Celebrating graduation, language arts teacher recognized for excellence
Celebrating graduation, language arts teacher recognized for excellence
The Gresham-Barlow School District
Employee Newsletter
June 2023
Superintendent James Hiu and his daughter at her high school graduation
2022-23 was a school year of many accomplishments
Our greatest accomplishment is celebrated at each graduation ceremony
In the spring of 2022, we surveyed staff to find out which coworkers they appreciate and why. Watch for these exceptional individuals highlighted on social media and in issues of the Insider throughout the school year!
GBSD staff appreciation awards with Superintendent James Hiu
Gordon Russell Middle School (GRMS) teacher Michelle Fulsher recognized as an Oregon Council of Teachers of English (OCTE) Teacher of Excellence
Portrait of Michelle Fulsher
GRMS eighth grade language arts teacher Michelle Fulsher was selected by the OCTE as one of two 2023 Teachers of Excellence. The award is open to any language arts teacher across the state who has a “particularly noteworthy” teaching record, demonstrating excellence in the classroom. Fulsher is a veteran teacher who shares her passion and joy of language arts with her students every day. She has also earned her National Board Certification and supports her colleagues in learning. Ms. Fulsher is a language arts educator that makes a difference to her students. To learn more about her award, visit the OCTE website
Language arts teachers collaborate with a focus on equitable access to rigorous curriculum
5 6th grade language arts teachers sitting around a table wokrking
In May, the 6th grade language arts teachers continued the work of drafting the beginning of a 6-12 scope and sequence, supported by the District’s new language arts adoption. Their work centered the needs of their incoming middle school students. As 6th grade LA teachers, this team understands the important role that both they - and their course - play for their students. Their work required commitment to collaboration and was focused on equitable access to a rigorous curriculum. Great work, team!
Dual Language Immersion Program comes to life through new recruitment video
The GBSD Communications Team created a recruitment video designed to help Spanish speaking families learn about the District’s Dual Language Immersion Program. 
GBSD’s DLI Program is committed to graduating bicultural and bi-literate students who sustain high levels of academic achievement in both languages and are sociocultural competent individuals who will thrive in an ever-changing global community.
Learn more about the DLI Program
Congratulations to GBSD Retirees
7 GBSD retirees with Superintendent James Hiu
Congratulations goes out to all of our 2023 retirees. We honored our retirees at our “New Beginnings” celebration which recognized retirees and educators who have moved from probationary to contract status!  Thank you, retirees, for your many years of service to our entire community. A list of all retirees will soon be posted on the GBSD Website. 
Two students at table using blocks at math night
Families practice priority math standards and language that supports understanding math concepts
More than 100 families attend
3 staff members looking at one staff member holding up
A year of supporting teachers learning from teachers and students learning from students
Coaches facilitate modeling lessons, professional learning, and innovative uses of technology
Members of the board, superintendent James Hiu, and members of OSEA posing for a group picture
At the June 7 school board meeting, the GBSD Board of Directors approved the tentative agreement for July 1, 2023-June 30, 2026 between the Gresham-Barlow School District and the Oregon School Employees Association (OSEA). The new collective bargaining agreement was signed that night. The OSEA and the District used an interest-based approach to negotiations. This approach focuses negotiations teams on determining shared interests and working collaboratively together to identify solutions based on those interests.
Two GHS students in front of their project at science fair
Students from Oregon and around the world compete head-to-head
Competition provides opportunities for students to interact with each other and other STEM professionals
GBSD staff members sitting in council chambers watching Gloria Hull speak
Wellness program celebration recognized work of building coordinators 
Site activities represented the five components of wellness: physical, social, emotional, financial, and purpose
Instruction Spotlight:
Sam Barlow High School
Amanda Gibson’s Art 1 Class
Clay monster designs by Amanda Gibson's art class
Students in Sam Barlow High School teacher Amanda Gibson’s Art 1 class get to experience clay, which for most is the first time with this medium. Students learn all about the clay, kiln, glazes and so much more while being actively engaged in the process of creation. This year the class used their own creativity to construct monsters of their own design. Students in the class who want to move forward can continue next year with an entire class on sculpture. Gibson is very thankful that “we have a school with the resources and supports to offer amazing classes and supplies to students, and look forward to the art department growing and continuing to make amazing pieces of art.”
3 students looking at project on table
Bus brings STEAM experiences to students
Instructional coaches lead students in engaging classroom content that ties in core curriculum with STEAM
AVID Excel Night
It was a packed house for the May 2 AVID Excel Night at Gresham High School. At the annual event, incoming 6th grade students participated in an informational meeting to learn about the program and get support completing their applications.
AVID students and incoming 6 graders sitting at tables at GHS library
GBEF logo
Foundation receives $22,275 donation from Tokola Properties to support literacy
Scramble for Students golf tournament scheduled for August 21
  • License renewals
    We are coming towards the end of another academic year, please make sure you are paying attention to your licenses and when they need to be renewed. Login to your TSPC accounts to check and keep track. It will cost you more money and penalties, if your licenses lapse and there isn't a grace period when you are in the classroom.

