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District Office Hours
Monday – Thursday: 7:30 AM – 4:30 PM
The Board Meeting for today, 1/10/17, will be held at the Central Point School District Office (300 Ash Street, Central Point).
December 21, 2016
Results of our follow up tests for faucets which exceeded EPA limits during our testing in November are listed below. These tests, along with future tests, are part of the District’s protocol to locate the sources of lead. Remedies to correct lead levels which exceed EPA limits may include replacement of fixtures, the addition of filters, and/or other plumbing projects. Alternative sources of water may be supplied if plumbing work cannot be completed in time for school. This process represents our commitment to provide our students and staff with water which meet standards set by the EPA.
December 11, 2016
I want to update you about lead testing in our schools’ water sources. Following the news from Portland Public that revealed levels of lead that exceeded EPA standards in a few of their aging school buildings last spring, we opted to begin testing for lead in our buildings. In June of 2016 random water samples were collected from every district facility and tested for lead—none of the random samples collected in June exceeded EPA standards for lead. Copies of the results were provided to the Mail Tribune and links to the actual reports, by building, were posted on the District’s website and FaceBook.
Under current law, all of our school buildings, with the exception of Sams Valley Elementary, are exempt from mandatory water testing because they are served by city water systems. The laws are based on the fact that municipal water systems test the water prior to distribution to the community, including the schools. In Sams Valley, where water is from a well, water samples are analyzed weekly for chlorine and every three years for lead.
In the last few months, the Oregon Legislature and the Oregon Health Authority have released recommendations for lead testing of water systems. One of these recommendations suggests that in order to identify sources of lead, schools should test all taps used in schools for drinking or food preparation. While this was only a recommendation, and our initial, random, tests revealed no issues with lead, I felt that a voluntary test of all taps used in our schools for drinking, food preparation, and potential consumption was again, a good idea (our buildings, including the plumbing, are aging). Therefore, our maintenance staff collected samples from 790 water sources in our buildings.
Results of this second-round of testing are now in and are posted by building, below. Results continue to demonstrate that overall, our drinking water is safe. However, results also revelaed that 6% of water sources within the district have lead levels which exceed the EPA limits. Only one of those sources was a drinking fountain—the majority were restroom faucets. These taps, if used for drinking or food preparation, were shut off immediately. Taps where shutoff is not possible have tagged clearly with an explanation that they are not to be used for drinking or food preparation. Remedies to correct this issue may include replacement of fixtures, the addition of filters, and/or other plumbing projects. Alternative sources of water may be supplied if plumbing work cannot be completed in time for school.
Our commitment is that no person will be allowed to drink or prepare food with water from fixtures that are found to exceed EPA standards or are unsafe. I will continue to keep you updated as we work to correct the few sources within the district which require attention. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns related to this issue.
We value instructional time and will delay or close schools only when transportation to or from our schools is deemed unsafe. When inclement weather is predicted, Deena Engberg (our First Student manager) and I will be in nearly constant communication. She will be out on the roads by 5:00 am to determine bus safety. Ultimately, we determine whether or not it is safe to transport students to and from our schools. Sometimes, this means that schools are open and we operate “snow routes” and sometimes it means that conditions may seem great in town, but are bad enough in rural areas to warrant a delay or closure.
The following is our communication protocol for school delays or closure:
- District 6 staff will receive an email with the details of the delay or closure, immediately following the decision.
- Approximately 15 minutes after notification to staff, Deena Engberg will notify the media with delay or closure information, along with any changes in bus routes. We will also ensure that the District website and the District Facebook pages are updated at the same time that media is notified.
- If you have questions or concerns, you are always welcome to contact me directly: email@example.com 541.494.6201 (office) 541.840.5644 (cell).
First Student has already prepared for winter driving conditions as higher elevation routes have buses with automatic drop chains and drivers have been trained in safe driving procedures for rain, snow, fog and ice. Drivers have already had “chaining class” and “snow training,” so they are well prepared for winter driving.
My weather wish is that the snow will fall heavily in the mountains all winter, but only on the valley floor for Christmas day and the occasional weekend afternoon—enough to facilitate snowman construction.
