In the community

Malheur County schools post strong graduation rates, despite pandemic pressures

An Ontario High School classroom sits empty and ready for cleaning in 2020, as districts prepared for new strategies to educate students in the pandemic era. (Enterprise file photo)

For much of the last school year, high school seniors across Malheur County endured disruptions and isolation.

For part of the year, they had no class time. Instead, they took their lessons remotely.

They had no sports. They had no social gatherings.

They lived in pandemic restrictions at school when they did return.

Yet while the percentage of graduates dropped statewide, Malheur County school districts generally posted improved graduation rates or held even.

The Nyssa School District posted the strongest gain, graduating 88% of its seniors in the class of 2021 compared to 81% the year before.

The Ontario School . . .