Communities, Front Page, Oakridge/Westfir

Oakridge School District to get digital electronic reader board like those at Pleasant Hill and Lowell

oakridge school district,new digital reader board
A tale of three school districts: From left, elevated community reader boards at Pleasant Hill, Lowell and Oakridge. Next summer, Oakridge will upgrade to a sign like its neighbors have. Doug Bates/The Herald

By DOUG BATES/Editor/The Herald — Oakridge-Westfir residents who are weary of being urged to BE THE LIGHT as they pass the school grounds may be happy to learn that Oakridge is going to get a modern digital reader board like those you see when you drive through Pleasant Hill or Lowell.

stonework reader board,oakridge school district,communication problem
Oakridge schools’ broken-down electronic reader board is to be redone with a wooden inlay placed where the digital readout used to be. It will be engraved with “Oakridge School District.” Doug Bates/The Herald

Oakridge School Supt. Reta Doland said this week the “specific sign and design on it is to be determined,” but the work will begin late this spring or early this summer. It will be similar to those in the neighboring Highway 58 school districts of Pleasant Hill and Lowell, which have used such electronic signs for a number of years to help keep their communities informed about upcoming events and to honor student achievement.

“We are beginning work on the design and plan at this time,” Doland told The Herald. The budget for the project “is in the $50,000 range,” she said, and the funds will come from the bond issue passed by district voters three years ago.

Doland said the new digital reader board will replace the vintage 1940s-style letterboard in the corner of the baseball field at First Street and Crest Drive. That sign, which remains blank on its west side, still says “BE THE LIGHT” on its east side — a 2020 graduation slogan that has been there, minus some letters blown away by the wind, for nearly a year.

The school district has a small, non-elevated electronic reader board built into a stonework structure near the tennis courts at this intersection, but the sign has been inoperable for months. Doland said plans call for replacing the structure’s electronics with a wooden inlay engraved with “Oakridge School District.”

Herald Editor Doug Bates is a retired newspaper journalist who lives in Oakridge.




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