The La Grande School District will receive $303,000 in Measure 98 funding in 2017-18 from the state, money it will be using in a variety of ways to reach out to students.

La Grande School District Superintendent George Mendoza is optimistic about the possibilities.

“(The extra funds) will let us do a lot of great things,” Mendoza said.

Measure 98 was passed by Oregon voters in 2016 and requires the state to provide additional money to school districts for dropout prevention, career technical education and college readiness programs.

A significant portion of the money will go toward dropout prevention efforts, Mendoza said. Many of the services meant to help students stay in school are offered via the school district’s new La Grande Learning Academy based at Willow School.

The La Grande Learning Academy will provide an expanded number of online classes for credit recovery as part of this effort. The online classes allow LHS students to retake courses they had not passed earlier.

The school district is also using the funding to increase the number of online classes available to students. The classes are being offered through a new online program the La Grande School District is operating this year with the help of the InterMountain Education Service District.

The La Grande School District presently has 10 students who are taking classes online. Seven are high school students, two are grade school students and one is a middle school student. Three of the students are taking a mix of in-school and online classes, Mendoza said.

See complete story in Friday's Observer