  • Edustaff
    If you have people interested in subbing for the district, please have them apply online at www.Edustaff.org.

  • Leave requests
    Please make sure that you are submitting your leave requests to your building supervisor before you take your time off.  All paid and unpaid leave needs to be approved by your supervisor before being submitted.

  • Information changes
    Please make sure if you have any information changes that you contact Human Resources to have them changed within our systems such as address, name changes (with social security card changes only), phone numbers, etc.

  • Colonial Life
    GBSD is moving from American Fidelity to Colonial Life for supplemental benefits. Employees that are currently American Fidelity policy holders should reach out to a Colonial Life rep or HR for guidance. 403(b) annuity plans through American Fidelity will be unaffected. Policies through Aflac and The Standard will also be unaffected. The switch will happen Oct 1.

  • Professional Development
    The district is moving forward with a new prepayment program for Professional Development. An updated Professional Development form will soon be available on the HR forms webpage which will include the prepayment choice. All PD requests from classified and licensed staff should continue to be submitted to HR.
GRMS cafeteria workers in front of sign that says
In honor of School Lunch Hero Day, the students and staff of Gordon Russell Middle School celebrated their heroes—-the GRMS cafeteria workers! 
Karen Harshfield reading her book to two students at a desk
Our staff members are authors!
Counselor Karen Harshfield recently read to students at East Gresham Elementary School from her newly published book, “How I Taught My Brain that I Am in Charge.” 
Bus drivers holding giant bus cards
Powell Valley Elementary School staff celebrated their hard-working bus drivers with giant bus cards!  Thank you, bus drivers, for all you do!
Dates to remember
  • June 12-15: High School Exams
  • June 12: Last Day for 8th grade
  • June 13: Sam Barlow HS Graduation
  • June 13: Gresham HS Gradaution
  • June 14: Last Day for students grades K-7
  • June 15: K-8 Grading Day, No School 
  • June 15: Last Day of school for grades 9-11
  • June 16: Elementary & Middle Schools Teacher Work Day, High School Grading Day
  • June 20: School Board Work Session
  • July 5: School Board Work Session
  • July 5: School Board Business Meeting
  • August  25: Board Strategic Planning Retreat
Inspire and Empower Each Student
Questions or Comments? Contact Athena Vadnais
gbsdcommunications@gresham.k12.or.us | 503-261-4550
Gresham-Barlow School District recognizes the diversity and worth of all individuals and groups.  It is the policy of this district and the board of education that there will be no discrimination or harassment of individuals or groups in any educational programs, activities or employment. 
Gresham-Barlow provides equal access to individuals with disabilities.  

Publication of The Insider constitutes official notification to employees of the
Gresham-Barlow School District
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