September 25, 2020

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Columbia River High School

800 NW 99th ST.

Vancouver WA 98665


Principal - Alex Otoupal

Associate Principal/Curriculum - Rob Duncan

Associate Principal/Activities - Ken Roberts

Associate Principal/Athletic Director - Nick Davies


September 25, 2020

Greetings River Community,

Week Four of River Remote 2.0 is now complete!

We are excited to present to you our first (and hopefully last) virtual “Back to School” Night on Wednesday, September 30. This event is our traditional Curriculum Night and this year you are able to meet each member of our instructional faculty and support team asynchronously.

As you can see below, we have a busy week ahead. Additionally, check out the new doors going in our front entrance. If you have any questions or concerns please contact us.

Have a great weekend.


Alex Otoupal

Head of School

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Textbook and Materials Distribution

We will be collecting materials from last year and distributing materials you need for this year. A parent, guardian or sibling can pick up the books for River students. Not all students will need to pick up materials.

Pick-up for all remaining students will be on Wednesday, September 30, from 3-6 pm at the outside entrance to Hoover Gym. We will send notifications to specific students who should come to the pick-up.

As always, wear a mask and observe social distancing while you are on campus.

Activities and Athletics Fair

Columbia River High School's Activities and Athletics Fair continues next week. The Fair can be accessed through CANVAS using the this link:

There is a video introduction and then students are free to move through the Module at their leisure. Students can show interest in a sport or club by filling out the "Club and Sports Sign-Up Form 2020-2021"; and, they will be able to fill out the "Club Application" for a club in which they are interested in starting. All club applications are due on October 9, 2020.

We would like to thank you for your participation and connecting with the school.


The east parking lot will reopen on September 30! River Staffulty will be parking in the numbered spaces. If you are parking on campus: park in the visitor spaces closest to the school or the bus lot. The west parking lot, including the southwest spaces leading up to the light, will continue to be closed due to the construction.

Newly Added College, Trades, and Military Virtual Visits!

We're excited to announce several college, trades, and military visits coming to you virtually!

Click the links below to pre-register for virtual college visits that sound interesting to you. You must pre-register to attend!

We have listed all October visits below. If you would like to check out visits scheduled for November/December, see our blog post with the most up-to-date scheduled visits. If you don't see a college or trade on the list that you'd like to hear from, reach out and let us know! We will get it scheduled for you.

Wednesday, 9/30

Washington State University Pullman, 8:30 AM

Wednesday, 10/7

Military Branches, 8:00 AM

Pacific University Oregon, 10:30 AM

Portland Community College, 11:30 AM

Oregon State University, 1:30 PM

Thursday, 10/8

Clark College, 12:10 PM

Tuesday, 10/13

Trade Tuesday: Electrical Apprenticeships, 12:10 PM

Wednesday, 10/14

Gonzaga University, 8:00 AM

Whitworth University, 10:30 AM

University of Portland, 11:15 AM

Western Oregon University, 1:30 PM

Tuesday, 10/20

Washington State University Vancouver, 12:10 PM

Wednesday, 10/21

Seattle University, 8:30 AM

California Lutheran University, 10:30 AM

Southern Oregon University, 11:15 AM

Azusa Pacific University, 11:30 AM

Central Washington University, 1:30 PM

Tuesday, 10/27

Trade Tuesday: Cement Masons, 12:10 PM

Wednesday, 10/28

University of Oregon, 8:30 AM

Grand Canyon University, 10:30 AM

Western Washington University, 11:30 AM

Eastern Oregon University, 1:30 PM

Office Hours for Seniors

Are you a senior needing support in completing a college application, applying for a scholarship, figuring out what apprenticeship might be right for you, or are just confused all together about what happens after high school? Visit us during our office hours on Wednesday from 9:30-10:30. Click this link to register and receive the Zoom link to attend.

Financial Aid Opens October 1st!

Did you know that on October 1st the FAFSA and WASFA open up for application? The FAFSA/WASFA are financial aid applications that can help you pay for university, community college, trade or technical school. These applications are completely free to fill out and could result in you getting money to cover the cost of college!

These applications might get you:

  • Grants -- free money towards school that you don't have to pay back!
  • Work Study -- an opportunity for a job on campus that works with your school schedule
  • Scholarships -- the school you are attending may require that you complete the FAFSA or WASFA application to consider you for scholarships
  • Subsidized loans -- loans you can take out that do not collect interest while you are attending college (in other words, you don't have to pay on them until you graduate)
  • Unsubsidized loans - a last resort, but a loan that does collect interest throughout your time in college

You can't complete the FAFSA application until October 1st, but you can get yourself ready by doing these 2 things:

  1. Create an FSA ID -- you AND your parent will both need an ID
  2. Have your parents' 2019 taxes and w2s (if you worked in 2019, you need your taxes too!)

Should I complete the FAFSA or the WASFA?

  • If you are a US citizen and have a social security number, you should complete the FAFSA
  • If you are not a US citizen, you complete the WASFA
  • If your parents are not US citizens, but you are a US citizen, you complete the FAFSA
  • Still unsure which application you should complete? Use this quick questionnaire to help you decide.

