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Scheduling a non-instructional day and a property purchase were hot topics at the Nov. 1 school board meeting. 

The West Linn-Wilsonville School Board approved a non-school day, advertised positions on the Budget Committee and extended another opportunity for community members to share their thoughts with the panel at a meeting Monday, Nov. 1.

Nov. 12 made 'wellness day'

The board voted to make Friday, Nov. 12, a wellness day for students and staff.

Multiple factors were considered in the motion for the non-instructional day, one being the labor shortage that has impacted the school district since the start of the academic year.

The district currently has 34 open positions, nearly all for substitute teachers, paraeducators or temporary instructors. The district even has an opening for an emergency substitute teacher tasked specifically with helping to alleviate the shortage.

The teaching shortage has impacted the work days of other staff members, with some administrative staff, such as counselors and principals, stepping in to teach courses. Other instructors forfeited their planning period to fill in for other classes.

The day off on Nov. 12 is intended as one solution to offer slight relief to overworked staff, according to the board. This day will not be made up later on in the school year, and the district will still meet state requirements for instructional hours.

Budget Committee slots open

Two positions are now open on the school district's Budget Committee. The main role of committee members is to work alongside the school board to review and approve the budget for each academic year, and they must attend a minimum of five evening meetings starting in the spring. Budget Committee members sign on to a three-year term.

Land purchased to expand administration building

The board signed an agreement to buy 21 acres of land located right next to the District Administration Building.

The property currently houses a single-family home. One acre of the property will be used to expand the administrative parking lot, while the other 20 acres will be kept as part of the district's land bank to be used at a later time when the district sees fit.

Listening session scheduled for Nov. 17

During the Oct. 18 school board working session, members workshopped a potential listening session that aims to rebuild trust and communication between the board and community members. The hope is also to hear from "underserved" families, said board member Louis Taylor.

At the Nov. 1 meeting, the board approved the listening session idea and scheduled the first one for 7 p.m. on Nov. 17. The meeting will be virtual, and board members will not take action or motion for approval based on any concerns mentioned during the event. The listening session is intended to foster community conversation and connection.

The theme of the first listening session will be "The role and purpose of school boards."

Vaccination clinics set Nov. 13, Dec. 4

To increase vaccination rates in the district, vaccination clinics will be available for interested parties Nov. 13 and Dec. 4 at Meridian Creek Middle School.

In partnership with the Clackamas County Public Health department, any community member can receive their first COVID-19 vaccination on those dates. The vaccinations are for anyone 12 and over; however, appointments can be available for those aged 5-11 depending on executive approval. Booster shoots will not be available at clinics.

The school board will meet next at 6 p.m. on Dec. 6.


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