Vernonia Schools News and Sports

VHS Winter Sports Awards

VHS Winter Sports Awards

Girls Basketball

Meghan Sullivan League MVP, First Team All League

Julia Fletcher Second Team All State, First Team All League

Marketa Veselkova Second Team All League

Lisa Paje Honorable Mention All League

Boys Basketball

Clay Sullivan First Team All League, MVP,

Brett Elliot Second Team All League

Tristan Adams Honorable Mention All League, Most Improved

Will Botelho Most Inspirational

Jared Medearis Coaches Award


Andrew Jennings Second District, State, Mr. Hustle

Jake Harbour Second District, State, Most Inspirational

Niklas Merzadah Second District, State

Alex West Second District, State

Daniel Rice Third District, State, Most Valuable

Mekhi Williams Third District

Noah Rylands Fourth District

Storm Hensen Fifth District, Most Improved

Jeffrey Goodman Sixth District

Jessica Goodman Ms. Stat-Tastic

Schools Update: Two Upcoming Events

On Tuesday, April 21st, two exciting events are happening at Vernonia Schools.  First, Operation Safe Students on the Move (OSSOM) in conjunction with the Vernonia Prevention Coalition will be hosting a health fair.

OSSOM is a student led leadership program that focuses on the health and well-being of students.  OSSOM Vernonia students have hosted a health fair at Vernonia High School since 2010.  Topics have been chosen to address current issues that teens face.

This year’s topics include:

•  Impact of drugs on brain development

•  Stress/depression

•  Underage drinking

•  Suicide/self-harm

•  Healthy eating

•  Bullying and Cyber bullying

•  Stereotyping

Each booth will be interactive and participants will walk away with the most up to date knowledge of what kids are dealing with on a daily basis.  This event will be held in the Large Gym at the Vernonia Schools building from 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM. Read More

Charter School Frequently Asked Questions

What is a charter school and what purpose would it serve?

In Oregon, a charter school is a comprehensive public school that operates semi-autonomously under a contract (charter) with a sponsoring district.  According to the Oregon legislature, the purpose of charter schools is to take responsible risks to create new, innovative, more flexible ways of educating all children within the public school system.

The purpose for Vernonia’s charter school proposal is to continue development and implementation of our current innovative K-12 programs, to obtain input from the parents and the community on the innovative school programming they would like to see implemented, to obtain funding to develop and implement those programs (supplies, materials, staff planning time), and to obtain funding to impact the long term financial stability of the Vernonia School District.

What are the teacher licensing requirements in a charter school?

Per the federal No Child Left Behind act, 100% of teachers in core academic areas must be “highly qualified” at the time of hire, and a minimum of 50% of the FTE of the charter teachers and staff must be licensed by the Oregon Teacher Standards and Practices commission.

What are the benefits? Why is Vernonia considering moving to a charter school model?

Vernonia is considering exploring the benefits and challenges of pursuing a charter model as a school-of-choice for students and families. Potential benefits of the charter model include:

• Greater room to innovate and grow our K-12 Science/Technology/Engineering/Art/Math (STEAM)-based curriculum

• Increased ability to collaborate with local business and industry partners

• Better preparation for students to forge careers or paths to colleg.

• More staffing flexibility to better capitalize on local expertise

Another important consideration is an Oregon statute that presently enables public schools converting to a charter system to access state funding at close to twice the per-student standard public school level. This one-time funding would be used to implement the innovative programs of a charter agreement, and can also be applied to significantly reduce the District’s capital debt with no additional tax burden to residents. Current calculations estimate this extra charter funding at approximately $5.3 Million.

Read More

Vernonia School Board Report

At the March 12, 2015 Vernonia School Board Meeting:

Board Extends Contract – The Board approved Resolution 1415-05, extending an Administrative Contract.

