▶️ Redmond SD commits to inclusivity through new task force


The Redmond School District is working to provide a more inclusive environment for students.

On Tuesday the district announced they are creating a District Equity Task Force to address systematic barriers students may face.

The group’s work will focus on

– Adopting an Equity Lens for the Redmond School District;
– Identifying policies and practices that contribute both to the achievement gap between students who endure inequities and the rest of the student population and to the achievement of those students;
– Recommending district wide training of Redmond school district personnel to combat issues of explicit and implicit racism, as well as recommending practices to diversify the school district workforce and monitoring the implementation of those practices;
– Creating or recommending projects and activities that build collective community among the diverse members of the community of Redmond.

The task force will consist of about 16 people.

Including Redmond School District administrators, licensed staff, classified staff, students, parents/guardians, Redmond community members, and a member of the Redmond School District Board.

Members will serve a one-year term for the duration of the school year, with their first meeting planned for late September.

The deadline to apply for a spot on the Task Force is September 14.


▶️ BLP superintendent addresses local parents’ childcare concerns


On Wednesday Bend Parks and Recreation announced an all-day childcare program for the that will take place inside of 14 Bend elementary schools this fall.

Parents are now questioning why the program can take place inside of the schools, but classes cannot.

“If we closed our school to that opportunity and they had to look elsewhere,” Lora Nordquist, Bend-La Pine Schools superintendent explained. “They would not be able to find many sites that they would be able to locate at.”

Nordquist says childcare can be held inside schools, but student instruction cannot because of metrics.

The district does not currently meet state metrics to return to in-person instruction, but those same guidelines don’t apply to Bend Parks and Rec.

“It does feel a little contradictory,” Nordquist said. “On the other hand, I’m completely sympathetic with families and their need for childcare for children in grades kindergarten through five.”

The program will be limited to forty students per school, each split into two cohorts.

Nordquist says that is a significantly lower number of kids in one place than if all grades came back to school.

“500 spots might be a drop in the bucket, but it is a way that we can help address some of that need in our community.”

Norquist hopes kids will be back for in-person learning

sooner than later, and childcare won’t be as much of an issue.

The last day to apply for Bend Parks and Rec’s fall program is August 31st.

▶️ BPRD announces all-day childcare program to support working families


A limited space all-day childcare program will be offered by Bend Parks and Recreation starting this fall.

In partnership with Bend-La Pine Schools, the program will be held at 14 elementary schools throughout the district to support working families.

“We just felt like it was important to step up now and help provide that alternative childcare for working parents,” Sue Boettner, recreation services manager, said. “So that they can make sure their kids are safe, that they’re getting the education that they need, and then that they’re safe and in an enriching environment.”

They call it Operation Recreation “Team Up.”

The alternative arrangement for first-to-fifth-grade children is a continuation of what BPRD’s summer programs look like.

The only difference is time set aside for distance learning.

“It’s not intended to replace school or education,” Boettner said. “We will have some education assistants guiding children through that part of the morning time.”

All-day program details:
Grades 1-5 (Kindergarten not eligible)
Dates: September 16 – October 23 (additional sessions will be added if distance learning is extended by Bend-La Pine Schools)
Schedule: Monday-Friday: 7:45am-4:30pm
Location: All Bend elementary schools except for Amity and Westside Village. Children will be assigned to their home school whenever possible.
Fee: $200 per week (due bi-weekly)
Financial assistance available for qualifying families

Boettner says she expects between 275 and 500 children in the program, and hopes to keep each at their home school.

BPRD will also follow all Oregon Health Authority guidelines, including social distancing and wearing masks.

Applying does not guarantee a place in the program.

However, if there are more applications than available spots, BPRD will be conduct a lottery to select participants and a designated number of spaces will be reserved for lower income families in need of financial assistance.

Applications are open Aug. 26 through Aug. 31.

Applicants will be notified on Sept. 2 if they have secured a spot or are placed on the waitlist. Applicants will also be notified about financial assistance awarded at this time.

For more information, visit https://www.bendparksandrec.org/activities/childcare/

▶️ Santa touches down in Bend’s Old Mill

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…and who better to bring that holiday cheer than Santa himself.

Every Black Friday Santa trades in his sleigh for a helicopter ride to Les Schwab Amphitheater.

Despite the busy season, Santa isn’t going back to the North Pole just yet. Until December 23rd he’ll at Santa Land in the Old Mill, waiting to snap a photo and grant your Christmas wishes.

Santa’s schedule is expected to fill up quickly, so arrive early, and don’t forget to bring that nice list smile.

If you’re trying to catch Santa this weekend, he’ll be at Santa Land from 11AM-5PM in the Old Mill.

▶️ Holiday shopping in full swing in Central Oregon

Holiday shopping was in full swing today for Black Friday.

In Bend’s Cascade Village Shopping Center parking lots were jam-packed and traffic was slowed to a crawl. However, Black Friday at big box stores still faces stiff competition from online retailers.

