Columbia River Weekly Newsletter

October 8, 2021

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Columbia River High School

800 NW 99th ST.

Vancouver WA 98665


Principal/ Head of School - Alex Otoupal

Associate Principal/Curriculum - Rob Duncan

Associate Principal/Activities - Ken Roberts

Associate Principal/Athletic Director - Nick Davies

Report Card

News from the Principal

Fall Conferences: October 21 and 22

We will hold Fall parent/teacher conferences via Zoom later this month.

Conferences will be held on Thursday 10/21 from 2:30-4:30 and 5:00-7:00 pm, and on Friday 10/22 from 7:30 -11:30 am. This year we will continue using to schedule conferences. Conferences will be 15 minutes per scheduled meeting; prior to your scheduled conference, you will be in a “waiting room.” To schedule your preferred time for a parent-teacher conference please take the following steps:

1. Go to

2. Find the name of your child’s teacher and click on the link “Fall Parent/Teacher Conferences

3. Select the desired date/time for your conference by clicking on “Sign Up.”

4. Submit the requested information.

After you schedule a conference online, the date and time are reserved for you. If you entered your email address correctly, you will receive email confirmation of your conference. Your email confirmation will include a link to change or cancel your conference if that is needed.

On the day of your conference use the Teacher Zoom Link page (available on the CRHS website) to find your conference link.

All participants will start in the waiting room and teachers will admit at the scheduled conference time. Again, conferences will be limited to 15 minutes. If a longer meeting time is needed, please schedule for another time.

If you need help signing up, please watch this video:

If you are unable to sign up for a time and date online, please contact our school office at 360-313-3900 and we will help get your conference scheduled.


Alex Otoupal

Varsity Academics Deadline is MONDAY

The CR Varsity Academic Letter program honors students who have consistently shown a high regard for academics, citizenship, and involvement in the school community. After Sophomore year, students may apply for the award. You can find the application here, or stop by the Student Pathways Center for a paper copy. Applications are due by 10/11/21, with the ceremony on October 19th.

Early Release Mondays and Rapid Response: River’s Academic Support Efforts

More information on our Early Release Mondays - Here is a link to all of the details - including the year long schedule.

Assembly Schedule

We will be on the assembly schedule next Friday the 15th for Homecoming.
CRTV October 7, 2021


We have changed dates for the WCAS (Washington Comprehensive Assessment of Science) with the Math Smarter Balanced Assessment. Click here to see the change.

Picture Make-Up Day

Picture retakes are on 10/13/2021. Click here for information.

Red Cross Blood Drive

The Red Cross Blood Drive will be on October 13th. The drive will be held at Salmon Creek Indoor Sports Area from 1-5 pm and is open to all community members. Student sign-ups will take place on campus next week in the Commons during both lunches.


We have had some schedule changes. Continue to check ArbiterLive for the most accurate information. Now that it has started raining, there will be many rainouts for tennis and slow pitch softball. Additionally, due to official shortages, we have moved the times/dates of some varsity football games.

Interested in Winter Sports? FamilyID will open up soon. Until then, please reach out to a head coach if you have any questions. Here is our head coach contact information list.

Clubs and Activities

New club applications are due on October 8, 2021. Students can access all the information they need by visiting this CANVAS Module

PSAT October 26, 2021: Free PSAT for all 10th Grade

This year in an effort to maintain and increase access and equity for all students, Vancouver Public Schools will again pay for all 10th grade students to take the PSAT (Preliminary SAT). The PSAT is a practice college entrance exam most closely linked with the SAT.

Columbia River will be hosting the PSAT for it's students on Tuesday, October 26,2021. Testing will occur during the school day at Columbia River, starting at 7:30 am. All 10th grade students will be automatically registered and expected to participate in the PSAT, unless they choose to OPT OUT. Use this link here, to OPT OUT from the free PSAT. 10th grade students and parents will be emailed this afternoon with more PSAT information. This is a great opportunity for students to take a version of the practice college admissions exam.

Helpful digital resources for families:

Students who need help logging in to Skyward can use these directions to receive an e-mail with their username and a link to create a new password. They can also watch this video on YouTube or EdPuzzle to help walk them through the steps. Students can find more tech support information in the Canvas Toolkit. Tech support is available every school day in the library, temporarily located in our concessions stand in the main hallway across from the upper commons.

