Sweet Home School District
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From the Superintendent

Dear Parents, Students, and Community,

I hope this message finds you and your family healthy and happy. I hope summer offered you a chance to play, recreate, and have family fun and adventures. I encourage all of you to keep playing and doing things that bring joy to your life. As one of our Founding Fathers, Ben Franklin, advises us, “We don’t stop playing because we grow old. We grow old because we stop playing.” So stay young—no matter your age!

It is my second year as your superintendent and I am so proud of the accomplishments of our school district last year. Together we:

  • Adopted a new science curriculum for our K-12 students

  • Switched to a Gmail-Google ready district for more efficient communications and learning apps

  • Dedicated more resources to Student Services to serve students with disabilities

  • Created Teacher Leadership Teams to work with the District to build instructional best practices for student learning

  • Instituted a student-athlete drug testing policy to help keep our students safe

  • Passed a $4 million bond and sought out and obtained $4 million in state matching funds to make our schools safer, address needed upgrades, and renovate the Jr High –Thank You Sweet Home!

  • Sought out and obtained over $6 million in seismic grants to upgrade and improve the safety of schools for students

  • Added 35 professional development weekly sessions so that we may refine our instruction for student learning

  • Added 23 more instructional days to the school year giving students more opportunity to develop skills, find purpose, and be inspired to achieve their potential in a 5-day week

  • Executed our first Job Fair for recruiting, hiring, and retaining great teachers

  • Increased salaries for nearly all employees

  • Added physical education teachers and classes to serve our K-6 students

  • Added 3 much needed elementary teachers to reduce class sizes

  • Applied for and acquired funds to build on to our Forestry, Careers, and Technical programs

  • Developed goals and action plans to encourage all kids to participate in sports; activities; clubs; and character, citizenship, and service activities

This list does not include all the incredibly inspiring events that happened every day in our schools last year. From the kindergartener learning to read their first sentence to high school students obtaining state championships in swimming and wrestling, every student in our Sweet Home schools has grown and achieved. In short, we did a lot of big things last year! We are a district and a community on the move. It is clear to me our governing school board, teachers, support staff, coaches, and community are completely invested in our communities’ children.

Looking ahead we have big things to accomplish this year and I am excited. In visiting with students this summer, every student I spoke to was excited for the new school year. The beginning of the new year is like the dawn of a new day. I have listened to student hopes, dreams, and the skills they wish to develop. This year holds infinite possibilities for all our students. And for the community of Sweet Home, a new school year brings us together with a common goal: helping children. They are our future. I am proud to live in a community that so strongly supports its kids and schools. We are Sweet Home strong and all part of a team. As a great coach once said, “The strength of the team is each individual member...the strength of each member is the team.”

Parents, before the start of the year please review your school’s bell schedule adjustments. We have a new 5-day week with 1-hour early release Wednesdays for staff professional development. We adjusted the start of the school day to 15 minutes later. Please check the quick facts in this publication as well as your school for specific start and stop times for your student.

Finally, I cannot express how much I adamantly believe in our schools and community. I vow we will relentlessly work together to be the best we can be, providing every student the opportunity to become thinking, thriving, productive citizens ready to contribute to the work force, our communities, our country, and ultimately prepared to chase the American Dream!

I have an open door policy. Please swing by to visit!

Go Sweet Home!


Superintendent Tom Yahraes