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School notes: Board seats up for election; kindergarten roundups; Oregon City open enrollment; etc.

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Four seats on the Gladstone School Board are up for election this spring, along with three seats on each of the North Clackamas and Oregon City school boards.

Four seats on the Gladstone School Board are up for election this spring, along with three seats on each of the North Clackamas and Oregon City school boards.

All positions are four-year terms, effective July 1, 2017, and expiring June 30, 2021. To be eligible, a candidate must be a registered voter within the school district they wish to represent. 

As of last week, Connie Curteman had filed for re-election to the Oregon City School Board. For the North Clackamas School Board, Mitzi Bauer plans to run for re-election; Tory McVay is opposed in his re-election campaign by Jill Jackson; and Kathi Wai is running unopposed for the seat that had been held by Vivian Scott.

In Gladstone, Nicole Kariel Vera-Vera Couzens and Jay Schmidt both plan to run for re-election. Rod Cole and Bruce Wadsworth have decided not to run again, after serving many years on the board that makes policy and budget decisions that impact four schools and over 2,100 Gladstone students.

"We are grateful to Rod Cole and Bruce Wadsworth for their years of service on the board," said Superintendent Bob Stewart. "School board members play a vital role in shaping Gladstone schools and bringing community perspectives to district leaders."

Individuals who want to run for office must file for candidacy by March 16. Information is available at clackamas.us/elections/20170516.html.

Miss Oregon meets with kindergarteners

Kindergarten students at the Gladstone Center for Children & Families got a special treat last month, a visit from Miss Oregon, Alexis Mather. The children were excited to hear her presentation on the importance of kindness and honesty.

PHOTO COURTESY: LESLIE ROBINETTE - Miss Oregon Alexis Mather visits Gladstone kindergarteners and performs songs from the Disney hit 'Frozen.'Mather, an opera singer attending Portland State University, performed songs from the Disney hit "Frozen."

High school mock trials held in OC

On March 4, a dozen teams of high school students competed in a regional mock trial competition at the Clackamas County Courthouse in Oregon City. The David Douglas High School team was led by Joseph Cornett, a PSU graduate student in the Secondary Dual Educator Program. It was the first time in 10 years that DDHS has fielded a team. Graduates of this program earn a teaching license and master's degree in special education and a content area, in this case, social studies.

Mock trial is a competitive academic activity that puts two teams up against each other in trying an authentic legal case. The Classroom Law Project developed the competition to promote civic engagement and legal education throughout the state of Oregon.

Recreation programs offer new experiences

Ready for spring? Celebrate this season of growth by learning herb gardening basics, making garden art, going on a birdwatching expedition, or learning a new language for your summer travels.

The Gladstone and Oregon City Community Schools programs offer more than 100 fun and affordable recreation classes for all ages, from guitar, yoga, painting and computer skills to dance, martial arts, investing and driver education. To register, visit bit.ly/2lUiDaZ or ocsd62.org/community-education.

"Recreation and learning benefit people of all ages," said Gladstone Community Schools Director Tammy Tracy. "If you need to lift your mood, make new friends, improve your health, or challenge yourself, a recreation class is an easy way to do that."

Rowe social worker receives county award

At the Board of County Commissioners meeting Thursday, March 2, District Attorney John Foote presented Rowe Middle School Social Worker Evan King with the 2016 Dee Lewitz Community Commitment Award.

The award recognizes a community member who has demonstrated outstanding and sustained commitment to making the county stronger and safer by improving quality of life.

King was selected for her critical roles at the school involving:

The Rowe Community Collaboration group, which brings individuals, nonprofits, communities of faith, service clubs and other government partners together to work collaboratively to improve the well-being of students and families. Partners in this effort include the Oregon Food Bank, Central City Concern, Milwaukie Ledding Library, GracePointe Church, Clackamas County Behavioral Health, Northwest Family Services, Chartwells, Clackamas Service Center, Clackamas and Milwaukie Rotary Clubs, and various county departments.

