Oregon City Grocery Outlet recently donated $6,000 to support the Pioneer Food Pantry, which provides food to homeless and food insecure students at Oregon City High School, Oregon City Service Learning Academy, and the Clackamas Academy of Industrial Sciences.
These students often go hungry over the weekend and other nonschool days because they do not have access to food. The goal is to ensure that these students (and their families) have access to healthy food.
"I couldn't believe it and was amazed at the generosity of one donor," said Ted Thonstad, Pioneer Pantry project coordinator. "Additionally, they support us by providing discounts on food items."
The estimated cost of the nearly 6,000 meals to be provided this school year by the Pioneer Pantry is over $20,000. Additional information about supporting the effort can be found at ochspioneers.org/pioneer-pantry.
Businesses gather school supplies
Happyrock Coffee Roasters and Gladstone Baskin-Robbins wanted to make sure every student had the right tools to start the new school year. Both businesses held school supply drives in August.
"I was blown away by the mountain of donations for Gladstone kids," said Gladstone School District Communications Coordinator Leslie Robinette. "From pencils and calculators to notebooks and backpacks, this is a wonderful gift to our students."
Sexual assault support advocate offers services at CCC
After a year of planning, Clackamas Community College opened its doors to a new sexual assault advocate at its Oregon City campus thanks to a partnership with Clackamas Women's Services.
Funded through a three-year Oregon Department of Justice Crime Victim Services Division grant, CCC is the first community college in the state of Oregon to offer on-site confidential sexual assault advocacy services for students via an agreement with a community partner.
"It's so exciting that CCC and CWS are able to offer this amazing collaboration of support for college students," said Mary Vest, sexual assault advocate for Clackamas Women's Services. "Even if students don't feel that there is an ongoing safety issue or barrier to succeeding in their education, it's important that there is a confidential space on campus where they'll be supported and welcomed."
Also new this year: Oregon City officials are pledging to provide a police officer for patroling CCC who is trained in responding to sexual assault cases. Previously, the college had its own security guards, but it now has contracted with the city for a police officer.
Vest has worked in the anti-sexual and domestic violence field for the past five years, including with Clackamas Women's Services as an advocate stationed at A Safe Place Family Justice Center and as a violence prevention educator.
According to an Association on American Universities 2015 report on sexual assault and sexual misconduct, 23.1 percent of female, 21 percent of transgender, genderqueer or nonconforming, and 5.4 percent of male undergraduate students experience rape or sexual assault through physical force, violence or incapacitation during their college years, with most of the violence happening in their first or second trimester.
Located on the second floor of Barlow Hall, Room 202, students may stop in or schedule an appointment to speak with the advocate. Students who have experienced past or recent sexual violence, those of any gender or immigration status, those with language barriers, and those who don't want a police report, are all welcome.
Vest can help survivors navigate the Title IX process, report a crime, go through the criminal justice process and get resource referrals, or simply help survivors balance school work and financial aid in the context of a traumatic experience. All services are free, confidential and individualized.
Summer hours are 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Thursday. Starting Sept. 25, hours will be 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.
School employees honored with cash awards
The Gladstone School District celebrated the start of the school year by celebrating the accomplishments of outstanding teachers and staff through two cash award programs.
The Thank a Teacher Award is a $250 cash prize in recognition of school leadership, contributions to school success, and excellence in instruction. These awards are funded by an endowment created by retired principal Dick Baker in 2005.
The Making a Difference Award provides a $250 cash prize to classified employees who make a positive impact on students, colleagues, their school and the community. An anonymous donor funded this new award.
Thank a Teacher winners:
? Shannon Bohrer has taught at John Wetten Elementary for 28 of her 30 years in education. She is a master teacher, focused on grades K-4. Over the years she helped plan the Gladstone Center for Children & Families, mentored new teachers, and served on the Response to Intervention team. She received national board vertification in 2007.
? Celeste Pellicci, a current health teacher and former science teacher, has worked at Kraxberger Middle School for 12 years. Currently she serves as president of the Gladstone Teachers Association. She is part of this year's Emerge Oregon class, which trains women to run for elected office.
? Rebecca Chitkowski, a physics and chemistry teacher, includes an indoor skydiving trip as part of her science curriculum. She has taught at Gladstone High School for 13 years, serving on the Academic Advisory Council and as a mentor to new teachers. She holds master's degrees in entomology and teacher leadership. Last year she wrote a grant to improve new teacher training across the district. This year she doubled enrollment in AP Chemistry.
Making a Difference winners:
? Nancy West runs the library at John Wetten Elementary. In her 17 years in the district, she has worked as a special-education assistant, a secretary and supported English learners and low-income students. Helping students find the right book is her passion, and she is proud of the school book fairs she organizes twice a year.
? Peggy Powell has worked as a special education instructional assistant and recess supervisor for 20 years in Gladstone. Currently she works at Kraxberger Middle School, where she enjoys finding ways to create more social spaces in the school and watching "goofy, cool, snarky, scared and confused" adolescents evolve from "darling sixth-graders into independent, confident eighth-graders."
? Ellen Peck, head secretary at Gladstone High School, is a 20-year employee of the district. She began her career as a library assistant, and ran the attendance office before taking on her current role. One of her proudest accomplishments was raising $25,000 and volunteer labor to build the red and blue playground at John Wetten Elementary.
CCC in-service hours
Clackamas Community College staff and faculty are hitting the books before the fall term begins Sept. 25.
Staff and faculty will participate in in-service events the week of Sept. 18-22. The Oregon City campus and the Harmony Community Campus in Milwaukie will have late openings two mornings during in-service to accommodate an all-staff meeting and college division meetings.
Campuses will open at noon on both Tuesday, Sept. 19, and Wednesday, Sept. 20. The college will maintain its regular hours the rest of the week.