School resumes on Tuesday

The 2003-04 Hood River County School District starts classes Sept. 2, with a new superintendent and new paint, paving and other improvements throughout its facilities. A new paint job at Hood River Valley High School, done this week, is among the more prominent upgrades in the district.

“I’ve been doing this for 30 years, but it’s always exciting,” said Dr. Pat Evenson-Brady Friday of the prospect of opening school doors again Tuesday. Evenson-Brady, a former assistant superintendent with Hood River, took the helm July 1.

She said the district will see big enrollment increases at Wy’east Middle School, with an additional 50 students, in the Hood River Middle School sixth grade, and at Westside Elementary. (All parents of new kindergarten, first and third grade students are asked to enroll at May Street Elementary for the time being.)

The district won’t have overall enrollment figures until later next week, but “if everyone who shows up does so we could have a big increase,” Evenson-Brady said.

She quipped, “There are a lot of new faces, myself among them.” (Turn to page A6 for photos of the district’s new teachers.)

On the 2003-04 budget, Evenson-Brady said that if the just-passed state education budget of $5.205 billion holds firm, the district will avoid making more cuts this year.

She said it is a virtual certainty that the district will need to seek a local tax option to help fund the 2004-05 school year, a course of action she is still researching and discussing with Hood River County officials and other community leaders.

School starts Sept. 2 for all elementary students, sixth graders, and all Cascade Locks students.

HRVHS freshmen start school on Sept. 3; HRVHS students in grades 10-12 start school Sept. 4. Call your individual school for further details.

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Lawnmower torches Arbor Vitae on Portland Drive

The riding lawn mower driven by Norma Cannon overheated and made contact with dry arbor vitae owned by Lee and Norma Curtis, sending more than a dozen of the tightly-packed trees up in flames. The mower, visible at far right, was totaled. No one was injured; neighbors first kept the fire at bay with garden hoses and Westside and Hood River Fire Departments responded and doused the fire before it reached any structures. Westside Fire chief Jim Trammell, in blue shirt, directs firefighters. The video was taken by Capt. Dave Smith of Hood River Fire Department. Enlarge

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