Dr. Paul Hillyer, Superintendent (email)
1336 Avalon Street • Klamath Falls, OR 97603 • (541) 883-4700
Information from the Superintendent!
The new district vision statement is, “Dedicated to helping all students do their best work and become their best selves.” Our first two district aims relate to helping us make this vision a reality. You can play an active part in this work.
Our first AIM is “All Students Do Their Best Work.” One way to help make this happen is through students, parents and community members providing leadership in our schools and giving ideas and input into our practices. We hope you take advantage of opportunities to take on leadership roles in our schools and to share your perspective with us throughout the year. Your ideas are important and valuable.
Parents are also critical in helping students do their best work by checking in daily with the work they are doing in school to make sure it is the best they can do. When reviewing the students’ school work a simple question could help set the stage: “Is this your best work?” If the answer is “no”, then it should be improved. Requiring their best work around the home also reinforces this important message. Having high expectations for students taking pride in themselves and in their work is critical to students’ fully realizing their potential.
Under the second AIM, “All Students Become Their Best Selves,” parents and community members can help students by expecting them to be respectful and kind to others. Also important under this AIM is having students experience serving others inside and outside of the home. Helping students realize that true happiness comes not from a self-centered focus but rather from a service-centered focus is a big part of their growth in this area.
Parents can also support this AIM by helping their children understand the importance of faithful school attendance. This will allow them to develop crucial character traits such as work ethic and commitment to learning. Good school attendance is also a crucial building block to being a good employee as an adult. Those who do not faithfully attend their work do not keep their jobs. The habit of showing-up starts in school.
Helping students do their best work and become their best selves is the daily priority of our schools. This focus helps us partner with the home and the community to bring about maximum growth and success in our students.
About a month into the 2018-2019 academic school year, students are still getting used to being in the new building. After three years of anticipation to see their restored high school, Klamath Union students finally have a welcoming and warm learning environment.
Students were eager to see what the new building would look like after the summer. Senior Jordan Rejon mentioned, "I was actually pretty impressed. I really like the wood staircase and the open space.” “At first I was really confused on where everything was, but now I’ve gotten used to it” said sophomore student Daniel Thornton.
Having put the days of using trailers for classrooms behind them, students are now delighted they no longer have to go outside to travel from one class to another. “I am just so happy that we don’t have to go outside anymore, I would always get so cold in the winter,” says sophomore Saira Blevins.
Surprisingly, some of the students also mentioned how much they liked the color palettes that were used for the new building, stating that the red and cream color added more brightness to the walls.
"It's more of a college environment than the old KU," said junior Jezzebelle Rowley. "The building really fits and promotes the college classes that are available here at KU."
The new academic building is more suited for the many career pathways now offered at Klamath Union. KU now offers nine pathways in Computer Science, Reach to Teach (teacher pathway), Media Design, Science and Math Academy, Culinary Arts, Emergency Services, Liberal Arts Academy, Industrial Arts, and Certified Nursing Assistant certifications. With a new bright and welcoming facility, students and staff alike will be sure to start creating fond memories in this new academic environment.
Thank you to Karla Andrade for this update.
Dr. Hillyer has been an educator for more than thirty years. During that time he has been an elementary and middle school teacher. He has also served as building principal at the elementary and middle level for thirteen years. For twelve years he worked in the Owatonna, Minnesota, public schools. Ten of those years were as their Director of Instructional Services. From the 2005-2006 school year through 2009-2010 he served as Superintendent of the Columbus, Nebraska, Public School District.
In 1998 Dr. Hillyer was awarded a Ph.D. in Educational Administration from Iowa State University. It was at ISU that he also received his superintendent training. Other degrees earned by Dr. Hillyer include a Master of Science degree from Northern State College in Aberdeen, South Dakota and a Bachelor of Arts degree at St. John's University in Collegeville, Minnesota.
Dr. Hillyer also received his elementary teaching certificate through his home town of Bismarck, ND, at the University of Mary. He graduated from St. Mary's Central high school in Bismarck.
His wife, Janie, and he have been married for 31 years. They have five boys. His interests include hiking, boating, biking, and church activities.