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Estacada School District Superintendent Ryan Carpenter shares goals during an all staff gathering

ESTACADA NEWS PHOTO: EMILY LINDSTRAND - Estacada Superintendent Ryan Carpenter addresses members of the school community on Tuesday, Aug. 28.

As summer vacation reaches a close, every member of the Estacada School District community gathered to build excitement for the upcoming academic year.

New and returning teachers, bus drivers, kitchen workers, central office staff, custodians, school board members and others met for lunch and to hear from district leaders on Tuesday, Aug. 28, before students return to schools on Tuesday, Sept. 4.

Superintendent Ryan Carpenter described the gathering as "an awesome opportunity to come together and break bread together" as they prepare for "an amazing nine month journey."

As he began his speech, Carpenter welcomed the school district's new employees, noting that they were hired because they fit in with the collaborative culture in Estacada.

"We've hired team players," he said.ESTACADA NEWS PHOTO: EMILY LINDSTRAND -  Mayor Sean Drinkwine joined Estataca School District employees during a gathering on Tuesday, Aug. 28.

Carpenter acknowledged the service of the maintenance team, nutrition staff, transportation team, technology department, principals, summer school staff, school board members and Estacada Mayor Sean Drinkwine, who was also in attendance.

Carpenter also shared a theme for the upcoming school year — "Learning for all." Related district-wide goals will include providing a rigorous and relevant curriculum to engage students in learning; empower families to be positive influences; and provide consistent, clear and relevant communication to all stakeholders.

Carpenter emphasized the value of collaboration throughout the district.

"Education today is teamwork. It's a group of people coming together to solve high stakes problems," he said.

Members of the Estacada School District community are excited about the upcoming year.

"As we continue to grow, I'm excited to meet all of the new faces, as well as seeing the ones who are coming back again," said River Mill Elementary School Principal Jennifer Behrman.

"I'm excited for our growth and learning expectations that we have for everyone. We're in a good upward trajectory," added Clackamas River Elementary School Principal Amy Hudson.

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