By Paul Daquilante • Staff Writer • 

Sheridan schools receive wellness results

SHERIDAN — Superintendent Steve Sugg discussed with the Sheridan School Board Wednesday night the results of a statewide wellness survey given last spring to sixth, eighth and 11th grade students. Information was provided on a voluntary basis.

In the Sheridan district, 45 sixth graders, 52 eighth graders and 41 eleventh graders participated. Topics included fighting, physical health, mental health, positive youth development, problem gambling, school climate, substance use and other problem behaviors.

On the positive side, more than 80 percent of students said they respected their teachers, about 90 percent said they had many opportunities to be involved in daily activities, and the same number reported they were in good to excellent health.

Sugg said definite areas of improvement were identified, however, based on the following:

Less than 65 percent of students feel they can talk to teachers openly and freely about concerns, less than 50 percent like school, less than 40 percent feel school work is meaningful, less than 30 percent indicate their parents monitor their homework assignments and more than 50 percent said they’d been harassed in the past 30 days alone.

In other business:

* Twelve locations throughout the district underwent lead testing, but only one, the old gym at Faulconer Chapman, tested at an unsatisfactory level.

Alternative drinking water will be be available at the gym until the issue is resolved. Possible solutions include replacing fixtures and/or adding filters.

* The district is preparing a radon testing plan. The 2015 Legislature passed a House Bill so that elevated radon levels in Oregon schools could be identified.

Under the statute, districts must develop a plan to accurately measure school buildings for elevated radon levels. It must be submitted to the Oregon Health Authority by Sept. 1, 2016. Actual testing of schools must be done on or before Jan. 1, 2021.

* The board ratified a three-year classified contract previously approved by the membership.

The agreement calls for a 2.5 percent pay increase this year, and raises of between 2 and 3 percent in the final two years of the contract, based on Portland’s Consumer Price Index.

* The board named Jeff Ashlock chair for 2016-17, succeeding Judy Breeden. It named Larry Deibel vice-chair.

The board will meet next at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 21.