Parents and guardians can connect to Canvas as observers to help students stay organized. Find more information here on how to set up your account & watch a helpful video on how it works.

Don’t know your family access login to Skyward to check on grades and attendance? Contact Jolly Monzon in our front office for help:

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Washington State Healthy Youth Survey 2021

Our school is participating in the Washington State Healthy Youth Survey on October 12, 2021. The survey will be given to students in Grades 10 and 12. 10th Graders will take the survey in their English classes. 12th Graders will take the survey in their CWP classes. The Healthy Youth survey includes questions related to physical activity and diet, unintentional and intentional injury, substance use, sexual behaviors, abuse, risk and protective factors, and access to school-based services. Survey results are used by schools, communities and state agencies to plan programs to support our youth and reduce their risks. Participation in the survey is voluntary and the students’ answers are anonymous. We will be administering the survey online this year. No privacy issues were identified in the E-survey pilot conducted in 2019. This year, schools and districts are being instructed to disable any recording, keystroke tracking, and video capture software on school-issued devices used to take the survey. If you use any software to monitor the device your student will use to take the survey. Please read the attached Parent and Student Notification Letter for more information about the Healthy Youth Survey.





Please click on the links below for information on the 2021-2022 Activities and Sports Fair.

Video Introduction

Athletics Web Page

Example of Club Offerings

Club Application


Masks will now be required for some outdoor events. This will impact all football games. Thank you for your understanding!

Outdoor Mask Guidance

Continue to check ArbiterLive for schedule updates

Swim Schedule *note - no spectators are allowed at Saturday’s event.

Cross Country Schedule (with results and invitationals)

Future Monday Early Release Days for the 2021-2022 School Year:

October 11, 18, 25

November 1, 8, 15, 22, 29

December 6, 13

January 3, 10, 24, 31

February 7, 14, 28

March 7, 14, 21, 28

April 11, 18, 25

May 2, 9, 16

COVID-19 symptoms

If your child has any of the following symptoms not caused by another known condition or medication, please have them tested for COVID-19 before returning to school. See box below for when to return to school.

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea


Go to the 2021-2022 Playbook to learn more about important procedures for the start of the 2021-22 school year.

School Supplies

If your student needs school supplies please call the school at 360-313-3900 and ask for Cheri Chavers.

New Logo Information

Rapids Branding Guide - Detailed information on our logo and how to use it.


The graduation ceremony for the Class of 2022 will be held at 5:00 pm on June 13, 2022. The location is yet to be determined.
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Sign Up Now for College & Career Presentations

Career and College Presentations begin next week! Please sign up via the links below, or at one of our sign in tables - near Pathways Center and back door to Senior Parking - and we will send a pass for you to attend.

Cornish College of the Arts 10/12/21 11:00am

Central WA University 10/13/21 10:00am

Gonzaga University (virtual) 10/13/21 11:00am

Western WA University 10/13/21 12:15pm

WSU Vancouver 10/14/21 9:00am

Oregon State University 10/14/21 12:15pm

Scholarship Club

Are you wondering about where to find scholarships and how to apply? Join our Scholarship Club! We meet every other Thursday in the evenings from 6-8p.m., and on opposite weeks we meet right after school from 2:15-3:30 in the Student Pathways Center.

This club isn't just for scholarships! You can also work on college and trade school applications, apprenticeship applications, or other post high school planning during our meetings.

October Schedule:

10/14, 2:15-3p.m.

10/21, 6-8p.m.

10/28, 2:15-3p.m.

Considering Going to a School Next Year? Apply for Financial Aid!


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 to attend a 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

Get started today!

  1. Determine which application you should complete (the FAFSA or WASFA). Unsure? Fill out this questionnaire to find out
  2. If you need to fill out the WASFA, click here. If you need to fill out the FAFSA, follow these next steps:
  3. Create an FSA ID -- you AND your parent will both need an ID
  4. Have your parents' 2020 taxes and w2s (if you worked in 2020, you need your taxes too!)
  5. Head to the FAFSA website to complete the applications

Have questions or feeling confused about this process? Connect with Morgan Parker to set up a time to get questions answered or support on finishing the application.

