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Redmond schools set to begin year with new teachers, programs


The Redmond School District kicks off the 2018-19 school year on Tuesday, Sept. 4, with grades second through sixth and ninth grade beginning classes. All other grades, except for kindergarten and first grade, begin school on Wednesday, Sept. 5. First graders begin on Thursday, Sept. 6 and Redmond Early Learning Center kindergartners begin a staggered start on Monday, Sept. 10 through Wednesday, Sept. 12.

“I’m very excited about the school year ahead and our district’s many opportunities to positively impact the lives of our students,” Superintendent Mike McIntosh said.

On Tuesday, Aug. 28, McIntosh addressed all district employees at a breakfast sponsored by Redmond Rotary and co-sponsored by Mid Oregon Credit Union and OnPoint Community Credit Union, where he emphasized a theme of hope and attentiveness to students who otherwise may end up neglected and shuffled through the system.

“Every single person in this gym has an important part to play in the upcoming months as we help shape young people’s lives and provide opportunities for them to receive a high quality education,” McIntosh said to the gathered employees.

The 2018-19 school year brings changes to the Edwin Brown Education Center, now known as StepUP at the Edwin Brown Education Center. StepUP is a collaboration of many programs, serving students kindergarten through 21 years old. The programming at StepUP includes the Transition Program for students 18-21 years old working on independent living and job readiness skills. The NextSTEPS Program serves students who have been expelled from Redmond School District. Students with significant social/emotional/behavioral needs will be served in their Social Emotional Learning programs.

“Significant restructuring will be evident in the programming at StepUP and through the addition of supported transitions and ongoing problem solving support with StepUP and home campus team members,” said Karen Mitchell, program supervisor for StepUP. “This year will be one with a lot of exciting changes and support for both students and team members.”

The district has also expanded its AVID (Advanced Via Individual Determination) College Readiness Program to Redmond High School, Terrebonne Community School and Obsidian Middle School. The program helps develop skills, habits and mindsets prepare for higher education, including goal setting, career exploration and independent learner traits. Ridgeview High School and Elton Gregory Middle School began AVID implementation in 2015 and have been pleased with the results over the past three years, according to Tracie Renwick, Director of Secondary Education for the district.

“Our partnership with AVID has resulted in opportunities for exceptional professional development for teachers, as well as tangible outcomes in the classroom,” Renwick said. “The school-wide implementation of AVID strategies empower students to develop future-mindedness, solid plans for life after graduation, and habits that will open doors.”

Renwick explained that educators benefit from resources that heighten rigor in content area instruction, and reinforce the value of high level student dialogue.

This year, AVID elective classes will serve over 200 secondary students with targeted curriculum aimed at effective note-taking and study skills, becoming confident communicators, and success in rigorous courses.

The district recently inducted 50 new educators during a four-day period where they learned about district culture, district office support team members and benefits. On day one, the new educators were given a school bus tour of the district led by Superintendent McIntosh and treated to a lunch spread at his Terrebonne ranch. The remaining three days were packed full of information and tools to prepare them for the first day of school and the 2018-19 school year.

“We have an amazing district team from teachers to bus drivers, who wake up every day focused on serving our kids and providing them with the tools to be successful,” McIntosh said. “I’m thrilled to lead this forward-looking group into another amazing year for Redmond schools.”

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