Chief Joseph Elementary

A strong, diverse and respectful community
where we make learning creative and fun

2409 N. Saratoga St.Portland, OR 97217Ph (503) 916-6255Fx (503) 916-2618

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Chief Joseph
School News

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Principal's Message

  • Dear Families,


    Welcome to the 2023-24 school year! As a staff, we are excited for the upcoming school year and are eagerly looking forward to building memories and relationships, as well as developing the skills and knowledge to be critical thinkers and change agents in our community.


    School doors will open at 8:37, and school will begin at 8:45, dismissing at 3:00 pm. Students in grades 1-2 will enter through the doors near the library.  Students in grades 3-5 will enter the doors near the gym.  Fifth grade students will go directly to the classroom on the first day of school.  Following that, they will drop off items in the classroom, and proceed to their 1st period specials class.


    The school day begins with a community circle, and we are making it our goal to start the school day when the bell rings at 8:45.  Please try to arrive in time for students to get to class and put away belongings, so they are ready to join the community circle at 8:45.


    Again this year, both 4th and 5th grades will be departmentalizing, with one teacher focusing on the math, science and health portions of the content and the other teacher focusing on reading, writing and social studies. This change allows teachers to strengthen their expertise by narrowing the content bands they are required to teach. It will also allow students diversity in their teachers and begin preparing them for middle school.  


    We have had a few shifts in positions; staffing for the 2023-24 school year is as follows:

    Kindergarten:  Ms. Cooper, Ms. Larsen

    1st Grade:  Ms. Peake, Ms. Pepper

    2nd Grade:  Ms. Ferguson, Ms. Pearson

    3rd Grade:  Ms. Michels, Mr. Wolfe

    4th Grade:  Mr. Ibrahim, Ms. Ferguson

    5th Grade:  Ms. Brislin, Mr. Brown

    PE: Ms. Mazur

    Music: Ms. Ray

    Media: Ms. Hall (½ time)

    Art: Mr. Gostovich 

    Counselor: Ms. Weed

    Reading Intervention: (½ time)

    Ms. Hall & Jennifer Pettit

    ELL: Ms. Routtenberg

    Social Worker: TBD

    School Climate Coach: Ms. Whitaker

    Learning Center: Ms. Lopez

    Speech Pathologist: Ms. LeMeune

    Paraeducator: Ms. Thompson, Ms. Filko

    School Psychologist: Mr. Backner

    Instructional Specialist: Ms.Fogg

    Educational Assistant: Ms. Newton

    Library Assistant: Ms. Woodward

    School Secretary: Ashley Gale

    Principal’s Secretary: Michelle Rowley 

    Custodian: Ms. DeWeese, Walter Bennett



    I am extremely excited for the upcoming year and look forward to continuing to build community, advance social justice issues and improve learning.



    Amber Gerber

    Principal, Chief Joseph Elementary School


District News

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  • Update on the Third Day of Mediation

    PPS Flyer with students in background

    Today was disappointing – for us but, most importantly, for our students and families. The Portland Association of Teachers offered no counter proposals – and yet declared impasse.

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  • Update on the Second Day of Mediation

    PPS Flyer with students in background

    Today, we offered compromises that would both reward our educators and further our students’ success. We were able to raise our compensation offer substantially. We are not there yet, but we are committed to the hard work of finding common ground.

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  • Update on the First Day of Mediation

    PPS Flyer with students in background

    Today, we started the state-led mediation process with one priority: our children’s success. We offered compromises that would keep that vision at the heart of our work – and maintained our position on proposals that would negatively impact students.

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  • Welcome back!

    On behalf of the Board of Education and district leaders at PPS, our best wishes for a positive and joyful start to your school year!

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Upcoming Events

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