FAFSA/WASFA Information Sessions

Want to get an overview of financial aid and how to apply? Join us on any of these dates to get an overview, start the application, and ask questions. You must register to attend. Click the links below to register.

Monday, 10/25 (Zoom)

Monday, 11/4 (in person at CRHS)

You can also join the 12th Year Campaign at their virtual financial aid session to get help with important steps you need to take to apply for financial aid. Join one of the events listed here to learn more and get help. Please note, most events are offered virtually.

Upcoming Events

Lifeguard Training and Job Opportunity

Are you interested in becoming a lifeguard or developing new job skills? The Jim Parsley Community Center offers International Lifeguard Training to persons 15 years of age and older. If you want to be a *lifeguard, enroll in this class today! Students who want to work at VPS as a lifeguard can receive a waiver for the $200 course fee upon signing up!

Deadline to apply: October 20, 2021

Shallow water certification classes are on Sunday, 10/24 from 11AM to 7PM. You only need to attend one class to become certified! Register at

  • Oct 24 (11AM to 7PM)

This course is a blend of online learning and hands on in-person training. Once registered, participants will be added to the online learning portion of the class within 24-48 hours. Participants must complete online learning modules and final exam prior to attending the in-person portion of the class.

This course will cover:

  • Basic lifeguard duties
  • Water rescue skills
  • Vigilance awareness training
  • Basic first aid
  • CPR/AED/02 support
  • Customer service and leadership skills

Successful completion of this course includes certification in:

  • Shallow water lifeguarding
  • CPR/AED certification
  • Basic first aid

Vancouver Public Schools is now hiring lifeguards and other aquatics positions. Certification is required and applicants must be 16 years or older to hired at Vancouver Public Schools. To apply or for more information about aquatics jobs, call 360-313-4995 or email

*Upon successful completion of this course, if you are interested in employment with Vancouver Public Schools, a background investigation and fingerprinting is required (fee is $82.00, at the applicant’s expense).

PSU College of Education (virtual) Open House

CONNECT WITH US Friday, Oct. 15th, 3 - 5pm

Connect with faculty, hear about PSU support services, and get valuable information on your program as you make important decisions for your career. Register now so you don't miss out on this great event! Register here.

Internship Opportunities

While you are in Xello working on your High School and Beyond Plan lessons (hint, hint), take a look at the Opportunities listed under Explore Options at the top of the page. Here are a couple that are interesting:

Sports Video Internship

Selected interns will work with TV Studio staff to actively participate in filming, editing and broadcasting VPS sporting events and other TV shoots. Interns will not work longer than 20 hours per week. The students will assist in the production of live sports broadcasts and pre-produced video projects for television and the web. The student must be willing to try various positions within a broadcast environment, including camera; editing; live graphics and video playback; and more. Interested students may also seek on-camera experience, if desired. Contact if interested.

Coding Internship

Interested in coding? Then this REMOTE internship might be for you! NO coding experience is required. The ideal candidate has an interest in learning how to code. They will also have a growth mindset, a friendly personality, empathy for others, and excellent verbal communication skills. This role strikes a balance between learning how to code and communication tasks.

Deepen Your Skills by learning how to code in Python, and work with professionals in the tech industry.


  • *You must be 16 or older
  • *Excellent verbal communication skills
  • *Work 5 to 10 hours per week in remote intern position (TechSmart & VPS CTE team will ensure you have necessary IT equipment to do this role from home).

DEADLINE: October 15, 2021

Scholarship Hot List

Click this link to see available scholarships. Bookmark this link to keep updated on current opportunities.

Looking for Scholarships?

Complete a profile on and be emailed updates with scholarship opportunities you are eligible for.
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.

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The Vancouver School 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 and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts of America, and other designated groups. You may also contact any of the following people by writing to them at Vancouver School District, PO Box 8937, Vancouver, WA 98668-8937, or by calling 360-313-1000: 504 – Steve Vance; Civil Rights and Affirmative Action – Janell Ephraim; ADA and Title IX – Kathy Everidge; Title IX Elementary Schools – Kristie Lindholm; Title IX Secondary Schools – Jim Gray.