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Parent urges district to pick up swim program

Greg Rooker of Forest Grove, a father of five, urged Forest Grove School Board members Monday night to consider reinstating a long-dormant program providing swimming lessons in the wake of an incident at Hagg Lake on Sept. 16 in which eight children nearly drowned. Rooker, whose kids are all proficient swimmers, recommended the Make A Splash Foundation program, a nationwide child-focused water safety initiative, to help district students become water safe. "The budget was cut many years ago," Rooker told the board, urging members to "reevaluate the decision to drop that program."

Joseph Gale School dedication draws 130

About 130 parents, students, teachers, administrators, architects and community members gathered at Joseph Gale Elementary School last Thursday for an evening dedication of the 72,000-square-foot building and campus. Also present were school board members past and present, members of the "Yes for Kids" committee that lobbied for passage of the construction bond financing the new school and representatives from Mahlum Architects and Triplett Wellman Contractors. Forest Grove High School sophomore Rebecca Yakos sang the National Anthem and Superintendent Yvonne Curtis came to the podium to deliver a welcome and make introductions. School board chairwoman Alisa Hampton spoke as well before Curtis and Principal Melissa Carter presented a plaque to the school, located on 18th Avenue in Forest Grove. A ribbon cutting, refreshments and tours followed the main event.

Banks' Cackler a 'commended student'

Emily Cackler, a senior at Banks High School, has been named a "commended student" in the 2013 National Merit Scholarship Program, according to Principal Mark Everett. About 34,000 commended students throughout the nation were recognized for exceptional academic promise in placing among the top 5 percent of more than 1.5 million students who entered the 2013 NMS competition by taking the 2011 preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test.

Pacific degree programs among the ‘best in health care’

Eight of Pacific University’s professional degree programs are among the “Best Health Care Jobs in 2012,” according to the employment website CareerCast. Degree programs include CareerCast’s top seven health professions for 2012. U.S. Department of Labor officials recently reported that “wage and salary employment in the health care industry is projected to increase 27 percent through 2014, compared with 14 percent for all industries combined.” Following are the professions ranked in the top seven by CareerCast, which noted that healthcare job opportunities are “lucrative, rewarding and exponentially growing”: dental hygienist, audiologist, occupational therapist, physical therapist, pharmacist and physician assistant (all in Pacific’s College of Health Professions); and optometrist (College of Optometry). Speech-language pathologist (College of Education) was ranked 11th in CareerCast’s analysis.

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