Building Reports - Both Elementary Principal Aaron Miller and High School/Middle School Principal  Nate Underwood thanked Classified Employees, which includes Instructional Assistants, Secretaries, Custodians, and Food Service Workers,  for their dedication, hard work and essential service and noted they had been recognized during Classified Employee Week.  Miller also reported that PTA family Week was a big success with good attendance at several events. Underwood recognized members of the Girls Basketball Team who, in addition  to taking 4th place at the State Tournament, were also named 3rd in  OSAA Academic All State.  Underwood explained that all team member’s GPA are averaged for the competition.  The Vernonia Boys Basketball team was named 8th.

Superintendent Report -  Superintendent Aaron Miller reported that enrollment has dropped throughout the school year and is now at 561, but is still ahead of the ending number from last year.

Miller reported he is working to present a balanced budget to the Board and Budget Committee at their first meeting on April 30. Miller said he is still waiting for the state to decide the level of funding.

Miller told the Board they will receive a draft of the school year calendar next month, which will offer options for both a four day and five day week.

Miller told the Board final work is being done on Spencer Park fields and that the new shop facility is almost complete.

Charter School Update - Superintendent Miller provided the Board with an update on the progress being made by the Charter School Steering Committee.  Miller told the Board the Steering Committee is moving forward with two proposals: A District Charter Proposal and a School Charter Proposal.  Under the District Charter Proposal the Mist School would be eliminated.  Miller presented an updated timeline and informed the Board that two Public Hearings have been scheduled for March 30 and March 31. Read More

VHS Sports Hall of Fame Announces 2015 Induction Class

vhs_logger_mascot_colorThe selection committee for the second annual Vernonia High School Athletic Hall of Fame met on Tuesday, March 3rd and selected the group that will be inducted for this year.  Those that were nominated, but did not get selected, will be kept on file for further consideration in future years.  This is the second year of the Hall of Fame and will continue to be an annual event in the coming years.

The event will take place on Saturday, April 4th at the Cedar Ridge Complex and is open to the public.  The event will start at 6:00 PM with a no host bar and social time, dinner will be at 6:30 and the induction ceremony will start after that.  Tickets may be purchased at the door for $15.00.

This year’s group to be inducted are:

Gary Davis Graduated in 1969 Two time State High Jump Champion

Ken Nanson Graduated in 1954 All State Basketball, OSU Basketball

Steve Wolf Graduated in 1994 Two time State Wrestling Champion

Tarah Pond Graduated in 1995 Two time League MVP Volleyball

Tim McLeod Graduated in 1980 All State Football

Sheri Hiveley Graduated in 1980 Two time State place winner in Track

Brent Thompson Graduated in 2007 All State Football

Boys Basketball  1976-77, 1977-78  Two time State Champions

Evelyn Holce Graduated in 1943 Community Supporter

Lady Loggers Grab 4th Place at State

The Vernonia Lady Loggers defeated Monroe 61-56 on Saturday March 7th to take 4th place at the 2A Girls Basketball State Tournament in Pendleton.


The Lady Loggers and head coach Steve Whiteman bounced back from a devastating 64-36 opening round loss on Thursday to eventual runner up Burns to win their final two games and win the consolation round bracket.

The Lady Loggers showed resilience and determination to recover from the loss.  On Friday morning, playing what was probably their best game of the tournament in their 61-51 win over Regis,   senior and Northwest League Player of the Year Meghan Sullivan led the Lady Loggers with 17 points on 7 of 8 shooting from the floor and added 11 rebounds.  Julia Fletcher also scored 17 for Vernonia and Lisa Paje added 13 points including 9 of 10 from the free throw line.  Paige Smith chipped in 7 rebounds.

In the spirited 4th place match up against Monroe on Saturday morning, the Lady Loggers fell behind 10-0 early in the game before scoring the next 12 straight points and grabbed a 21-19 half time lead they never relinquished.

