During the 2019 session, the Oregon legislature passed a law called the Student Success Act. This act represents a historic investment in K-12 education. In addition to targeted investments, these funds also provide school districts additional resources through the Student Investment Account.

As part of the ongoing work through the support of this funding, SKPS has established a Student Investment Account committee. This committee oversees the commitment of the SIA to serve students in the district through improved access to academic resources, restorative behavioral practices and the importance of mental health

SIA Committee – October meeting update

By Dara Elkanah

The meeting started with acknowledging Indigenous People’s Day on October 10, and reading the Land Acknowledgement. This day, now officially a state of Oregon holiday, recognizes the important contributions and resilience that Oregon’s first peoples brought to this land.

Meeting Summary

The committee focused on multiple in-depth strategies for an impactful education atmosphere for SKPS students. There are 11 total strategies. Each one is an elaborate action plan with resources to improve in the specific area.

When the district moved from comprehensive distance learning to in-person instruction, five-days a week, the majority of students displayed developmental and behavioral gaps that led to learning struggles. These gaps need to be addressed for students to succeed. The committee will determine solutions to address these challenges.

Before concluding the meeting, facilitators asked, “What would equity look and feel like once fully achieved?”

The committee gave a variety of responses. One response, in particular, stood out: ‘My culture is not left at the door.’

Although people may feel unrepresented through people in their school environment, they felt represented through posters, flags and clubs. This equitable experience should be felt by all members of the community for years to come.

At the upcoming November meeting, New York University will provide a recap of the 2020 SKPS Audit from 2020 focused on safe and welcoming schools.

Dara Elkanah

Dara Elkanah

Dara Elkanah is a senior at South Salem High School. She specializes in community outreach as a student intern with the Salem-Keizer Public Schools Community Relations and Communications department.