Superintendent Drill's Letters to Families

Superintendent Drill's Back-to-School Messages

Oct. 1, 2021

Cascade Families,

Thank you for a great first month of the school year. Some of the highlights include:

  • Spirit weeks and dress-up days in each school
  • Missoula Children’s Theatre putting together a play in one week with students from every building
  • A new elementary math curriculum that will better serve students regardless of their ability
  • New Career Technical Education (CTE) classes and a CTE career lab
  • Assemblies, athletics, activities and clubs

The biggest highlight is seeing students and staff build relationships with each other and build a sense of community within our classrooms and schools.

With that, we have a few updates and reminders to share with you.


We are continuing to advocate for local control to make our own decisions regarding COVID-19 protocols. I will be meeting with Representative Raquel Moore-Green and the Oregon Department of Education in the next couple of weeks. I am also speaking at an upcoming senate sub-committee. I will discuss the start of the school and its challenges as well as speak to the need for local control. However, until we see those changes, we still have to follow the safety mandates in place.

While we have seen some cases in our schools, these have been isolated incidents and contact tracing has shown that COVID-19 is not spreading in our buildings. We can also limit the number of students who have to quarantine in the event of a positive COVID case. We just have to guarantee masks are worn correctly and proper social distancing measures are in place.

It’s also important to keep your student home when he/she is sick. If you have any questions about whether or not your student can come to school, please see our COVID-19 exclusion guidelines.

Our goal is to have students learning in person. Following these safety guidelines will help us achieve that goal.

Food Services

Our kitchens are experiencing numerous disruptions in supply deliveries. The Oct. menu lists multiple options for each day. Each kitchen will decide the menu for the week based on the food and supplies available. When possible, each school will let families know what is on the menu for that week. Thank you for your understanding.

Breakfast and lunch are free for all students. We still encourage families who qualify for free and reduced lunch to fill out those applications in order to receive other benefits. That application is available here.


We are also experiencing a shortage of bus drivers. Typically, we run 17 or 18 bus routes every day, but so far this year, that has been consolidated to 11. We contract our bussing with the Mid Columbia Bus Company and they continue to work at hiring more drivers. When we get more drivers trained, we will add more bus routes. Thank you for your patience as we work through these challenges.

Again, thank you for helping us get this year off to a strong start. We are grateful for your partnership and look forward to what the rest of the school year will bring.


Darin Drill, Superintendent Cascade School District

Previous Letters
Aug.  30
Sept. 10