Schools Update: Communication

We are now well into the second month of the school year. In this column you have read about our new emphasis on attendance and the importance of making sure your children are at school as much as possible. You have also learned about the work that the elementary school has done and the significant improvements in student achievement that are happening there.

There are a lot of moving parts to run a school district. I personally only supervise seven people. Many of them in turn supervise others in what is traditionally known as the chain of command. I try to keep informed about what is happening in each of our buildings and among our staff and students. As I visit the school to meet with various staff members I have been impressed with the way things are coming together in the new building. We didn’t have the funds to get new furniture when we moved in but we have made the best of what we have. After all it is not furniture that helps students learn nearly as much as it is the people. And we have good people!

All of our staff members care about kids and each does their part to help them learn. I hope that you realize that they have your child’s best interest in mind in all they do. I also hope that if at any time you do not feel this to be the case, that you let us know your concerns. We each have a different perspective on any given situation, especially when it comes to our own children. So if you see something that doesn’t fit, please visit with your child’s teacher about your concerns. We are open to suggestions and are hoping to improve our communications to parents this year. We really do want to hear from you. If you don’t feel that you are being heard by any staff member then please contact one of our building principals, Mr. Miller (VES) or Mr. Underwood (VMS/VHS), and if you still don’t feel you are getting anywhere, my door is always open.

Communication is a two-way street and I hope to do a better job of keeping the community informed this year. You can check out what’s happening with the Vernonia Education Foundation at and we also have a Facebook page (if I can ever figure out how to use it)!