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Office of Student Services

About Us

The Office of Student Services supports all school districts, ESDs and early childhood special education programs by providing educational and technical assistance services.
The Office functions internally with several work centers, including: System Performance Review & Improvement, Regional Programs and Best Practices, Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education, Youth Corrections Education, LTCT/Hospital Education programs, School Health, and Safe & Drug Free Schools. ODE does fingerprint background checks for newly hired non-certified school district employees, charter schools, private schools and their contractors as authorized in ORS 326.603.  The Pupil Transportation Section provides leadership in coordinating activities related to the transportation of pupils.  Child Nutrition’s goal is to administer and provide leadership and assistance to sponsors of USDA food and nutrition programs to support the growth and development of Oregon's children so they will reach their highest potential for life-long learning, health and well-being.
Staff interacts across work center responsibilities and throughout the Department to pursue the mission and goals of the Department of Education as well as the performance goals of the Office.

Assistant Superintendent

Sarah Drinkwater, Assistant Superintendent, Ph.D., Oregon Department of Education
Sarah Drinkwater, Assistant Superintendent, Ph.D., Oregon Department of Education
Sarah Drinkwater, Ph.D., obtained her doctorate in special education, with an emphasis in early childhood, in 1988 from the University of Oregon. She worked as a Research Assistant Professor at the University of Washington in early childhood special education personnel preparation, and also taught at the University of Nevada, Reno, in the College of Education.
Her public education administrative career began in the Highline School District (WA) as a special education coordinator supporting programs preschool through secondary transition. She then moved to Federal Way Public Schools (WA) where she spent 8 years as a Coordinator and Director in Student Support Services.  She managed elementary and secondary special education programs, health services, Head Start and counselor services. As the Director of the department, she also supervised ELL and Gifted/Talented programs, as well as Title I services. She was the Executive Director of Student Services with the Peninsula School District (WA) for eleven years, overseeing all Title I/Special Education/School Nurses/Early Childhood/ELL/Safe and Drug Free Schools/Readiness to Learn programs.
She came to ODE in 2012 as a Director with Student Learning/Partnerships and assumed the position of Assistant Superintendent of Student Services in 2013.

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