“I do most of it online. Like, I look at the stuff here and then look it up online, in the store. Most of the time it’s cheaper on line,” said Quenntin Jameson, a shopper visiting from Tacoma, Washington.  “Compared to Washington, it’s pretty chill and relaxed. Nobody’s getting trampled to death”

Over in Redmond it was a different story with shoppers casually strolling through the Holiday Village Market in Centennial Park.

“Even with the cold temperatures we do see a lot of people who are trying to shop local,” said Jenna Fox, a member of the Redmond Chamber of Commerce. “You know it’s easy to get online and shop Amazon but there’s that one-on-one connection with people that a lot of people value and you get to keep shopping from those businesses each year.”

Sandwiched between Black Friday and Cyber Monday is Small Business Saturday, a national movement to keep that holiday spending close to home.

“Shopping local, for every dollar you spend  about 67-cents stays in town and then gets spread around again so there’s a multiplier effect,” said Eric Sande, the Executive Director of the Redmond Chamber of Commerce. “So shopping local keeps money here, it keeps people in business. They are our family and friends. We want to support everybody and make sure this is a good season for everybody.” 

The National Retail Federation, the nation’s largest trade group, predicts holiday sales will rise between 3.8% and 4.2% this year compared to last, driven by a strong job market.

Two Bend-La Pine students ace the ACT

Less than 1 percent of all students who take the ACT come away with a perfect score of 36.

This year, two students from Bend-La Pine Schools’ earned that distinction – Summit High School senior Savannah Kane and Mountain View High School senior Jared Charney Cohen.

“We are excited to celebrate our students’ successes and their dedication to academics,” said Superintendent Shay Mikalson.

Jared Charney Cohen — Mountain View

Jared loves to perform – including singing, dancing and acting. He has performed in local and regional theater productions. Jared also loves learning and diving into new subjects. His goal is to attend a college with a strong performing arts program that supports interdisciplinary studies, ideally in southern California. Jared says he feels lucky to have been able to take advantage of so many opportunities presented to him throughout his time in school – on stage and off.

Savannah Kane – Summit

Savannah enjoys volunteering and has spent time at Healing Reins, the local emergency room and the Humane Society. She plans to pursue a career in the medical field and would like to become a cardiothoracic surgeon. Eventually, she would also like to work as a doctor in a developing country. Savannah says she has a tremendous support system with her friends and feels like her teachers helped support her academically and personally.

The ACT contains four multiple-choice tests—English, mathematics, reading, and science—and an optional writing test. These tests are designed to measure skills that are most important for success in postsecondary education and that are acquired in secondary education. The score range for each of the four multiple-choice tests is 1–36. The Composite score is the average of the four test scores rounded to the nearest whole number.

IS THIS YOUR GOAT? Stuck Goat Rescued in Crooked River Ranch

Authorities are searching for the owner of a goat that was rescued from Crooked River Canyon Tuesday night.

Citizens called Jefferson County Sheriff’s deputies after multiple people tried to rescue the goat that was stuck on a rock ledge near Horny Hallow Trail.

One man made made it down to the ledge and was sitting with the goat while the Crooked River Ranch rope team successfully rescued the animal.

The man was able to climb down on his own.

The male Nubian goat was turned over to the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office.

If you’re missing a goat, contact Deputy Keever at 541-475-2201


Deschutes County to Give Voters a Say on Pot Businesses

After years of discussion regarding marijuana regulations in Deschutes County, commissioners have decided to opt out of allowing future recreational marijuana businesses after this month.

Voters next November will be the ones to decide whether future businesses are allowed to sprout.

Central Oregon Daily’s Anyssa Bohanon was the the meeting today and has the story.



Redmond Hotel Upgrades Anchor Downtown Revitalization Efforts

The Historic Redmond Hotel is coming back to life.

A new rooftop bar, lounge and other renovations are all part of the project – and part of a bigger plan to revitalize downtown Redmond’s economy.

Central Oregon Daily’s Dalton Roth has the view from the top.

Photo by Timothy Park courtesy of the City of Redmond


Body Found in Sunriver Identified as Adult White Male

Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office detectives suspect foul play is involved after finding human remains Sunday about six miles west of Sunriver.

An autopsy performed Tuesday morning identified the body as that of a white man between the ages of 18 and 40.

According to Sgt. William Bailey, deputies were dispatched to Deschutes National Forest land just before noon Sunday after a camper reported finding a possible decomposed body alongside a forest service road near Wake Butte.

Upon arrival, deputies confirmed it was human remains. Bailey told Central Oregon Daily the body was badly decomposed and had been there for “months.”

The Oregon State Police crime lab was called to the scene to help with the investigation and an autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday, Bailey said.

Sheriff’s detectives are working with the state Medical Examiner’s Office to determine the identity and cause of death. No further information was provided by the sheriff’s office.