I hope everyone is having a great summer in spite of all of the heat, fires and smoke. I am grateful for all of the personnel who are helping control these fires.

Summer is half over and we are on the way to another school year! I wanted to give you a few updates of the happenings.

If you get a chance to look at the schools, there is much progress towards summer maintenance. OJSHS is a bit delayed as I mentioned earlier due to firefighters utilizing it as a command station. I am sure you all agree it is worth the sacrifice to have so many folks helping with the fires.

District Office will soon be combined with Programs Office at the Program Office location on Riverside Avenue. We have searched for an alternative economical and feasible solution but to no avail. I am super excited to have our leadership team centrally combined. Stay tuned for when that happens. We anticipate the move happening in late July or early August. Until then, the District Office will remain in the same location on Michigan Avenue.

IDYCA will be receiving students beginning Saturday. This means part of our staff will be back at it in just a very short amount of time. I wish them the best of luck and give them our full support as they are a great part of JSD171.

The Timberline classroom build is still in the works. We plan to take another try at it on Monday night at our board meeting. Hopefully we will be able to solicit bids for the foundation and groundwork for this summer and fall. Getting this completed will put us one step closer to completion and make it much more of a reasonable timeline to finish during the summer months. In the meantime, unfortunately, we will still be utilizing the mobile units for this upcoming year. Not my favorite option, but definitely grateful to have space for the students to learn and the instructors to teach.

The board and I will be working towards setting goals for the upcoming year. The Continuous Improvement Plan has a few changes we will be addressing in the upcoming meetings. These clearly stated goals will become part of the goals of each building. In turn, this will allow focused areas to be addressed for improvement. I am excited to implement this process and benefit from the results.

The summer reading programs are underway at the Pierce and Weippe libraries. From the last report there have been numerous students utilizing these free and fun programs. We are glad to help out with the funding through state grants. Contact either location for details. OES will have a similar program the few weeks prior to school starting.

I have been able to be a part of a great group of individuals who have put hours into securing and utilizing the Blue Cross Foundation High Five Grant of Orofino, which encourages youth healthy lifestyles. The grant money is used to help support sustainable activities and foods for our Orofino youth. The OES community garden is just one example of how the funds are utilized. Education and recreation are also funded. Application and ideas can be submitted through one of your members. We will be sending out a simple form explaining our goals and how to submit ideas. This money will go to great use for our community youth.

July is the month when most of our staff is unavailable. Our district office and programs office staff try to take some time for themselves during this period as well. We try to have the office open daily with sometimes minimal staff. We appreciate everyone allowing us to recharge a bit and prepare for the upcoming year.

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