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School Board approves bond proposal for May election

Posted on: January 23, 2017

The School Board unanimously voted to send a $159 million bond measure to voters in the May 16, 2017, election.

The measure would:

  • Make upgrades and improvements, including replacing roofs, siding, windows, plumbing, electrical systems in schools around the District.
  • Make energy improvements, including replacing old, inefficient high maintenance heating/ventilation systems, doors, which would save energy costs.
  • Make safety/security upgrades, including automatic door locks, fire alarms, security cameras to improve the safety of students.
  • Make seismic upgrades to enable buildings to better withstand earthquakes.
  • Renovate and/or add classroom space to support vocational/technical classes for all district middle school buildings.
  • Renovate and add classrooms and a cafeteria at Oak Grove Elementary School; purchase property and construct a new elementary school in NE Albany to address growing enrollment and reduce overcrowding.
  • Complete the first phase of West Albany High School’s rebuild that would include new classrooms, commons, auditorium, cafeteria and administrative space; and multipurpose space for vocational/technical education and gymnasium uses at South Albany High School.

The bond proposal is the result of a more than two-year process to identify facility needs in the District. The projects were reviewed by architects and recommended by a community-based District Facilities Advisory Committee (DFAC) that was made up of community members, parents and staff members.

DFAC initially identified more than $250 million in facility needs. This proposal represents the School Board’s priority to balance the most critical needs and the cost to taxpayers. This bond proposal is expected to increase taxes by an estimated $.64 per $1,000 of assessed property value because the 2006 bond is expiring.

For more information, read the resolution and explanatory statement. 

Find more information on the bond information page.

Attention teachers: Apply for a classroom grant

Posted on: September 20, 2017

Applications are open for the 2017-18 Albany Public Schools Foundation classroom grants.

Each fall, the Albany Public Schools Foundation accepts grant applications from teachers in the Greater Albany Public School District for innovative programs, tools and supplies supporting enrichment opportunities for students in the areas of art, music, science and health/wellness.

Grants are due on Oct. 13 and applications are open to all GAPS teachers.

Download the application.
Find more information on the Albany Public Schools Foundation website.

AOS Welcomes Dr. Lake for Staff Professional Development

Posted on: September 6, 2017

Superintendent Jim Golden spoke to the whole district on Monday, August 28th, during the Back-to-School District Rally, about the importance of breaking down the barriers of race in our culture and schools. In sticking with the theme, the teachers and staff at Albany Options School and district administrators spent the morning of Wednesday, August 30th meeting with Dr. Johnny Lake. Dr. Lake kicked off the school year talking about diversity, race and culture, and equity of learning.

Dr. Lake is an internationally renowned trainer and consultant, and has taught as a professor in the teacher and counseling preparation programs at Northwest Christian University in Eugene. He is an Administrator on Special Assignment with the Eugene 4J school district. Dr. Lake holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Willamette University, has a Masters in educational leadership and administration, and received his Ph.D. in educational leadership, policy, management and organization. Dr. Lake is a former chairman of the State of Oregon Commission on Black Affairs.

Dr. Lake is an incredible speaker and left the staff feeling motivated, inspired, and excited to take on the challenges of the new school year. Principal John Hunter commented that, “Equity of Learning is paramount to the success of all students. It is not just a catchy phrase, it is a necessity, and Dr. Lake was able to bring that to a human and personal level that every teacher in the building can bring back to the classroom with them.”

Mark Wolfe, with 25 years in public education, was extremely inspired by Dr. Lake’s presentation. “After listening to Johnny Lake, I realized that even with all my years of experience there’s still so much I can do to be a better teacher.” In fact, Mr. Wolfe said that on his second day of his Psychology class this term he implemented a group activity that he learned from Dr. Lake.

Air Quality Information

Posted on: September 5, 2017

Wildfires around the state have affected air quality in our region. Conditions are not expected to improve this week, and the National Weather Service has issued an Air Quality alert through Friday.

We are watching for air quality updates and will announce any changes to school activities and programs based on recommendations from the Oregon Health Authority guidelines for outdoor activities and the Oregon School Activities Association.

Decisions on school closures will be made in consultation with the Linn County Health Department.

If you have questions, check with your school. Find more information:

Air quality index chart

Watch for school buses starting next Tuesday

Posted on: September 1, 2017

Tuesday, Sept. 5, is the first day of school for students in Greater Albany schools, and about a third of them travel there by school bus.

Last year, GAPS yellow buses traveled more than 959,000 miles, carrying a daily average of 3,600 kids each way on 37 general education routes and 18 special education routes. That number doesn’t include field trips and transportation for school activities, which totaled an estimated 50,000 miles in 1,256 trips.

It’s a large transportation system that requires careful planning to make the buses run on time.

This year, extra attention and planning was needed to adjust schedules for efficiency for the new bell time system. Each bus covers three routes for morning and afternoon runs. Combined with a finite number of buses and drivers, the routes have to be exact to ensure best coverage of our geographically large district.

Watch for our buses this Tuesday and please be extra attentive in the mornings and afternoons when you see them on the roads. District bus drivers would like to remind drivers to slow down and watch for kids as they walk to or from the bus.

Transportation resources for parents include:

Thank you, GAPS bus drivers!

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