Grandparents &

Special Friends at the



of Portland

Welcome!  All of us at the International School of Portland value the importance of the rich and diverse relationships that our students have with their grandparents and special friends and we are excited to have you as a member of our school community.  You play a vital role in our community as loving supporters of our students and their education and we are honored to have the privilege of paving the way for your grandchild or special friend at ISP to become global citizen.

There are many ways for grandparents and special friends to be engaged in their  students’ education here at the International School of Portland! Click on the buttons below to learn more about our events, volunteer opportunities, strengthening our programs through philanthropic contributions, and more.

Grandparents & Special Friends Afternoon Tea

Saturday, May 6, 2023

Grandparents or special friends and their ISP student(s) are invited to join us for an afternoon tea, treats, library activities and stories. 

Our event will follow an open house format.  When making your reservation, please let us know what time you will be arriving (entry times will be set in one-hour increments).   In order to maintain a safe event experience for all guests, please adhere to your arrival window reservation time.  You are welcome to stay and enjoy the event activities as long as you’d like!

You can help our multi-lingual library grow!  Sponsor a book (or books!) in honor of your ISP grandchild or special friend.   A bookplate with your dedication of choice will be placed in a new book selected by our librarians.

$25 sponsors 1 book / $100 sponsors 4 books / $500 sponsors 20 books!

Use the button below to make your reservation and support the ISP library.  Reservations must be received no later than April 28, 2023.  Contact Alumni and Community Relations Manager, Rebecca Roberts, at or 503-226-2496 ext. 125 with questions about this event.

Grandparent Highlight

Mary Bakken

Prior to the onset of the pandemic in early 2020, ISP Grandparent Mary Bakken spent every weekday morning on campus serving as a volunteer in her grandson’s English Class. As a retired Kindergarten Teacher and Reading Specialist, Mary’s assistance in the English Class was a perfect fit. “I love being a part of my grandsons’ lives and education,” shared Mary.  Her grandsons are enrolled in our Spanish Track, a language Mary doesn’t speak, so this felt like a great way for her to get involved. “Even in small classes, teaching writing can be hard. I’m happy to be able to help out.”

When asked about her experience so far, Mary explained, “It’s awesome! I’m active in education again, and I get to see the different stages of the kids’ English writing development. And, it’s incredible to think these kids are learning first in another language!” Mary spent most of her career in a low-income district in the Minnesota Public School system. Many of her students were learning English as their second-language. “It’s interesting to now be assisting in a language immersion program of a different sort – I’m kind-of flipping the script!”

Mary has some advice for other grandparents looking to get involved: “Just don’t be afraid to dive in! We’re all life-long learners, and it really takes a whole support staff to help everyone reach their potential. When families get involved, it makes everyone better.”

We couldn’t agree more! Thank you, Mary, for helping our students thrive!

Interested in volunteering at ISP? Additional information on how you can participate as a ISP volunteer will be available soon by clicking the orange  Volunteer at ISP button above.   Please note that we are looking forward to welcoming guests back to campus to help in our library, garden, in classrooms and at school events once Covid safety protocols allow.  

Do you have questions?  We’re here to help you!

Beth Katona

Development Director

503-226-2496 ext. 117

Rebecca Roberts

Alumni & Community Relations

503-246-2496 ext. 125

Allegra Lopez

Events & Development Asst.

503-246-2496 ext. 116