The Rowe Food for Success program provides food for at-risk kids that supports learning and making the school a safer environment in the following ways:

1. An afternoon snack program that serves 600 kids every school day,

2. The establishment of a "share table," on which kids can leave unneeded food for others in need,

3. A meal account for those kids who have no available funds for lunch.

Parental involvement efforts, involving Madres de Corazon (school support group bringing together Spanish and English-speaking communities) and the Parent Teacher Association, to meet the needs of at-risk kids and families.

Connecting at-risk kids and families to mental health resources.

The Attendance Court program, which seeks to help kids and families improve school attendance, be successful academically, and stay on track to graduate.

OC schools open doors to transfers

Apply by April 1 for open spots for the 2017-18 school year in kindergarten at Jennings Lodge and ninth and 10th grades at Oregon City High School.

If there are more applicants than open spots, a lottery will determine admission. Families will be notified of admission by mid-April. Students admitted are considered permanent residents of Oregon City unless they withdraw.

Jennings Lodge is home to both a regular education program and a bilingual Spanish program.

Beyond having the highest graduation rate in the state, Oregon City High School offers Advanced Placement courses, college-credit courses, a rich offering of electives, over 30 activity clubs; nationally recognized athletic programs, award-winning band and choir, art and drama courses, and the Army Junior Reserve Officer's Training Corps.

To apply, complete the online form at ocsd62.org before the April 1 deadline.

Kindergarten roundup

Oregon City, Gladstone, Jennings Lodge, Beavercreek and Redland families with children who will be 5 years old on or before Sept. 1 are invited to tour their local public school, meet the kindergarten teachers, school principal and complete necessary forms.

If you are unsure which school to visit, enter your address into the Clackamas County Mapping Application at cmap.clackamas.us.

Bring any questions that you have, a copy of a birth certificate, immunization record and a utility bill showing your current address to:

n Beavercreek, 21944 S. Yeoman Road, 6:30 p.m. Thursday, March 9

n Gaffney Lane, 13521 S. Gaffney Lane, 6 p.m. Thursday, March 9

n Holcomb, 14625 Holcomb Blvd., 5 p.m. Tuesday, March 7

n Jennings Lodge, 18521 S.E. River Road, 2 p.m. Wednesday, March 15

n McLoughlin, 19230 South End Road, 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 8

n Redland, 18131 S. Redland Road, 6 p.m. Thursday, March 9

In Gladstone, parents and incoming kindergarten students are encouraged to attend the March into Kindergarten orientation session from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 14, at the Gladstone Center for Children & Families, 18905 Portland Ave. Children get to go on a school bus ride while parents receive their registration packet.

At the Gladstone Center, there are two days to drop off kindergarten registration packets from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Monday, April 3, or from 9 to 11 a.m. Wednesday, April 5. Contact Heidi Smith at 503-496-3939 if you have questions.

NCSD gets dental grant

Oregon has one of the country's highest rates of childhood dental disease. The causes of this preventable epidemic include limited access to community water fluoridation, inadequate education, economic hardship and lack of dental insurance and dental care. If left untreated, dental disease can be devastating to children's health, educational success, productivity, self-image and future potential.

To address the statewide crisis in Oregon, the Oregon Community Foundation (OCF) launched the five-year Children's Dental Health Initiative in 2014 and built partnerships with other funders to improve access to care statewide. With financial support from A-dec, The Collins Foundation, The Ford Family Foundation, Kaiser Permanente, Meyer Memorial Trust, Northwest Health Foundation, and Providence Health and Services, OCF awarded 14 grants totaling $773,500 to bring dental screening and preventive services into school settings, promote oral health literacy, and develop infrastructure that provides all children in Oregon with timely access to age-appropriate dental care.

The North Clackamas School District received $70,000 to implement a comprehensive school-based dental program for North Clackamas K-12 students.

"Dental disease is the most common chronic health condition in children, and yet it is preventable. Dental care should begin with the mother-to-be and children should have their first dental visit by age 1. It is never too early to safeguard your child, since dental disease is linked to other health issues and lost time at school. Every dollar spent on childhood preventive dental care is an investment in Oregon's future," said Alyssa Franzen, dental director for CareOregon. "The cost of effective early intervention is negligible compared to the social and economic costs of widespread, untreated dental disease in our state."