For several decades now, public education has gone from mostly state-funded to increasing intervention by way of funding from the United States federal government. The No Child Left Behind Act implemented annual testing requirements across states that showed a disparity between the educational achievements of students from different ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds.

More recently, the federal administration has expanded school choice to include not only public schools but charter schools, private and parochial schools, vouchers, and education savings accounts. According to U.S. News and World Report, the state of Oregon ranks 22nd when looking at factors such as health care, economy, infrastructure, opportunity, and schooling. Take a look at some of the things you should know about Oregon’s school system.

Fast Facts

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The Oregon Department of Education (ODE) oversees the schooling of more than 560,000 students in the state’s public K-12 system. The state of Oregon has over 1,200 public K-12 schools that are divvied up into 197 school districts and 19 education service districts. Public charter schools have become a popular school setting, with over 100 such schools available.

When it comes to Oregon charter schools, the Oregon Charter Academy prioritizes teaching students the modern-day skills of communication, collaboration, creativity, and critical thinking necessary to participate in ever-changing economies. The tuition-free, online charter school serves grades K-12 using cutting-edge technology tools and pedagogical practices to ensure students’ future success. Every applicant who is accepted to the virtual charter school receives a Chromebook to complete schoolwork and assignments and can participate in elective courses of their choosing.

Common Core State Standards

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Oregon’s school system follows the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for English language arts and mathematics. These state standards ensure that all students will achieve a level of literacy and mathematics necessary for college or career by the end of high school. The CCSS is designed to meet the expectation of college and career success and is built on the strengths and examples set by both existing state content standards and top-performing countries.

Standards are created to encourage excellence. Simlarly, OSHA’s mission is to ensure that all workers receive proper training when it comes to construction safety and health. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) certification course provides education about the reduction, avoidance, recognition, and prevention of workplace hazards. Pennco Tech is one of the only trade schools named an official OSHA certification program testing site. Both the OSHA 10-hour and 30-hour certification courses are taught by a certified OSHA trainer in both an on-site and online learning environment. Students who earn a certificate of completion will be armed with the skills needed to work in the electrical, plumbing, or construction industry.

Changes to the learning environment due to COVID-19

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COVID-19 has forced national education systems to adopt new learning environments and change the way schools operate. The state board of education has laid out a blueprint that individual school districts can use as a guide to implement independent education plans that prioritize the safety of students and teachers. Schools can choose to teach on-site, via online learning, or through a combination of the two.

Trying to find a balance between home life and work tasks is a challenge for new remote workers. Working full time while being surrounded by family members can easily sidetrack your routine and inhibit your workday. Days 3 offers some beneficial tips on how to improve productivity when you work from home. Now that you spend a lot of time at home, it’s essential to improve your home’s air quality and ventilation, as your indoor air quality can actually help increase productivity.

Whether you have a dedicated home office or the living room or kitchen table double as your work desk, it’s a good idea to have a dedicated workspace that’s free of distractions. If conference calls are part of your daily schedule, invest in a quality pair of headphones that will drown out background noise so you can focus. Keep your dedicated workspace clean by keeping it clutter-free. Make it a point to put things away at the end of the day, and give your workspace a deep clean every Monday morning so you can start your workday fresh.

Students need a strong educational background to prepare them to become successful members of their communities and both local and global economies. By showcasing your ability to set space aside for your workday, you’ll be showing the kids around you how to be more productive. This is a great way to set a great example and get more done at the same time.