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Full days, masks on: Malheur County heads back to school

Drew Barnes, automotive instructor at Vale High School, prepares for his students to come back to school during the last week of summer break on Thursday, Aug. 12. (AUSTIN JOHNSON/The Enterprise)

UPDATED Aug. 24 with an interview with Scott Poncy.

VALE – The school year is starting with Harper and Jordan Valley in school since Monday, Aug. 16, Vale and Ontario beginning Friday and Nyssa and Adrian starting school Monday, Aug. 23. 

Enrollment, though it may fluctuate still due to the new masking mandate, is up across most districts after a year during which distance learning during Covid pushed some families to pull their kids out of district schools for other options. 

Local districts reported their enrollments as of Aug. 16: Ontario, 2,306; Nyssa, 1,208; Vale, 875 . . .