If you don’t already know, let me tell you about our amazing public schools in Lake Oswego. Our elementary and junior high schools have the lowest class sizes and highest achievement scores in the Portland area. Our high school graduates have the highest SAT and ACT scores in the state, with many moving on to prestigious schools including Harvard, Yale, George Washington, Cal, Stanford, the U.S. Naval Academy, OSU and U of O honors colleges. The list goes on and on.Griffin

But it’s not just the academic superstars that thrive in our schools. For many, a successful school career means overcoming obstacles and meeting academic challenges head-on. For others, it can mean learning to adapt to physical or emotional challenges on a daily basis. In all cases, additional teachers and teaching specialists contribute to a successful learning environment. In Lake Oswego, we are committed to cultivating the success of every single student.

In an era of mass teacher layoffs in many other school districts, our Lake Oswego schools have managed to maintain a level of excellence rarely found in public school systems. And it’s not just public schools that we compare favorably with.

While our SAT and ACT scores are head and shoulders above virtually any other public school district, they are comparable to — and in many cases higher than — private college preparatory schools in the region. Of course, SAT and ACT scores are not the only measure of a school district’s excellence. But those scores represent a culmination of years of dedication and honed skills that begin in early elementary school. The additional teachers and educational specialists in our elementary schools help nurture the academic and personal success of our students, from a very young age.

This level of excellence doesn’t just happen. It takes a lot of hard work and a lot of investment. The return on that investment is the best education value around. Your Lake Oswego Schools Foundation’s sole purpose is to put more teachers in our district. This year, foundation dollars are paying for approximately 20 teachers more than baseline funding would allow. In addition to the local option levy, the foundation is the best way to maintain our edge and keep our schools great.

This week, the Lake Oswego Schools Foundation kicked off our annual campaign, with its 19th annual luncheon held at the Oswego Lake Country Club. Nearly 300 community members joined together to voice their support and make their contributions to help ensure that our schools maintain the excellence we strive for. Please join us in supporting your Lake Oswego schools. Answer the call, or visit to make a contribution. Together, let’s sustain the tradition of outstanding schools in Lake Oswego.

Kerry Griffin, Lake Oswego, is president of the Lake Oswego Schools Foundation.

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