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State issues school report cards

PORTLAND - Forty-one percent of schools in the Portland Public Schools district met new, tougher standards to earn the top of three grades - 'outstanding' - on state report cards released Oct. 6, including Southwest's Wilson High School and several of the elementary schools in its cluster.

Each year, the Oregon Department of Education issues report cards for school districts and schools across the state. Those report cards off er data on teacher experience, class size and student achievement. Based on how its students performed on the state's standardized tests, its improvement compared to previous years and its graduation rates, a school is assigned one of three labels: 'outstanding,' 'satisfactory' or 'in need of improvement.'

Overall, 87 percent of rated PPS schools earned a 'satisfactory' grade or better, including Markham Elementary and Jackson and Robert Gray middle schools. Robert Gray was one of 10 schools throughout the district to drop a grade from last year's report, slipping from 'outstanding' to 'satisfactory.'

School report cards also take into account a school's Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) in meeting federal standards outlined by the No Child Left Behind Act.

Robert Gray Middle School received a 'not met' designation on its AYP report for the first time earlier this year, falling short in terms of English test scores in subgroup of students with disabilities and in terms of math scores among economically disadvantaged students, students with disabilities and Hispanic students.

To view an individual school's report card, visit www.ode.state.or.us/data/reportcard/reports.aspx.

- Portland Public Schools

Donate materials to Jackson Middle School shop class

WEST PORTLAND PARK - The Jackson Middle School's Engineering Design Class is in need of donations.

In this class, students use their math and science skills for hands-on projects, including catapults, car ramps and rockets. In order to build and design their projects, they need supplies.

The program has had a 50 percent material budget cut, and it is looking to the community for donations to help fill the gap. The class uses consumable supplies such as wood, nails, screws, drill bits, screw bits, sandpaper and wood glue. It is especially looking for plywood 2x4s, 2x3s and 2x2s. It will accept any items you have at home that are unused.

If you have items that you are not using and would like to donate, whether they be big or small, please bring your donation to the Jackson Middle School Shop, located at 10625 S.W. 35th Ave., or contact Joe Maddocks at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , or Angela Duarte at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Wilson teacher awarded lifetime achievement award

HILLSDALE - Wilson advanced math teacher Diana Fisher was awarded a lifetime achievement award from the Systems Dynamics Society at its conference in Washington, D.C., in July.

Fisher, who is currently on an educational leave of absence, spoke at the conference about how system dynamics modeling can be introduced in K-12 education.

'The work of some of the Wilson students who were in my modeling class (was highlighted in my presentation),' she told the Wilson High School Spotlight.

Fisher said that the work that students can produce is truly amazing.

'It is my hope to train interested high school teachers in the coming years to use and/or build models to use in their classes,' she said. 'The study of feedback interactions in systems is the focus of the modeling effort, and understanding how systems operate is so important in today's world.'

Her paper from her Lifetime Achievement presentation will be published in the System Dynamics Review, the professional journal of the System Dynamics Society.

Donate Your 'My Coke' Rewards to Wilson

HILLSDALE - If you drink Coke products, you have the power to donate points that translate into cash and prizes appropriate for improving all kinds of areas at Wilson High School. Look under the caps of any Coke product bottle and inside of the carton of Coke, Sprite, Barq's, etc., cans for a code worth three to 10 points. You may enter them on your own My Coke Rewards account and then donate them to Wilson, or drop them in the PTA box in front office and the group will enter them for you. Wilson's Students for Environmental Action (SEA) will collect caps from recycled bottles at school.

Wilson is registered at MyCokeRewards.com and ready to accept suggestions for its wish list and donations of codes. Visit www.mycokerewards. com, scroll over the 'Schools' black tab and click 'donate to a school.'

Enter Wilson's zip code - 97219 - to search, scroll to the bottom of the drop down to find Wilson, click on it and then continue. If you donate soon, you can enter Wilson for the SparksParks for Schools promotion and increase the school's odds of winning $25,000 to improve its grounds.

For more information, contact PTA Vice PresidentMaureen Berrie-Lawson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

'Shop for Schools' at Thinker Toys

MULTNOMAH - Get started on your holiday shopping and help a good cause. Nov. 14 through 16, Multnomah Village's Thinker Toys will donate 15 percent of your total purchase to the area school of your choice. Last year, this program raised more than $2,200 for local schools.

Thinker Toys is located at 7784 S.W. Capitol Hwy. For more information, visit www.thinkertoysoregon.com.

Catlin Gabel hosts open house

SOUTHWEST - Catlin Gabel will host an open house Nov. 13 from 1 to 5 p.m. for parents of students of all ages and students from grades 6 and up to explore the educational opportunities available at the school.

Throughout the afternoon, parents and students will sample the classrooms, talk with teachers and students, meet parents and alumni and see what the school community is all about. They will also be able to engage in mini-classes and visit the facilities, play areas, labs, theaters, gym and arts buildings.

Catlin Gabel is located at 8825 S.W. Barnes Road. For more information about the open house or the school's admissions process, visit www.catlin.edu or call the admission office at 503-297-1894.

PCC hosts bond measure open house

WEST PORTLAND PARK - The passage of Portland Community College's bond measure in November 2008 is leading to much needed renovation at its Sylvania Campus, the college's oldest and largest campus.

Bond-funded improvements will touch several campus buildings and result in enhancements and activities that:

-Add and renovate workforce training, instructional facilities

-Renovate and modernize student services areas

-Upgrade classrooms and office space

-Add a child development center

-Initiate health and safety upgrades to buildings and campus

-Implement the first phase of the 'Road to NetZero - the E6 Plan'

-Improve safety and evacuation needs as part of campus road construction

Join the discussion about Sylvania's bond planning and renovation at two information sessions, to be held Nov.1 at noon to 1:30 p.m. and 5:30 to 7 p.m.

The sessions will be led by GBD Architects and members of the college's bond team and Sylvania's administrative team. They are free, open to the public and a chance to ask questions, listen to plans, engage in conversation and tour work that's already been accomplished.

Appetizers and refreshments will be provided.

Portland Community College's Sylvania Campus is located at 12000 S.W. 49th Ave. To R.S.V.P. for the open house sessions, contact Kate Chester, PCC Sylvania Community Relations manager, at 971-722-8233.