October 31st, 2023
Today was such a fun day with students. The costumes they wore were amazing and the talent show left me so proud of our students and staff. A huge shout out to our dance teacher, Sara Martins, for choreographing our staff dance to close out the show and for her patience in training us...especially me!
At the end of the assembly today, I shared with your students that I remain hopeful that a swift bargaining resolution will be reached. However, in preparation for a possible school closure, I asked all students to bring home their chromebooks, chargers, books they may want to read, and to empty out all food from their lockers. I reminded our students that this is an adult matter, but that all the adults in this building care deeply about them and that we all look forward to a speedy resolution.
I normally wouldn't send this newsletter until Friday, but I wanted to make sure to get some information out to families a bit earlier this week given the uncertainty of the next few days. Please take a few minutes to read through the information below and reach out to our office staff or admin team if you have any questions in the coming days.
Family Resources During a Possible Strike
The district has asked us to share this link that offers family resources in the event of a strike. That site provides information on resources to support learning, student supports, meal service locations, and some frequently asked questions. The have also asked us to share this one pager which has similar information about supports. Please take a moment to look through both resources.
Grab and Go Meals During a Strike
Normally, in the event of a non-school day or work stoppage, Nutrition Services would not be allowed to serve meals. However, the state received a waiver from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to specifically allow Nutrition Services to provide breakfast and lunch at eligible locations during a strike. While our school is not eligible this year for this special allowance, families are welcome to visit any open, eligible school providing meal services. Visit the family resources page to find out where the closest site to your home is.
Nutrition Services will be providing free grab and go breakfast and lunches on Tuesday, Wednesdays and Thursdays between 11:30 am and 1:00 pm. All meals are free for all current PPS students and children ages 1 to 18 years old, and students do not need to be present to pick up the meals.
When visiting a school, please tell Nutrition Services staff how many children you have in your home and they will provide the appropriate number of meals to take home.
At the end of the assembly today, we reminded students to take their chromebook and charger home. If your student needs a chromebook or charger in the event of a strike, please reach out to Amanda Knutson (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we will work to support you.
Quarter 1 Grading Information
Given the possible teachers’ strike, everyone is wondering what will happen with Quarter 1 report cards. November 3 was set aside as a day to complete report cards but, if PAT is on strike on November 3, report cards will be delayed. Upon return from the strike, we will provide an update about timing on 1st-quarter grades.
Fall Conferences Are November 20th and 21st
This school year, we are planning to have in-person conferences on Monday, November 20th and virtual conferences on Tuesday, November 21st. For both days we will be asking families to sign up through links we will be sending out in an upcoming communication. Given the number of students on our teachers’ caseloads, they cannot meet with every student and family. As such, we are asking families to be diligent about signing up for conferences with classes that you do not have questions or concerns about. We also ask that you hold off on signing up for any Quarter 1 only classes as those have passed and we’ll have moved onto Quarter 2.
High School Information Sessions
Benson Polytechnic High School - Tuesday, Nov. 7, 6:00 p.m.
Jefferson High School - Tuesday, Nov. 14, 5:30 p.m. (cafeteria)
Grant High School - Wednesday, Dec. 6, 6:00 p.m.
video link: Watch here
High School Lottery Window is November 15 to December 15, 2023
Students from across Portland Public Schools can apply to lottery slots at our three focus options high schools:
Benson Polytechnic High School
Jefferson High School-Middle College for Advanced Studies
Metropolitan Learning Center
Learn more: Application and other information
Families Can Now Enroll in 2024 Health Coverage
Please take a moment to read about the time-limited opportunity to enroll in, renew, or change their health insurance plan for 2024. Oregon's health insurance open enrollment period is Nov. 1, 2023 through Jan. 15, 2024. Open enrollment is the only time when anyone who is not offered coverage from a job or a public program like the Oregon Health Plan or Medicare can enroll in health coverage through OregonHealthCare.gov, often with financial help. More information can be found through this link.