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by: TIMES PHOTO: JONATHAN HOUSE - Beaverton School Superintendent Jeff RoseNext Tuesday, schools will reopen across the Beaverton School District to nearly 40,000 children. Already there is a sense of excitement, energy and hope across our system. We have a lot to be grateful for, and we owe a huge debt of gratitude to the Beaverton community that continually shows their passion for their children and a strong education system.

In my years in education, I can’t recall a parent or educator who considers an average education good enough. Our district won’t settle for good enough. We want to be compared at the national and international levels. We all want our kids to reach their potential, be able to pursue their interests and dreams, contribute to our communities, compete in our economy, earn a livable wage and be confident, life-long learners. With your help and support, WE can make their dreams a reality.

In May, our community decisively and generously approved a local-option levy that enabled us to hire 150 teachers, reducing class sizes throughout the system and addressing the most extreme cases. We allocated the majority of these funds to schools for hiring during the summer. We are projecting to grow by about 180 students as we open our doors. If enrollment exceeds projections, the district will receive additional state funds and make further class-size adjustments in September. We will be watching our schools carefully once we open and will strive to provide further relief once we see the enrollment numbers settle in. Thank you Beaverton community for your support!

Through a more collaborative process, teachers were able to transfer to positions that better match their skill set. In fact, over 380 transfers were completed before school was dismissed and most teachers knew their assignment before summer break. Our human resources department is still in the process of additional hiring and placing staff. We are hearing from very happy teachers and principals that the process this year has already made a huge difference in morale.

After several months of conversations with community stakeholder groups, we have refined our goal and focus. Our community told us that for Beaverton students to lead full and successful lives, we need to expand and strengthen the definition of “WE.” Education shouldn’t be something done in isolation. There is a role for everyone to play in Beaverton public schools. Together WE are stronger. Our community also affirmed a culture of thinking that promotes high expectations for all students to thrive, contribute and excel. The bottom line is that our Beaverton community depends on our students’ success.

Our Goal is for every student to graduate with many options and be prepared to:

  • THINK: Creatively and Critically

  • KNOW: Master Content

  • ACT: Self Direct and Collaborate

  • GO: Navigate Locally and Globally.
  • Our Four Pillars of Learning are:

  • WE Expect Excellence

    — The road to higher education begins in kindergarten.

    — We have the best teachers. They are supported and accountable.

    — Individual student growth is monitored and communicated.

  • WE Innovate

    — Adults adjust and adapt to the learning needs of students and the evolving economy.

    — Technology and the arts are fundamental and integrated.

  • WE Embrace Equity

    — Student success will not be predicted based on race, ethnicity, family economics, mobility, gender, disability or initial proficiencies.

    — Diversity and bilingualism are honored as assets.

  • WE Collaborate

    — No one teaches or learns in isolation.

    — Relationship and engagement with parents and community is inclusive, direct and honest.

  • Communication will become more versatile and robust so parents/guardians and the community can easily learn about our great schools. To learn more about the Goal and Pillars, you can follow our journey this year through a redesigned website and an app for iPhones and Android models. We will be featuring stories of how the four Pillars come to life in our schools. I will personally be using Twitter for work-related communication with the community, beginning this school year, and I invite you to follow me (@JeffRoseSupt). I will be posting some of my activities as I visit schools or work at the city, county, state and national levels. We are also improving parent access to student academic progress. We will launch several of these improvements next week.

    Please join us as we embark on an exciting year! Help Beaverton students excel! Mentor a student. Volunteer at your local school. Offer internships or job shadows. Most of all, encourage our children to come to school ready to work hard and achieve. They deserve the very best from us so they can realize their dreams in the future.

    Jeff Rose serves as superintendent of the Beaverton School District.

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