▶️ Parents brace for changes to Tumalo Community School


ShanRae Hawkins has two sons who attend Tumalo Community School together.

That is, they will until this fall.

“Disappointing, but understandable,” she said, after learning Tumalo Community School will transition this fall from a K-8 school to K-5 program. Middle schoolers there will be transitioned to Obsidian Middle School this fall.

It’s an effort by the Redmond School District to lower classes, especially in elementary schools.

What it means is Hawkins’ sixth grade son, Grayson, will be going to a new school.

Tumalo was the only [community] school left in the Redmond School District, and so I think we probably always knew in the back of our mind that might go away,” she said. “I was hoping maybe we’d get our kids all the way through Tumalo before that happened.”

Hawkins says she sees why this change is necessary.

Especially because it impacts her kindergarten son, Brogan, so directly.

“While we’re disappointed that our sixth grader will need to find a new place to go to middle school and finish out that, we’re excited that our kindergartner, as he continues to move through Tumalo School, will have the opportunity to be in smaller classrooms,” she said. 

Hawkins was one of many parents who provided input to the district regarding what was and was not working.

Her greatest concern mirrored what concerned many in the district: large class sizes.

“We have two kindergarten classes in Tumalo this year, and they’ve had upwards of 28, 29 kids in them. And it’s really, it’s too many.”

Most middle schoolers at Tumalo students will be transitioned to Obsidian Middle.

Although Hawkins is not sure if that will include her son just yet, she’s not too worried.

“You know there’s just so many great schools in Central Oregon, that we’ll land in a place where he will do well.”


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