Pratum School is one of the smallest schools in the Silver Falls School District with only 80 students, many of them siblings. During recess, you see seventh and eighth graders helping third graders on the basketball court and eight graders having snacks with fourth graders. It’s something you don’t see as often these days in modern schools.
“All of the teachers and staff members know each student really well,” said Special Education Assistant Susan McGuffin who was out on the play yard at recess. “We really understand and care about their academic and social needs so we can work together as a team to help them succeed.”
The students agreed that the small school setting works.
“Everybody knows everybody,” said fourth grader Hannah Sater.
During recess, Grace Haury, who is in the eighth grade spent some time with her younger sister Alexis and a few of her third grade friends.
“I like how we get individual attention,” said Haury.
Seventh grader Hunter Bell-Eddy, who was playing basketball with other students from all grade levels said he like being with all of the grade levels.
“We like hanging out with each other and engaging,” said Bell-Eddy.
In one Pratum School classroom, Lisa Freauff who teaches 3rd, 4th and 5th grade explained the benefits of having students in the same classroom for
three years in a row.
“I feel like I have the gift of time to give the students what they need,” said Freauff who described the tremendous change and growth that takes place during the three years in her classroom at Pratum School.
Teacher Dawn Roth has worked at Pratum School for 10 years and she agreed that working with students over an extended period is a gift.
“I really love that I have my kids for three years in row because I know their needs and strengths,” said Roth. “I get to know them as people not just students and that’s pretty special.”