SENIORS: Join us for Financial Aid Fridays!

Join us each Friday in October for different support completing your financial aid application (FAFSA or WASFA)! Overviews of each of the events are below; check our newsletter next week for links to register and more details about time and accessing events.

October 2nd, Financial Aid Friday Drive-Thru Edition: Join us for a drive-thru at CR to pick up packets that will support you in taking your next step after high school! Packets will include tips and info on completing the FAFSA/WASFA, the college application process, apprenticeship/trade options, military information, and other great tools you can use in your planning! More details to come... check your emails on Tuesday next week for timing and procedure!

October 9th, Financial Aid Friday with CollegeBound Expert, Kurt Reeser: Join us virtually for a presentation from Kurt Reeser about the FAFSA/WAFSA, paying for college, and how to access CollegeBound grants.

October 16th, Fill it Out Friday! Join us on a virtual Zoom session for any questions you have run into while trying to complete your FAFSA/WASFA.

October 23rd, Financial Aid Friday with WSUV's Kim McDougall: You don't have to be planning to attend WSUV to get a lot out of this presentation! Kim McDougall is an expert in all things financial aid and will talk with you about what comes next after completing the FAFSA/WASFA.

October 30th, Fill it Out Friday! Join us on a virtual Zoom session for any questions you have run into while trying to complete your FAFSA/WASFA.

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Did you know that there are many local scholarships that go unawarded each year because no one applies!? Just by completing a scholarship application, you have great chances of receiving that money! Check out our website for the most up-to-date local scholarships! We update this list regularly. If you need help completing an application, or need someone to proofread your essays, reach out! We're here to help!


Did you know that each year you have required lessons to complete for your High School and Beyond Plan? Did you know that the High School and Beyond Plan is a requirement to graduate? These lessons should help you start to think about what you want to do after high school!

To complete these lessons, you should log into ClassLink and find the Xello app. Click on that and complete the lessons that correspond to your grade level:

9th Grade:

  • Getting Experience

10th Grade:

  • Workplace Skills and Attitudes
  • Program Prospects

11th Grade:

  • Goals & Plans
  • Choosing a College or University
  • Job Interviews
  • Resume

12th Grade:

  • Goals & Plans
  • Financial Aid
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Resume
  • Job Interviews (if not completed in junior year)

Transcripts and Letters of Recommendation

Remember that if you are requesting a transcript to be sent to a college, you should request that transcript through Xello. Transcript requests will be filled every Monday.

If you are using Common App for your college application, you should also request letters of recommendation through Xello.

If you need directions on how to do any of these things, check out these videos:

Instructions on how to request a transcript through Xello

Video on how students integrate common app with Xello

Video on how students request documents for Common App

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Schedule Appointment with the Student Pathways Center

If you want to talk individually about your plans for after high school or need support with any planning, please schedule an appointment! We're here to help.


Our Child Nutrition Program will return to charging for daily meals using student PINs (issued at registration) once the Fall 2020-2021 school year begins on September 1, 2020. Students can receive free or reduced price meals by applying and qualifying for the National School Lunch Program (see below). Any enrolled student can also purchase a meal using their student meal account.

During Distance Learning, grab-and-go meals will be available for pick-up, Monday-Friday from 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. at the following locations:

Serving sites for the Vancouver School District, beginning September 1, 2020:

· Anderson Elementary, 2215 NE 104th St.

· Fruit Valley Elementary, 3410 NW Fruit Valley Rd.

· Ogden Elementary, 3200 NE 86th Ave.

· Roosevelt Elementary, 2921 Falk Rd.

· Washington Elementary, 2908 S. St.

· Discovery Middle School, 800 E. 40th St.

· Jason Lee Middle School, 8500 NW 9th Ave.

· McLoughlin Middle School, 5802 MacArthur Blvd.

Whether you are renewing an application or applying for the first time, we encourage you to fill out a Free & Reduced Meal Application:

· English

· Spanish

· Russian

A new application must be completed each school year.

Find additional Child Nutrition information on our website at

Free Reading Resources

How to access free reading resources, including Overdrive/SORA for either ipads or chromebooks:

Info on how to set up Sora on a chromebook and link it to FVRL:

Info on free rec reading resources:


Vancouver Public Schools is an equal opportunity district in education programs, activities, services, and employment. The district does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, sex, national origin, marital status, sexual orientation, including gender expression or identity, age, families with children, honorably discharged veteran or military status, the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability, or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal. The district provides equal access to the Boy Scouts of America and other designated youth groups. The district complies with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 402 of the Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Act of 1974, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Older Worker Protection Act, and all other state, federal, and local equal opportunity laws. You may contact any of the following people at 2901 Falk Rd., Vancouver, WA, 98661, or by writing to them at VPS, PO Box 8937, Vancouver, WA 98668-8937 or by calling 360-313-1000: ADA & Affirmative Action/Title IX Coordinator––; Title VII, 504–; IDEA–; Title IX Elementary–; Athletic Equity & Title IX Secondary– This notification can be provided in the appropriate language for communities of national origin and minority persons with limited English language skills by contacting 360-313-1250.