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Parents Pushing Portland Schools To Address HS Schedule Gaps, Staffing

Long-time supporters of the Portland Public Schools are pressing district leaders to address schedule and staffing problems in high schools.

Franklin High School

Franklin High School

Rob Manning/OPB

Portland school parents say the district’s block schedule deprives students of the equivalent of dozens of school days. They argue kids wind up wasting time during free periods or study halls.

Mike Rosen is a parent-leader at Cleveland High. He says parents who have for years raised money and campaigned for the district are the ones raising the scheduling issues.

Rosen said, “But we can’t tolerate any more the misuse, or the misappropriation, or ineffective appropriation of dollars in Portland Public Schools.”

The district says the schedule is an unfortunate byproduct of budget cuts and an arbitrator’s ruling related to teaching loads.

Officials say they’re now planning to assign 11 more teachers to high schools. But those teachers were already in reserve, and parents say they want board members to comb the budget for ways to further invest in high schools.