HRCSD Update

February 11, 2021

Message from Superintendent, Rich Polkinghorn

Dear Hood River County School District families,


Hood River County School District (HRCSD) is planning to reopen its schools for in-person instruction on Monday, March 8, 2021, beginning with its youngest students and adding grade levels over time.


In this update, you will learn more information about the following topics:

  • HRCSD’s plans to reopen its schools for in-person instruction on March 8

  • Oregon Health Authority’s (OHA) update on COVID-19 in Hood River County

  • HRCSD’s family information session on February 18 regarding the reopening schools

HRCSD plans to reopen schools for in-person instruction

HRCSD is announcing the following timeline for reopening its schools. HRCSD’s phase-in approach is following the Oregon Department of Education (ODE) recommendations for returning to in-person instruction. For more details on HRCSD’s plans to reopen schools, please review the return to in-person instruction phase-in plan.

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For more information about ODE’s guidance for reopening schools, please review Ready Schools, Safe Learners (RSSL). This guide book includes ODE’s requirements and recommendations for returning to in-person instruction, including health protocols, school facilities and operations, and instructional models.

OHA provides update on COVID-19 in Hood River County

On Monday, Feb. 8, 2021, OHA released the latest county health data for the past two-weeks. Hood River County reported 45 COVID-19 cases and 3.20% test positivity rate, which moved HRCSD into the yellow zone of the ODE general metrics.


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Hood River County Health Department supports HRCSD in providing on-site learning to elementary students, provided that all schools followed closely the health and safety protocols in the Operational Blueprints. To prepare for reopening schools as soon as it was possible, HRCSD staff developed these blueprints and the county health department and school board of directors reviewed the plans prior to their submission to ODE. HRCSD staff are reviewing these blueprints against the updated RSSL guidance announced in mid-January 2021 to ensure HRCSD schools meet and/or exceed the health and safety protocols required by the state.

Family Information Session Regarding the Reopening of Schools

On Thursday, Feb. 18, Superintendent Rich Polkinghorn and HRCSD staff will host a session surrounding plans to reopen schools for in-person instruction. The session will begin with a brief presentation on the phase-in plan for returning to in-person instruction, continue with a question and answer session, and conclude with a presentation on ways to support your students as they return to school. Please submit your questions in advance, if possible, using this Google Form or by contacting your neighborhood school office. The Google Meet link may be found on the district’s website. The recording of the session will be posted to the district’s website. The session will be held from 5pm to 6pm in English and it will be held from 6pm to 7pm in Spanish.


Thank you for your continuous support during these unprecedented times. Please feel free to reach out to the school district office or your neighborhood school office if you have any questions.


My best,

Rich Polkinghorn, Superintendent

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