The Wilsonville City Council hosted a joint meeting with the West Linn-Wilsonville School District Board of Directors on Feb. 12 at City Hall. The periodic meeting of both community leadership bodies serves as a catalyst for continued collaboration between the two local governments, facilitating cooperation and long-range planning for the benefit of residents and their school-age children.
A brief welcome by Wilsonville Mayor Tim Knapp preceded introductions of the City Council, the School Board and staff from both agencies. Dr. Kathy Ludwig, Superintendent of the West Linn-Wilsonville School District, presented the district’s mission and goals. Her presentation, “Leading Together,” highlighted several joint projects with the City and detailed the district’s ongoing research to study educational program designs, collect data and community input. This work helps the school leadership understand the needs of tech-savvy “Generation Z” students, who may be one day pursuing jobs that don’t yet exist. The presentation generated conversation about finding opportunities for collaboration on internships with local businesses and other opportunities to help students develop clearer career pathways.
Dr. Ludwig and Board Chair Ginger Fitch detailed the challenges the district faces in providing mental health support and services to students, and the role that civic and community involvement play in providing in effective mental health care. The conversation included discussion of Safe Oregon Tip Line, a resource that allows anonymous reporting of safety concerns, bullying, harassment, or possible suicidal thoughts via email, phone, text messages, the Safe Oregon mobile app or web portal. More information about Safe Oregon is available at http://safeoregon.com/.
City staff updates included an overview from Finance Director Susan Cole on the effects of City’s Year 2000 Urban Renewal District on the School District’s local option levy, detailing the financial impact of property tax “compression” on the School District’s tax collection. Community Development Director Nancy Kraushaar detailed upcoming projects, including the proposed bridge to eliminate the “Boeckman Dip” to address safety and connectivity in the developing Frog Pond area, which includes the new Meridian Creek Middle School.
Transit Director Dwight Brashear detailed plans for additional staffing that would allow SMART to provide support for local implementation of the Regional Transit Options program, as well as the Oregon Safe Routes to School initiative. Planning Director Chris Neamtzu provided a snapshot of recent development trends and detailed the impact of development of the Frog Pond west and south areas, comprised of 280 acres for an Urban Growth Boundary expansion by Metro regional government.
The meeting concluded with comments from members of both the District Board and City Council reiterating their appreciation for the positive and collaborative partnership that benefits students, their families and community members.
Community members can watch a replay of all or a portion of the joint meeting on Comcast/Xfinity Ch. 30, Frontier Ch. 32 or on the City’s video-on-demand service at www.ci.wilsonville.or.us/WilsonvilleTV.