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Superintendents Spotlight Promises Kept
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OJUSD Superintendent

In the past few years I have been very disappointed with not all, but many of our elected officials as they seem to be unable to work together to resolve the serious issues facing our local areas, state and nation. This lack of leadership by many of our elected officials has continued even after they have campaigned and promised to work together to fix the conundrum. I am frequently reminded of Julie Andrews in “Mary Poppins” when she calls these types of commitments “Pie-Crust Promises” – easily made, easily broken.

The actions of the members of the Oakdale Joint Unified School District Board of Trustees have been in sharp contrast to the typical “promise anything and deliver little” philosophy. I have been pleased and uplifted by the decisions made by and the actions taken by the OJUSD Board. This body has worked consistently to follow the community developed strategic plan and to keep their commitments. I was able to observe first hand at the Oakdale High School Aquatic Center groundbreaking ceremony the completion of a long-standing promise. The OJUSD board of trustees made a promise to the community of Oakdale in 2002 to use the Oakdale area’s taxpayers’ bond money wisely and to deliver to the community a number of new projects as well as make improvements to our existing facilities. The final piece of the puzzle was added with the awarding of the bid to complete the Oakdale High Aquatic Center.

Assistant Superintendent Barbara Shook gave an outstanding report of the academic achievements of the students attending Oakdale’s schools at the last board meeting. She was able to point out that all four of our elementary schools scored well above the 800 point level on the performance index and both our comprehensive Oakdale Junior High and Oakdale High School made excellent growth on performance index. She demonstrated with test data and pointed out with graphs, charts and statistics that Oakdale is the top performing unified school district in Stanislaus County. The administrators, parents, teachers, classified employees and students all worked hard to achieve this goal. It is great to be able to correctly say to our family and friends that “Oakdale has great schools.”

The H1N1 flu (aka Swine flu) has arrived and we are noticing that students are generally not having as severe of reaction as was originally expected. As recommended by both state and federal health officials we are treating H1N1 as any other regional influenza outbreak. It is strongly recommended that parents follow the following suggestions:

1. We encourage parents to take children to the doctor at the early stages of flu-like symptoms.

2. Wash your hands with sanitizing soap frequently.

3. Cover your coughs.

4. Keep your child home if they have flu-like symptoms.

5. Keep students home for at least twenty-four hours after the flu symptoms stop.

6. Get school-aged children vaccinated as soon as the vaccine is available.

We are hopeful that we will get through this cold and flu season with all of our students recovering fully if they become ill.

If you get the opportunity please get out and watch an Oakdale school sports competition, see a play, listen to a concert, and join the fun! Our students are very competitive in all sports and have exceptional talent. If you live in the Oakdale area you have the chance to see some great local young people compete and perform, so take advantage of this golden opportunity.


Superintendent’s Spotlight is a monthly column provided by Oakdale Joint Unified School District Superintendent Fred Rich, updating the community with information about school district activities.