Oroville School enrollment also on the rise

The Oroville Elementary School Cafeteria got new tables during the summer, as well as new paint and other improvements. Ila Hall, sixth grade teacher, said the kids are thrilled with the Seahawks-themed cafeteria. She hopes to contact the team to try and get posters to decorate the cafeteria. Dana Kernan McCoy/submitted photos

The Oroville Elementary School Cafeteria got new tables during the summer, as well as new paint and other improvements. Ila Hall, sixth grade teacher, said the kids are thrilled with the Seahawks-themed cafeteria. She hopes to contact the team to try and get posters to decorate the cafeteria. Dana Kernan McCoy/submitted photos

 

OROVILLE – Under ‘Good News and Announcements’ new Oroville School District Superintendent Jeff Hardesty announced that student enrollment is nearly 50 higher than projected.

“It’s sorta bewildering, it’s not typical that we have more than the district estimates,” said Supt. Hardesty, adding that internally the greater number of students can be taught using the existing teachers in the district.

The superintendent said that all the pre-exiting empty teaching positions had been filled.

“That’s really an accomplishment given the national teaching shortage,” he said.

The district has also started a Home School Outreach program.

“We had a parents night for the Home School Outreach and our projected enrollment is seven students. What’s really interesting is they wanted an extra day so the kids could come and play with their peer group,” said Hardesty.

Hardesty also reported the district passed its Washington State Patrol bus inspections with exceptional results.

“Kudos to Jim Bretz, he makes sure that all goes well,” said Hardesty.

The district also made several improvements along with summer maintenance, according to the superintendent. In addition to new tables in the elementary school cafeteria, the walls got painted in Seahawks colors, the elementary bathrooms were also repainted. In addition, he high school tennis courts are nearly through being refurbished, 11 windows were replaced district wide, a concrete pad was poured for a porta potty near the crow’s nest at the football field and much of the florescent lighting was replaced. Steps were replaced at the elementary, as well as the hadrail being repaired and repainted, and the parking lot lines were repainted.

After a short closed door executive session, to update the board on employee contracts, a lengthy consent agenda was approved with a couple items held out for further discussion.

The board approved a fuel bid, as well as a Memorandum of Understanding with Eastern Washington University regarding College in the Classroom and a contract for Avid membership.

In addition, the board approved Sept. 29, Oct. 27, Nov. 22, Dec. 15 as the remaining 2016 board meeting dates and Jan. 26, Feb. 27, March 27, April 24, May 30 and June 26 as the 2017 meeting dates. Sept. 15, Oct. 18 and Dec. 8, 2016 are being set aside for special sessions.

Dara McCoy was hired as the Outreach Teacher for the 2016/17 school year, Joann Peterson as high school counselor and Jennifer Hieb as the new elementary school counselor.

The board had a lengthy discussion about board guidelines, but finally agreed to not bring “surprise” issues to board meetings and to try and not have unexcused absences from meetings, unless there is a valid reason, such as an emergency or a job-related issue that prevents the member from attending.

School Director Todd Hill agreed after the board acknowledged these were “guidelines” only.

About Gary DeVon

Gary DeVon is the managing editor of the Okanogan Valley Gazette-Tribune and celebrated his 25th year at the newspaper in August 2012. He graduated from Gonzaga University with a degree in Communications - Print Journalism, with an emphasis in photojournalism. He is a proud alumnus of Oroville High School. His family first settled in Okanogan County in the late 1800s. His parents are Judy DeVon and the late Larry DeVon and he has two younger brothers - Dante and Michael. Many family members still call Oroville home. He has a grown daughter, Segornae Douglas and a young granddaughter, Erin.