The Early Link Podcast
About This Show
The Early Link Podcast, brought to you by Children's Institute based in Portland, Oregon, highlights national, regional, and local voices working in early childhood education and the nonprofit sector. Written, hosted, and produced by Rafael Otto.
Most Recent Episode
The Impact of Early Childhood Education with Don Grotting
Don Grotting is the superintendent of the Beaverton School District. For more than 20 years, he has led school districts in rural and urban communities across Oregon. Grotting has received several awards and accolades for his work and leadership, including 2014 Oregon Superintendent of the Year from the American Association of School Administrators. He also sits on numerous boards and advisory committees, including the Governor’s Council on Education and Oregon’s State Board of Education.
Grotting hails from the town of Coquille in southwestern Oregon where he a grew up in what he describes as extreme poverty. After three years in the military and more than a decade working in a sawmill in his hometown, Grotting enrolled in college in his mid-30s. Soon after, he took a job teaching elementary school in Powers, Oregon. Two years later he was invited to apply for the superintendent’s job for the small district. Since then, Grotting has served as superintendent in Nyssa and David Douglas school districts, experiences that have helped him focus on the needs of children before they enter the K-12 system.
Grotting was a key figure in the development of the Early Works initiative at Earl Boyles Elementary in Southeast Portland. Started in collaboration with Children’s Institute during Grotting’s first year as David Douglas School District superintendent in 2010, Early Works is a model for early learning and healthy development for children birth to five in an elementary school setting. At Earl Boyles, early learning programs, infant and toddler groups, parent engagement activities, and preschool support young children’s love of learning and prepares them for success when they enter kindergarten. After securing a voter-approved construction bond in 2012, Grotting prioritized construction of the Early Learning Wing and Neighborhood Center at Earl Boyles in 2014.
In this interview, Grotting reflects on his career, the importance of early learning, his goals for the Beaverton School District, and more.
Episodes of This Show
Nov 14, 2017