17625 SE Foster Rd
Gresham, Oregon 97080
Principal: Laura Nixon
Lead Secretary: Penny Close
Secretary: Kayla Neill
“A school with deep historical roots, a unique environment, an experienced staff and high-performing students.”
A quick look
Enrollment – 419 students in kindergarten through 6th grade for the 2018-2019 school year.
Student-teacher ratio – 27:1
15 classroom teachers, 1 Special Ed Teacher, 1.0 ELL Teachers, 1 Counselor, 1 PE Teacher, 1 Music Teacher, .6 Speech/Language Pathologist, .5 School Psychologist.
2 Secretaries, and 1.5 Custodians. Part time personnel include: 2 – .25 Records Managers, 6 Educational Assistants, 1 ELL Assistant, 1 Media Assistant, and 4 Food Service staff.
Our numerous parent volunteers provide over 3,000 hours of various support throughout the school.
A look back
Pleasant Valley is the oldest school in the Centennial School District. The original wing of the current building was constructed in 1939. A one-room school preceded Pleasant Valley on the same site, known as the Sycamore School. It was built in 1897 by splitting boards and shingles out of cedar from surrounding land. The bronze bell came from an earlier school, established in 1893. Pleasant Valley’s site has grown from one acre at the turn of the century to 17.6 acres. The building has expanded through six additions. In the 1993 remodeling of the school’s office area, special effort was made to maintain the old fashion flavor emanating from the building’s rich-colored wood moldings and heavily lacquered floors. In 2006-07 we got new windows and a new roof to update our building and make it energy efficient.
A look at our students
We have a very rich, diverse population of students that we are very proud of in their academics and positive behaviors.
Our student demographics are:
48% males and 52% females
13% Hispanic/Latino; 17% Asian; 2% African American; 8% Multi-racial; Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander 1%; white 58%
Pleasant Valley is a school that is located in many jurisdictions. We are in Multnomah Co., Clackamas Co., City of Gresham, City of Portland and the City of Damascus. We have students in attendance from a rural setting to a suburban setting. This year we have around 415 students attending. We have reduced the number of classroom teachers from 22.5 about nine years ago to 15 this year. Our class sizes average 27 students per classroom which has increased from the low to the mid 20’s over the years.
We are lucky to have so much property around our school which is rich in the natural environment. We have 7 acres that has been reforested over the last 10 years. On our property we have a seasonal creek, a pond, a sewage waste plant, and lots of land beyond our playground and building site. The first year was spent working at removing invasive species of plant life such as blackberry plants and logging trees that are invasive also. Swales and rain gardens are around our grounds with more to be put in. There are some berry plants, fruit trees and some vegetables planted. We have Literacy Gardens and 3 B (birds, bees, butterfly attractant plants) Gardens at different locations on our grounds. Our 6th grade has a science class every day that integrates reading, writing and math into science. Mr. Scharfenberg, our very own science guy, has written grants to support this huge effort. We have Saturday work parties with parents, students, staff and community members participating.
We have a lot of work to do to meet the standards of the new Smarter Balanced Assessment. We perform similarly to comparison schools, but we fall below the State average of students meeting or exceeding this test. Teachers are working in Professional Learning Communities to determine the best instructional practices that impact student achievement. They use a variety of different assessment data to inform their instruction and meet the needs of all students. Students with disabilities will receive additional targeted supports in order to improve their achievement results.
A look at our parents
An active PTA brings the community together for special events that benefit the school and its students. Our PTA and parents meet every other month for an evening meeting on the second Monday beginning in September at 6:30. Pleasant Valley parents support our school by volunteering in the classroom, assisting the teacher by doing projects at home, helping with clerical tasks and organizing special events. Our PTA organizes our Back to School Picnic, Santa’s Breakfast and Carnival as well as other events throughout the year. Our PTA runs our fundraisers with the proceeds supporting many programs for our school.
All students have vocal music twice a week and PE twice each week. Band is offered to 6th graders after school at Centennial High School on a twice weekly basis. A media assistant meets with every classroom once a week in the library for book check out. Our counselor meets with every classroom once a week for Character Strength lessons. We have a 30 student Chess for Success Club that runs after school on Monday and Tuesday from October through March.
PV Wildside Project
The “Wildside”, as named by students, was begun in 2007. It involves restoring native areas and educating people about them. We have had three goals since the beginning: Improve soil and water quality, provide native plant and animal habitat, and encourage the public with education and enjoyment of the environment. Students and their families have planted over 4,000 trees, eliminated five acres of invasive blackberry, and continue to restore other areas around the school. All work integrates reading, writing, math, science, speaking and art!
We have a Facebook page here with news about upcoming events and news relating to the work on the Wildside.
*Application paperwork for free and reduced meals can be found in the main office.
All PV students have the option of riding the school bus because the neighborhood is rural and we have no sidewalks for walking safely.
A private day care provider offers after-school care in our building until 6 pm. For information, contact Champions at 503-803-0366.