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Oregon: Working in Education in Oregon

This list also contains online schools that accept students from Oregon

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Technology Education

Oregon Virtual School District (ORVSD) is a free resource for online teaching and learning designed to promote Oregon's virtual schools and integrate technology in classrooms. It offers lesson plans, professional development and other training, and help creating online courses. In addition to providing teacher resources, ORVSD enables students to supplement their educations with online classes.

A one-year moratorium on the establishment or growth of online public schools will allow a task force to write rules to govern the virtual schools in Oregon.

All sixth-graders at three Oregon middle schools will receive free laptops in an effort to improve test scores and better prepare students for today’s world. If the pilot proves successful and the legislature provides additional funding, the program could be expanded. The program uses donated, district, and state funds to pay for the laptops, associated software, accessories, and teacher training. At least one private school in the state requires upper school students to purchase their own laptops through the school.

Educational Management

Oregon views school and district leadership as essential to closing the achievement gap. The Oregon Department of Education participates in the Wallace Foundation's national leadership initiative, from which the Oregon Leadership Network formed. The Oregon Leadership Network is part of a nationwide effort to improve the learning and achievement of students through education leadership.

According to a survey of education in the states sponsored by the U.S. Chambers of Commerce and the Center for American Progress, Oregon does a below-average job managing its schools in a way that encourages innovation. Oregon receives an average score on its ability to remove under-achieving teachers from the classroom. Fifty-six percent of Oregon principals who responded to the survey reported that tenure is a barrier to removing poor-performing teachers.

Applicants for principal positions in Portland schools must:

  • Hold or be eligible to hold an Oregon administrative license by the first assigned workday,
  • Have a master's degree or greater in education,
  • Have minimum of five years of successful K-12 educational leadership experience (ideally including a minimum of three years in a school-based administrator position), and
  • Have three years of successful school experience as a licensed professional.

Teacher's Aides

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean annual salary for Oregon's nearly 20,000 teacher assistants was $26,460, higher than the U.S. mean of $23,560.

Special education paraeducator substitutes in Portland schools must have a high school diploma or GED, two years of college education, experience with children and/or special needs, good communication skills, and First Aid and CPR certification (or the ability to obtain them).

Curriculum and Instruction

Oregon's Academic Content Standards identify what students in the state are expected to know and be able to do in eight content areas. Oregon is participating in developing a common core of standards in English language arts and mathematics for all states.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates the mean annual wage for instructional coordinators in Oregon in May 2008 was $60,720, slightly higher than the nationwide mean of $59,780.

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