wide, every school should have the right to grow and welcome families who have made a deliberate choice to be a part of that community.
    • Allow current Transfer, Magnet & SPED families the opportunity to stay with the OG-CJ cohort through 8th grade, regardless of future configuration.

  • Promote Community
    • Clarify the availability of ODE and Title One funding before the new school year, with an emphasis on maintaining bussing for out-of-boundary Ockley students and the continuation of a Pre-Kindergarten.
    • Ensure selection of a 3-member OG-CJ administrative team with a proven understanding of best practices regarding curriculum, staff development, behavior management, and the developmental progression from PreK-8th grade.
    • Make every available effort to keep current OG-CJ teachers with our students.
    • Allow the current communities of Ockley Green and Chief Joseph to engage in a sit down approach that involves PPS administration, teachers, parents and students. This could begin before hiring decisions are made, and continue through the summer to generate a very clear set of desired outcomes for our new merged school to pursue during our first year of existence.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

KGW: "N. Portland schools in Jefferson cluster won't face closure"

KGW ran the following story after the PPS board meeting on Monday (2/11). You can read the full story here.

The Oregonian Coverage

Once again, Nicole Dungca of The Oregonian covered the uprising at the PPS board meeting on Monday (2/11):
Portland Public Schools Superintendent Carole Smith will no longer recommend the eventual closure of Chief Joseph Elementary School’s building after revising a proposal she released earlier this month.  
To help balance enrollments among a cluster of North and Northeast Portland schools, Smith on Feb. 1 proposed merging Chief Joseph and Ockley Green into a dual campus, followed by the closure of the Chief Joseph building at some point in the future.

To read her article, click here.