Newspaper Archive of
Hells Canyon Journal
Halfway, Oregon
April 23, 2014     Hells Canyon Journal
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April 23, 2014

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SMALLTOWNPAPERS 217 WEST COTA STREET SHELTON WA 98584 oooo % Pine Eagle School Board Vacant Board and Budget Positions Filled by Linda Bergeron of the Hells Canyon Journal At the regular meeting of the Pine Eagle School Board on April 14, the board unani- mously approved the appoint- ment of Michelle Butner (Pine Valley) to position six in response to the resigna- tion of director Bill Johnson last month. She was duly sworn in. Also, the board gave its unanimous approval of two new Budget Committee mem- bers, Cassandra Thomas (Eagle Valley) and LeeAnn Jensen (Irondyke), and the reappointment of Ron Hunter to that committee. Vice-chair John Minarich, acting in chairman Bob Seal's absence, read the board's evaluation of the Superinten- dent Mike Corley into the record. Using the same evaluation tool it had used the previous year, the board gave an overall performance rating of 4.5 (based on the range of one as Unacceptable, and five as Outstanding) for nine different standards. The three highest scores (4.8 each) were rated on lead- ership and district culture, policy and governance, and values and ethics of leader- ship. Secondary scores were safety/security, as well as the property concerns of getting back a custodian at the high school building and increas- ing property insurance. Among the improvements, eight identified projects range from $1,850 for stor- age cabinets in the Crow's Nest to parking lot repairs for both asphalt ($55,000) and gravel ($2,500). The West Bell Street house, which the dis- trict owns, is in need of roof and siding work ($16,000). In the middle range are side- walk repairs, playground fin- ishing, installation of the sprinkler system, and video- audio equipment for the gym. These possible capital im- provements add up to $94,000. Retrofitting the fire alarms at the high school and pri- mary buildings would total $12,500, with a district-wide intruder alert system costing about $7,000, and an up- graded communications sys- tem close to $21,000. Thatcher stressed the ne- cessity of planning to in or- der to accomplish the main- tenance issues"for the future of buildings, grounds, and facilities." He suggested fi- nancing such projects through either the budget process or bonding. for labor relations, organiza- Minarich's suggestion was tional management and hu-+to estimate numbers for the man resources management. See page 6 of this issue for the full statement. Safety Committee Maintenance Supervisor and committee lead Shawn Thatcher provided an update. Certified teacher Morgan Gover had "joined the team," Thatcher told the board. The committee met recently to review their draft proposal, which they will bring before the board. During the week of spring break the new fire alarm panel was installed, and plans are to install the re- lated peripheral equipment during the summer months. The intention is to have, by fall, both school buildings wired with the same system and intercom so alerts can be activated from any location. Thatcher said that Minarich had completed the installation of over half of the cameras so far, utilizing stu- dent involvement. Minarich good-naturedly commented on the challenges and expec- tations of working with stu- dents. Cassandra Thomas wanted to know if there was a communication plan for alerting parents should a threat occur, and Minarich explained that the committee's plan, which is being worked on, "has the protocols which address that concern." Capital Improvements Corley handed out a list of potential maintenance and repair projects, divided into capital improvements and .... ."a  HELLS CANYON JOURNAL Box 646 Halfway, OR :.. _.. 97834 1-742-7900 projects, and plan for the level of financing that would be required. Thatcher was in agreement and brought up the possible reality of "hun- dreds of thousands of dollars." Both directors Mark Butler and Dave schmitt called for a snapshot of each project and a priority standing. Corley pointed out that in the past the Budget Commit- tee used to make an annual tour of district facilities, sug- gesting that the board may want that done again. The board indicated that may be a Budget Committee item to consider. Biomass Visits Thatcher said that five members of that committee visited the Merlo Ranch in Ukiah, about eight miles off the interstate. The facility, founded by a former lumber- man with tree lot experience, produces quality chips (and currently supplies the school district in Enterprise for its operation, which consumes about 600 tons per year). A Pine Eagle operation, Thatcher estimates, would utilize close to 200 tons an- nually. The committee has previ- ously visited operations in Council, Idaho and in Wallowa - visits Thatcher said he considers valuable for the opportunity to observe installation and operations. He noted the wide variety of chips delivered- from saw- dust with chunks of wood in it, to a more shredded type of chip, to solid chips available through Merlo. It was his suggestion that the board schedule a work session to specifically discuss and determine whether or not to move forward on a project, or table it. Thatcher commented to this reporter, "I can see that the quality and type of chip determines the success... I feel like we're in a good posi- tion to make a decision. We have enough information that we can ask the right ques- tions which pertain to our Continued on page 6 Hells,1 75 Per Copy ) Halfway, Oregon 97834 Perfect Saturday to Hunt for Easter Eggs Photo courtesy of Tami Waldron ON ONE OF THE WARMEST DAYS OF THE YEAR, youngsters in both valleys had a chance to hunt Easter eggs, at Hewitt Park (above) and the Pine Eagle School campus (below). Organized by the Baker County Parks Department in Eagle Valley and the Halfway Lions Club in Pine Valley, the Easter egg hunts are both longstanding traditions. Photo by Steve Backstrom F'ine Eagle Senior Revives Handprint (00uilting Tradition as Her Senior Project by Hayley Sanders of the Hells Canyon Journal One of Ida Thompson's fa- vorite memories from her preschool days is her mother, Dorothy, making a quilt with the handprints from her and each of her classmates. Dor- othy made a preschool class quilt for Ida and each of her sisters, but after they all moved on to elementary school the handprint quilts stopped. Now a senior at Pine Eagle High School, Ida chose to re- vive the handprint quilt tra- dition as her final Senior Project, and will be raffling off the quilt to raise money for Pine Eagle Preschool. Just like she remembered doing years ago, last May, Ida went down to the pre- school with some 12x12 cloth squares and fabric paint. Each preschooler got to pick a color from seven different shades of pink, purple, blue, green, or orange. Each child's handprints were then pre- served in fabric paint on a square, along with their name. Because not all the kids were at school that day, Ida had to arrange to get some of the handprints at a later date. In all there are 18 sets of handprints; 17 students and one from preschool teacher Brenda Durr. Ida knew the basics of op- erating a sewing machine, but had never made a quilt before, so she asked Quilts Plus proprietor, Roberta Bryan, to be her community i Photo by Hayley Sanders IDA THOMPSON with her newly made handprint quilt, with handprints from local preschool students. The quilt willbe raffled off this week to benefit Pine Eagle Preschool. mentor for the project. Roberta helped her select color combinations, cut the fabric, and put the quilt to- gether, a process that took about a month and a half to complete. The result is a colorful and endearing quilt that will bring back fond memories for children and their families and friends long after the preschool days are over. The finished quilt is approxi- mately seven feet long and five feet wide, with a class photograph featured in the center. Before completing the pre- sentation for her Senior Project this month, Ida will be raffling off her quilt and donating the proceeds to the Pine Eagle Preschool. The drawing is scheduled for April 25. Raffle tickets are $1 each or 6 for $5, and can be pur- chased by giving Ida Thomp- son a call at 541-220-8488 or 541-742-4344.