District News

  • Compacted Math Changes Coming in 2024-25

    Ethan Kramer, Beaumont Middle School’s assistant principal, sees middle school math as so much more than 2x + 3y = 5. 

    “It’s helping to build the logic center – the prefrontal cortex – in analysis and processing,” he said. Given this, Kramer and others believe that middle grades instruction must lay a strong foundation to support more challenging math concepts in the future – first high school, then beyond.

    But what are the components of that foundation? And how is it best established?

    The district’s middle grades core academics team and its grades 6-8 math committee have spent the last year weighing these questions in tandem with educators and community stakeholders. Their goal: a comprehensive math curriculum that challenges students without rushing or skipping over key concepts.

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  • To Close or Not to Close? The Many Factors that Go into an Inclement Weather Decision

    In meteorological terms, Portland’s first big weather event of 2024 has been the definition of a perfect storm. Frigid temperatures and high winds combined with snow and ice to bring down tree limbs, close roads, scramble traffic, freeze pipes, and knock out power for tens of thousands of residents.

    It’s been a metaphorical perfect storm for Portland Public Schools as well. Fallen trees cut power to multiple schools and others have suffered water damage from broken pipes. Lack of heat is also a problem, and impassable roads, paired with snowed-in and icy parking lots, have made it impossible for buses to run safely. Those same conditions have limited how the district’s facilities and operations teams can even assess the scope of the issues, let alone begin working on solutions. And icy sidewalks mean walkers have no safe route to school.

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  • McDaniel Students to the Rescue

    In a dark corner of a dilapidated house, several young people work together to locate a baby in distress. A few hundred feet away, a second group uses cribbing techniques to free a man from a 2,000-pound slab of concrete. Nearby, a third learns how to use a multi-tool to turn off a leaking gas line.

    Thankfully, none of it – the ailing baby, the crushed man, the gas leak – was real. Rather, each scenario was part of Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Training for students from Darshanpreet Gill’s biomedical innovations class.

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  • Dr. Sandy Husk to Serve as Interim Superintendent

     Dr. Sandy Husk

    Dr. Husk has a deep background in education, including 18 years as a public school superintendent, half of it running Oregon’s second largest district. She has a track record of promoting and supporting student achievement and equity, as well as advancing proven instructional strategies and creating a culture of teamwork among all school employees.

    She will start February 12, providing a productive transition before Superintendent Guadalupe Guerrero wraps up his tenure on February 16.

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  • Three PPS Students Named Coca Cola Scholarship Semi-Finalists

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    Three Scholarship Winners

    Gwyneth Bao was in psychology class when she got the email. The Lincoln High School senior almost started crying.

    “It was surreal, to be honest. I almost didn’t believe it.”

    But there it was – a notification that she had been named a semi-finalist for the prestigious Coca-Cola Scholars Program scholarship.

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