Editor's note: This marks the last portion of Reedsport School District Superintendent Dan Forbess's annual school report.

Last year, we began using the Willamette Education Service District’s Data Warehouse program as a vehicle to retrieve and utilize comprehensive student data. The Data Warehouse contains multiple years of state assessment, local assessment, attendance and related data for every student in our district. We have provided staff with two formal training sessions and are hopeful the continued use of the data system will lead to data-driving planning and decision making for all students.

Individual Learning Plans for all Students – Our district provides individualized education plans for approximately 120 special education students. Also, beginning at the 7th grade level, efforts to improve our Education /Career Path Plans for middle and high school students are targeted for overall improvement. Formal supplemental learning programs are in place for identified elementary students in need of core reading skill development (Title I), learning disabled (IDEA), and other federal medical condition (504 plan) qualified students. In addition, students may be identified for additional supports, such as: remediation, tutoring, credit recovery, grade retention, and other alternative learning environment settings. As all students move through our elementary, middle, and high school grades, individual educational plans, with career learning goals, are developed and tracked using student portfolios.

Review of student and staff characteristics – Our District operates two school buildings. Highland Elementary School operates Kindergarten through sixth grade classrooms and, as of this report, had a total enrollment of 361 students. The Reedsport Community Charter School operates seventh through twelfth grades and currently has an enrollment of 335 students. HES class sizes are averaging 24 students per class and RCCS classes average 22 students per class. Approximately 80 percent of our students are white, Hispanic/Latino students make up 10 percent of our population, approximately 5 percent of our students are American Indian/Alaska Native, 1 percent of our students are Black/African American, and 4 percent of our students report they are Multi-Racial. Students with specific learning disabilities make up approximately 18 percent of our population. Our student mobility rate, those moving in or out of our district during the school year, is averaging 23 percent.

All Reedsport School District classes are taught by highly qualified teachers, as monitored by Oregon Teachers Standards and Practices Commission, and as denoted by their current licenses and registrations for public school teaching. Last year, the average teaching experience in our school district is 15 years.

Conclusion – I believe the Reedsport school community is supportive of the public education system in our community. Based on my experience as a visiting educator in the early 1990’s and having been the district superintendent since February 2016, three decades later, there are distinct socioeconomic differences in our community. I believe our most important work must be to better understand the changing needs of our students and families. We must provide students with educational rigor, in the context of relevance to their experiences. Above all, we must develop positive rapport with parents and positive relationships with students if we expect to help all students achieve academic and social success – I believe this is our most critical school improvement challenge. Please contact me at 541-271-3656 or at dforbess@reedsport.k12.or.us if you have any questions about your Reedsport School District. Thank you!

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Umpqua Post Editor