Hermiston School District is the largest district in Eastern Oregon, exceeding 5,600 students, and continues to experience steady enrollment growth. It serves students in grades kindergarten through 12 with a broad range of programs from foundational learning skills to comprehensive vocational programs to an exhaustive array of post-secondary college credit-bearing opportunities. The school district includes a 9-12 senior high school, two 6-8 middle schools, five K-5 elementary schools, and a robust online learning program option for students and families.
The district employs about 600 full-time staff, which includes approximately 300 teachers; over 200 classified staff members; and many supervisory, professional, and support personnel, making it one of the largest employers in the city of Hermiston. In a nationally-recognized community that embraces its diversity, the district serves some 28,000 residents, where one-third of the population is Hispanic.
The school district prides itself on the academic achievement of its students, successful athletic programs, nationally-recognized club and activity organizations, and its exhaustive list of academic and elective opportunities available to students. The district’s partnership with community organizations has been central to its continued success, highlighted by support groups who provide nearly a half a million dollars annually to assist students and programs, through such venues as the Hermiston Sports Booster Club, Hermiston Education Foundation, Band Boosters, FFA Alumni, and the community-sponsorship of the student homebuilding program, to name a few.
Support for Hermiston School District has been strong from the community. In 2001 voters approved a $39 million building program, which included the reconstruction of the high school, an additional elementary school, and various district-wide renovations. Voters also approved a $69.9 million bond in 2008. The bond served to replace Armand Larive Middle School, West Park Elementary, and Sunset Elementary.
On November 5, 2019, the Hermiston community approved Bond Measure 30-130, an $82.7 million Hermiston School District 25-year bond. The measure will address student capacity, adding 600-student elementary school on Theater Lane and replacing the district’s oldest school, Rocky Heights Elementary, which was built in 1962. The bond also includes an annex to increase capacity at Hermiston High School, site improvements at elementary schools and property acquisition for future growth.
On April 9, 2020, the district’s AA-credit rating enabled the HSD’s bond underwriter, Piper Sandler, to sell the bonds and refinance $2.8 million of a 2010 bond issue. The district gained an additional $1.7 million in bond premium and afforded the Hermiston community a savings of $382,448.
During the bond campaign, voters were told to expect a steady property tax levy rate of approximately $3.65 per $1,000 of assessed value for the life of the bond. Following the bond sale, rates are now expected to drop in 2030 to approximately $2.16 until 2045.
Who We Are:
- The uniqueness of all and the value of diversity
- Fostering self-esteem, trust, and respect
- A collaborative process involving all stakeholders
- Encouraging risk-taking, consistent with these core values
- Reflection and self-renewal
- A rigorous academic experience with high achievement expectations
- A wide range of programs to meet the academic and social needs of all students
- Fully integrated and effective use of technology
- Exemplary staff who continually reflect on their practice, learn and progress
- Use of research-based, best practices teaching methodologies to enhance student learning experiences and the application of concepts
- Faculty who are supportive of community involvement and willing to assist parents in their efforts to help children learn
- A qualified Board of Education and Administration focused on adopting policies to support best teaching practices, student achievement, and fiscal responsibility
- An Administration open to community involvement
- A strong and inclusive leadership team that fosters problem-solving and continuous improvement
- Professional development to enhance the skills and knowledge of people in the organization
- Continual monitoring of each student’s progress through the use of rigorous and meaningful measurement processes
- A robust assessment system that supports data-driven decision-making
- Broad-based business and stakeholder support
- Involvement and partnerships
- Responsive to the needs of parents
- A teaching and learning environment that is physically safe and emotionally secure
- A stimulating learning environment that meets individual student needs and focuses on the whole child
- A culture of respect and connectivity within a professional community
- Comprehensive programs across all campuses
The largest city in eastern Oregon, Hermiston maintains over 17,000 residents and is located in northeastern Oregon, just south of the Oregon-Washington border. The Hermiston School District boundary encompasses over 160 square miles of the Columbia Basin region, whose unique geographical area offers an extended growing season and a variety of agricultural crops and products. The immediate Hermiston area has been able to diversify its economy with food processing, cold storage, warehousing, and distribution facilities. In addition, Hermiston’s close proximity to the Columbia River Gorge and the surrounding Blue Mountains make it an ideal place for outdoor activities, and one of the fastest-growing and economically charged communities in all of Oregon.