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Banks, Gaston board seats open in election

Three Banks School Board positions will stand for election in May, including those held by Norie Dimeo-Ediger, Will Moore and board vice-chairman Richard Bowden.

In Gaston, school board chairman Roger Mesenbrink's Position 3 seat and Karen Fordyce's Position 2 seat are open. Their current terms expire in June.

Candidates must complete an application and file it with the Washington County Elections Office between Feb. 9 and March 21. The deadline to file a candidate statement for the Voter's Pamphlet is March 25.

To qualify, a candidate must be a registered voter, live within their district's boundaries and have lived in the district for at least a year. For more information, visit banks.k12.or.us or gaston.k12.or.us.

School board invites community dialogue

The Forest Grove School Board established three major goals for itself during the 2012-13 fiscal year, according to vice-chairman John Hayes. “One goal is to engage in discussions with community members,” Hayes said last week. “Because the format for board meetings does not allow for discussion with the audience, we are setting up a series of separate meetings.”

Anyone interested in chatting with board members is invited to an informal discussion session from 5:15 to 6 p.m. before the regular Monday, Jan. 28 school board meeting. The session is in the Grove Room at the District Office, 1728 Main St. “If there is sufficient community interest, we would try to hold one discussion session per month,” noted Hayes.

Because the chat sessions will not be official board meetings, only two of the five board members may be present to avoid creating a quorum. A few district staff members also will attend to help answer questions.

For each meeting, attendees will be asked to fill out cards upon arrival, identifying the topics they would like to discuss. Board members “will then take a few moments to sort through the cards, choosing topics in order of interest,” Hayes said. “If we do not get to every topic, we will hold those over until the next meeting.”

For more information, contact Hayes at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Pacific camp applications open

Applications are now being accepted for girls currently in seventh and eighth grade to take part in a free four-week computer science camp at Pacific University this summer.

The camp, Girls Gather for Computer Science (G2CS), will take place June 17 through July 12 at the university's Forest Grove campus. It will include hands-on learning activities as well as field trips related to science and technology.

Complete information, including previous years curricula and the application to participate in this year's camp, can be accessed at g2cs.org. Space is limited and the deadline to apply is Feb. 13.

Contest open to student writing, artwork

For the 13th year, the Honoring Our Rivers project — part of the Willamette Partnership, a nonprofit — is sponsoring a showcase of Oregon student writing and artwork focused on rivers and watersheds. Schools, teachers, academic advisors, community youth programs and home-schoolers are encouraged to promote student submissions before the project’s upcoming Jan. 31 postmark deadline.

Last year, 600 students submitted to the project, with more than 150 selected for publication and exhibition.

Student work in the Honoring Our Rivers anthology appears alongside submissions from Oregon’s leading writers. The 2012 anthology included work by Ursula Le Guin, Brian Doyle, Barry Lopez and Oregon poet laureate Paulann Petersen. The 2013 anthology will include writings by Jon Raymond, Gina Ochsner, Jane Kirkpatrick and Robert Michael Pyle, among others.

For more information, visit honoringourriver.org.