Like many of you, we were concerned about drinking water after seeing news about unhealthy levels of lead in some elementary schools in Portland. Currently, Oregon law does not require schools to test drinking water, however, District 6 collected water samples, on June 2, 2016, from all district facilities (except Sams Valley—that facility was tested in September of 2015 as part of routine required testing for well water) to test for lead and copper. Although some samples contained small amounts of lead, all samples were below EPA standards. Samples were taken from a variety of sources in each building and collected according to the protocols established by Neilson Research. Neilson also conducted the analysis of each sample and their reports, by building, are linked below.
- Crater School of Business, Innovation & Science
- Crater School of Health & Public Services
It is now official, we have migrated off of Gmail and onto Microsoft Exchange. What does that mean? What that means is that Gmail is no longer available for staff. Don’t worry, all of your emails have been migrated over to the new mail server and can be viewed using any web browser (mail.district6.org), smart phone or using Outlook. Please click on one of the HOW-TO’s for setting up your devices.
The Central Point School District is where “tradition meets innovation” and as such, we are traditionally underfunded yet innovative in managing our schools and programs efficiently. The 2015-17 biennium promised a slow turn toward increased revenue and stability and, after 6 years of relying on our cash carryover to close the gap, our revenue finally exceeded our expenditures. In fact, our revenue is expected to exceed projections by 1.7 million.
Our increased revenue for 2015-16 was the result of two factors- increased enrollment and an uptick in the economy (primarily state tax revenues and increased property tax receipts). Last year we opened enrollment in our district-a strategy designed to allow for the retention of students on existing inter-district transfers and to increase the number of new students who enroll in our district. We were cautious and did not project any additional revenue attributed to open enrollment, but we did see an increase in revenue resulting from additional students who enrolled and remained in the district-nearly a million dollars. Further, local real estate receipts were higher than expected due to increased assessed property values and the district also received Federal Forest Fees-a revenue source that was completely unexpected.
The 2016-17 school year is the second year in the biennium and unlike previous years, the funding for the second year is relatively flat (usually the funding is split 49/51 to allow for annual roll up costs). Additionally, economic reports indicate modest growth in the Oregon economy which supports a more stable outlook on future funding. Although we expect to see the increase in local real estate receipts to continue, we do not expect to receive Federal Forest Fees in 2016-17.
Our projected beginning fund balance is $3.3 million (8%) and our projected revenue is $43.3 (including beginning fund balance). Our revenue projections are based on flat enrollment going into 2016-17. Even though our open enrollment policy significantly increased our ADM and revenue in 2015-16, we expect a stable enrollment to slight increase for 2016-17 (changes in OARs have restricted inter-district transfers and the impact of our open enrollment policy will stabilize after the first year).
The 2016-17 budget is status quo-we are neither reducing programs nor adding any significant programs. We will maintain the staffing increases from last year to support additional enrollment and full day kindergarten.
Additions to the budget include: 1.0 Campus Security and .5 FTE in college counseling. We have also budgeted for 2.0 FTE in contingency positions in the event that enrollment does increase. Our roll up costs for existing contractual obligations in personnel (STEPS, COLAs and increased benefit costs) are accounted for in the 2016-17 budget. We have also budgeted for $150K in bond planning expenses. Overall expenditures for 2016-17 represent an increase of $2.8 million above the 15-16 budget.
Challenges and Opportunities
- Special Education costs continue to increase. Last year we moved some programs out of the regional services offered through SOESD and into our district in an effort to reduce costs and increase services to our students. In 2016-17 we will continue to determine where we can serve our students in our own schools in a more cost efficient way. However, the 2016-17 budget reflects an increase in Special Education costs.
- Class sizes continue to be above average for both Oregon and the region. Our district operates with fewer dollars per student than our neighboring districts and fewer dollars than the Oregon average; there is nowhere that this gap is more obvious than in class size. Increased enrollment will allow us to retain current staffing levels and add additional staff.
- Our facilities continue to be a challenge: heating and cooling issues; school safety; universal design for student access; classroom space in our in-town schools; and many other issues that emerge from well worn and well loved facilities. The district will conduct a demographic study and building assessment to determine how we might best improve our school facilities.
In spite of the challenges above, we continue to consider how we can better serve students and families, increase efficiencies and invest our few dollars in the programs and services with the best return on investment.
District 6 is dedicated to helping each student reach his or her full potential. The outcomes identified in our strategic planning process in 2014 remain our focus: Core Knowledge; Creative Problem Solving; Collaboration; Transition; Communication and Character. Our 2016-17 budget reflects the programs and talented staff that we know will make a difference in every child’s success.
Central Point – Gold Hill – Sams Valley