Frequently Asked Questions
7. Does full day kindergarten make a difference in student learning?220.127.116.11. Where is the Hood River County School District?The Hood River County School District is located approximately 60 miles east from Portland, Oregon. Hood River County is bound by the Columbia River on the north and the Cascade Range on the south. As the second smallest of Oregon's 36 counties, it occupies 536 square miles ranging in elevation from 70 feet above sea level in Hood River to 11,245 feet at the peak of Mt. Hood; the highest point in Oregon. Hood River County was first settled in 1854 and the first school was built in 1863. The county's population is concentrated in the Hood River Valley and along the Columbia River, with Hood River, Cascade Locks, Odell, and Parkdale as the largest population centers. The economic base historically centers around the timber and fruit orchard industries. Over 14,000 acres of commercial orchards help make Hood River famous for its pears, apples, and cherries. Recently, light industry, telecommunications, and expanding tourism have added to the growing economic health of the county. Growth in the service sector, and particularly recreation, has transformed Hood River County into one of the premier recreational areas in the region. Sailboarding, swimming, boating, fishing, golfing, hiking, and camping attract many people to the county during the summer; snowboarding and skiing provide the winter attractions. Spring and fall festivals further encourage a number of visitors to enjoy the beauty and diversity of the valley. 2. How many students are in the district and how many schools does the district have?
There were 4,150 students enrolled in the HRCSD for the 2015-2016 school year.
There are five elementary schools, two middle schools, one high school, in the Hood River County School District. Elementary schools include kindergarten through grade 5. The two middle schools include grades 6 through 8, and the high school consists of grade 9 through 12.
3. What is the average number of students per teacher?
Average class size (2012-2013 school year):
K-5th: 25 students (range 16 to 31)
6-8th: 23 students
9-12th: (Hood River Valley) 22.3 students
4. What is the pupil expenditure in the school district?
The amount of state school funding per student for the past six years is:
2013-2014 $6,691 2012-2013 $6,046 2011-2012 $5,911 2010-2011 $5,749 2009-2010 $5,912 2008-2009 $5,827 5. How does the District standardized test scores compare with other districts? The Academic Test Scores for the HRCSD can be reviewed and compared at the Oregon State Department of Education. 6. What is the ethnic enrollment in the school district? Minority students make up approximately 49.9% of total enrollment. This includes 44.3% Hispanic, 1.3% Asian, .9% African American, and 1.2% Native American. This data is based on 2010-2011 enrollment. 7. What percentage of the district's budget is spent directly on the classroom? The Oregon Department of Education provides detailed information on Operating Expenditure per Student by School. Go to www.ode.state.or.us/sfda/reports/r0059Select.asp, select the year and submit your query. Then select the Hood River School District and click on View Report, located in the upper right hand corner of the website. 8. How is the District funded, and when was the last levy passed? The latest Local Option Levy recently passed in May 2008, was passed again in 2012, and most recently in 2018. 9. How many members does the Board of Directors have and how often does the Board meet? The School Board currently has six Board members, one Member at Large, and one Ex-officio member. The Board generally meets twice a month on Wednesday evenings, unless school vacations or other holidays interrupt the schedule. Meetings begin at 6:30 pm and are held at the District office. Agendas are posted the Friday previous to that month's meeting date. Minutes are posted after approval from the school board. What are the enrollment projections for the school district?The HRCSD is experiencing an ongoing stability in the school population in all school levels. 2. Are there new schools planned for the future?The HRCSD is currently in the process of researching available property for expansion of the schools. 3. What programs are available for gifted students?For detailed information on the Talented and Gifted Students (TAG) program, please click here. 4. What is the District's philosophy concerning inclusion?Hood River County School District is dedicated to assuring the equality of educational opportunities for all students. Special Education services are available in the HRCSD for all students who have been identified as eligible for special education services. Special Education staff provides instruction utilizing research-based best practices for students receiving Special Education services. Staff is provided with on-going professional development to assure students receive the best instruction possible. 5. What is the age to enroll my child in kindergarten?Proof of age is required for entering kindergartners and first graders. A child may be admitted to kindergarten if, and only if, his or her 5th birthday occurs on or before September 1st. A child entering the first grade may be admitted if, and only if, his or her 6th birthday occurs on or before September 1st. For more information regarding requirements for school entrance, click here. 6. Does the school district offer all day kindergarten?The Hood River County School District offers full-day kindergarten in all of its elementary schools. 7.
Does full day kindergarten make a difference in student learning?
Yes, in national studies and our own analysis of HRCSD data, students in full-day programs show more academic growth than in half-day kindergarten programs. This seems to be especially true for English Language Learners (about 30% of HRCSD students) and for students in poverty (57% of HRCSD students qualify for free and reduced school meals).
Full-day versus Half-day Kindergarten Research Findings
For the purposes of this synopsis, recent articles regarding the effectiveness of full-day versus half-day kindergarten were reviewed and summarized.
Summary of Findings:
- Students in Full-Day kindergarten have higher achievement in academic areas at the end of kindergarten. This finding also holds true for sub-groups (English language learners and students in poverty) with some evidence that it makes more difference for those students.
- The difference between the achievement of Full-Day Kindergarten and Half-Day Kindergarten students persists over time--depending on the study, through 1st, 3rd, or 8th grade.
- Full-Day Kindergarten students have fewer retentions (repeating a grade).
- There is slight evidence that Full-Day Kindergarten reduces special education referrals.
- Student behaviors tend to be more positive and more related to successful school behavior in Full-Day Kindergarten students.
It is reassuring to see the increasingly robust results of the national and state-level studies. It supports HRCSD evidence that the full-day program makes a difference for students in terms of their early literacy development. Literacy and reading achievement, based on our DIBELS data, shows increased learning for the Full-Day kindergarten students than for our earlier Half-Day Kindergarten data.
8. How do I find out where my child will attend school?Please call the Hood River County School District office for information regarding which school your child(ren) will attend - 541-387-5013 9. What if parents want their child to attend school out of their attendance area? 10. What is the policy on visiting schools in the district?The board encourages parents and other district citizens to visit the school and classrooms at any time to observe the work of students, teachers and other employees. To assure that no unauthorized persons enter a school, all parents and visitors will report to the school office when entering and will receive authorization to visit elsewhere in the building. (See Board Policy KK) 11. Are there alternative educational programs offered? Alternative education program options have been established by Hood River County School District. Click here to read more....