Marketa Vesselkova bounced back and had her best game of the tournament after struggling in the first two games, leading Vernonia with 22 points, including 4 clutch free throws towards the end of the game.  Fletcher had another big game scoring 17 points,  going 5 for 5 from the free throw line including two huge shots to close out the game, and added 7 rebounds. Sullivan was a monster under the boards grabbing 17 rebounds. Smith added  8 more rebounds and scored all her 6 points down the stretch in the 4th quarter to help hold the Lady Loggers lead.  Lisa Paje scored 13 points and also grabbed 6 rebounds.


Lady Loggers Win, Play for 4th Place

The Vernonia Lady Loggers advanced to the finals of the Consolation Bracket at the State Tournament in Pendleton with a 61-51 win over Regis on Friday, February 6.  The Lady Loggers resume play on Saturday at 9:00 AM against Monroe and will play for 4th place.

The Lady Loggers were led by Meghan Sullivan with 17 points and 11 rebounds and Julia Fletcher with 17 points and 5 rebounds.  Lisa Paje added 13 points and 9 rebounds and Paige Smith had 7 rebounds.  Marketa Vesslekova made 9 of 10 free throws  for Vernonia.

VHS Digital Arts Classes Offer College Credit

Vernonia High School is offering dual credit for students who enroll in either of two new Digital Arts classes.

TAKEGRAPHICS-FOR-MULTIMEDIAStudents can take Video Production I and Graphics for Multimedia with Digital Arts instructor Doran Lower and receive both high school and college credit simultaneously.  College credit is through Portland Community College (PCC).

“The idea of these classes is, not only to have other electives available in our school, but also to provide our students with the opportunity to receive free college credits before they actually leave high school,” says Lower.

According to Lower, both classes are being made available as part of the high school Career and Technical Education (CTE) program.  Funding to establish the program came from PCC and the Vernonia School District CTE Grant.  The CTE grant purchased a new Creative Cloud 2014 Adobe Suite of software for Lower’s computer lab.

Lower is an approved dual credit instructor through PCC.  Once enrolled in the high school class, students can register for PCC credit and then have eighteen weeks to complete the work required for the ten week college course.  Lower inputs grades for students into the PCC system. Read More

VHS Winter Sports Update: Lady Loggers Headed to Pendleton

Girls Basketball – The Vernonia Lady Loggers basketball team extended their season for three more games after a decisive 55-45 win at home over the Weston-McEwen Tiger Scots on Saturday,  February 28,  in the first round of the state playoffs.


With the win the Lady Loggers earned a trip to Pendleton and the final eight in the state tournament. This is the first time the Lady Loggers have made it to Pendleton in the history of Vernonia High School.

The Lady Loggers will begin play in Pendleton on Thursday, March 5 when they face Burns at 6:30 PM.  Burns played in the Wapiti League where they went 12-0 in league play and finished their season with a 19-8 overall record.  They lost in the Wapiti District Championship game to Union 57-36  before defeating Faith Bible 55-42 in the first round of the state playoffs. Read More

Lady Loggers Lose in First Round of State Tournament

The Vernonia Lady Loggers lost in the first round of the State Tournament in Pendleton on Thursday March 5, falling to Burns 64-36.  The Lady Loggers continue play on Friday in the consolation bracket at 10:45 AM against Regis.

Senior Julia Fletcher led the Lady Loggers with 17 points and 6 rebounds.  Senior Meghan Sullivan added 9 rebounds.  TheLady Loggers shot 28% from the field and only attempted 9 free throws.

Vernonia stayed close early in the game and led 15-12 at the end of the first quarter.  Burns ended the second quarter with 13-0 run to grab a 27-20 half time lead and never looked back in the second half. 

The Lady Loggers had no answer for Burns’ six foot sophomore Catherine Clemens who scored 26 points and grabbed 19 rebounds.  Junior Madison Carson added 9 points and 12 rebounds for Burns.  Burns shot 42% from the field and attempted 29 free throws.