Greater Albany Public Schools is receiving a three-year, $1.1 million School Improvement Grant from the Oregon Department of Education, which it will use to fund the alternative Albany Options School.

The plan is to use the money to improve AOS graduation rates. The four-year “cohort group” rate, which measures the number of incoming freshmen who graduate four years later, has been about 11 percent for the past two years.

Assistant Superintendent Steve Kunke said the grant will cover, among other things, additional staff training, a full-time counselor and a student advocate.

AOS also stands to receive a new, full-time principal. Superintendent Maria Delapoer said she plans to seek approval from the Albany School Board on Monday to hire the acting principal, Mike Ingram. Principal Candy Baker has been on leave and is slated to be transferred to another position, Delapoer said.

AOS had been among possible reductions for the 2012-13 school year. Taking AOS off the cut list depends partly on whether teachers and staff agree to additional wage concessions, Delapoer said. So does maintaining the 2011-12 budget as proposed.

If they don’t, she said, the plan is to continue with the reductions as presented until further budget needs must be addressed. At that point, the board would have to decide whether to use more reserves or form a new plan.

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