Hockinson proposes consolidating schools

By Tyler Graf, Columbian county government reporter

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Hockinson school board members Monday will consider the possibility of combining the school district's primary and intermediate schools for the next school year.

Declining enrollment at the 1,950-student school district is a top factor for the proposed consolidation.

Combining the two schools, which cover kindergarten through the 5th grade, would reduce administrative costs at a time when the district is grappling with a significant reduction in student enrollment because of demographic trends and the sluggish economy, district officials said.

“We are looking at every possible way to provide an even higher quality of education for our students despite a declining enrollment trend,” Superintendent Sandra Yager said in a statement.

A combined K-5 program would be led by a single principal and a part-time assistant principal. One of the full-time principals at Hockinson Heights Primary School and Hockinson Heights Intermediate School would be reassigned to Hockinson High School, where student enrollment remains strong.

The school board meeting will take place at 6 p.m. at the Hockinson High School Library, 16819 N.E. 159th St.