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New classrooms at Periwinkle will make space for higher enrollment

Posted on: September 1, 2016

This week, workers placed a five-section, four-classroom modular building at Periwinkle Elementary School. The new classrooms will make room for student enrollment growth that has exceeded classroom capacity at the school.

The classrooms, which will house fifth-grade students, will be ready after school starts. Two classes are scheduled to occupy the space. They will meet in the school library until the new classrooms are ready. The projected completion date is the second week of school.

The remaining work includes connecting internet, electricity, water and sewer and finishing the roof, heating and ventilation systems.

Don’t miss back-to-school night at your school

Posted on: August 31, 2016

Back-to-school nights and open houses are an important part of the new school year. Each school hosts a kick-off event to welcome students and parents and provide important information to start the year smoothly.

School Open House Schedule:

Aug. 31

  • Layfayette Elementary

Sept. 1

  • Central/Takena Elementary
  • Clover Ridge Elementary
  • Fir Grove/Oak Grove Elementary
  • Liberty Elementary
  • North Albany Elementary
  • Oak Elementary
  • Periwinkle Elementary
  • South Shore Elementary
  • Sunrise Elementary
  • Tangent Elementary
  • Timber Ridge 3-8
  • Waverly Elementary

Sept. 7

  • South Albany High School Cafeteria Tours and Open House

Sept. 12

  • West Albany High School

Sept. 22

  • Calapooia Middle
  • Memorial Middle
  • North Albany Middle

Sept. 24

  • South Albany High School Cafeteria Tours and Open House

Sept. 27

  • Albany Options High School

Oct. 3

  • South Albany High School Student and Parent Open House

For more information, check with your school.

See updated lead results on water testing page

Posted on: August 31, 2016

GAPS submitted water samples for lead testing at all schools and facilities this summer. The labs are returning results as fast as possible but have high demand from school districts around the state.

We are repairing and then retesting all fixtures with elevated lead levels. Any fixture with tests showing elevated lead levels will be kept out of service until tests show that they no longer exceed allowable lead levels set by the EPA.

Read the latest update about water tests for each school.

Volunteers make kid-friendly improvements at Lafayette Elementary

Posted on: August 30, 2016

A school learning environment can make a big difference in how well students do at school. Last weekend, a group of volunteers that included Superintendent Jim Golden rolled up their sleeves to clean up the courtyard and paint new picnic tables at Lafayette Elementary School. Superintendent Golden said the goal was to make the space more welcoming to students. See the before and after pictures.

Most schools in the Greater Albany School District were built before 1970 and are showing their age. Lafayette was built in 1960. See building ages for GAPS schools.

The School Board has been discussing a possible bond measure for next spring that would make maintenance improvements at existing schools and modernize learning space for today’s educational requirements.

Community members will have a chance to hear about the plans and provide input at a series of community forums scheduled for October. See the District calendar for more information.

Rested and ready: Staff walk and rally kick off new school year

Posted on: August 30, 2016

The annual back-to-school staff rally included a first-ever walk from West to South this morning. Superintendent Jim Golden planned the event in an effort to emphasize wellness and start the year in a fun way.

It also gave staff a chance to connect with their peers. “Staff need to talk,” he said. “Walking and talking go well together.”

All GAPS licensed and classified staff made the 2.6 mile hike between schools. GAPS employs about 1,050 staff members. In addition, School Board members Jerry Boehme, Sandy Gordon, Micah Smith and Lyle Utt attended.

The event ended at the new South Albany High School cafeteria, which was the first look at the finished space for most staff. The group gathered in the commons area to hear brief motivational speeches by Superintendent Jim Golden, Albany Public Schools Foundation President Bob Stalick, School Board Chair Micah Smith and Sue McGrory, President of the Greater Albany Education Foundation.

Stalick recognized the community and business contributions that helped make the new cafeteria possible. Board Chair Smith stressed preparedness for readying students to succeed in school and post graduation and in reference to a potential spring bond measure to renovate schools and add classroom space.

“This is a pivotal year in Greater Albany Public Schools,” he said. “We must prepare for the demands of tomorrow’s education. We have a growing district, and we must prepare as students, parents, business owners and stakeholders. It’s going to be an action-packed school year, and it begins today.”

Sue McGrory wrapped up the speeches. She thanked the school board for working in a collaborative partnership, and she shared basic beliefs about education in the district. “I believe every student in Albany, regardless of family income, deserves a quality education,” she said.