Stevenson-Carson Sch. Dist.
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News Releases
Stevenson Carson School District announced the reopening of Wind River Middle School (closed since 2012) on October 12, 2020
Stevenson Carson School District announced the reopening of Wind River Middle School (closed since 2012) on October 12, 2020
Stevenson-Carson School District partners with community members and area businesses to offer free Internet Cafes for students (Photo) - 10/26/20

Monday, October 26, 2020-Stevenson, WA-Stevenson-Carson School District now offers students access to free Internet Cafes thanks to partnerships with local businesses and community members. The Port of Skamania, the Economic Development Council, and the Stevenson-Carson Education Foundation donated space and resources to ensure all of the community’s students can have the access they need. 

“Many families in Stevenson and Carson do not have access to the Internet and that can make distance learning complicated, to say the least,” said Superintendent Ingrid Colvard. “Thanks to the dedication and generosity of several local organizations and members of our community, we’re proud to offer Internet Cafes with free high-speed access for students at different locations in our towns.” 

The district’s Internet Cafes operate from 8:15 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. each weekday and are staffed with knowledgeable school employees who can assist students, if needed. Families can reserve time-slots where students will be provided with private cubicles which will be deep-cleaned after each use to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

Families can reserve time at any of the following locations:

The Port of Skamania County and the Skamania County Economic Development Council (EDC) teamed up to provide the North Bonneville location and to ensure it had the Internet access necessary to work for area students.  “When I heard most of our rural areas didn’t have fast enough internet for homes to connect effectively to learn online, I reached out to Superintendent Colvard to ask what we could do,” said Kevin Waters, Executive Director for the EDC who connected with the Port of Skamania to establish the North Bonneville location. “Being the Director of the EDC and also serving on the education foundation meant I knew we could move funds to the foundation to help the district with the cost of the cafes.”

For Waters, a fourth-generation resident of Skamania County, the district’s small size presents its biggest strength. “The schools offer a small community atmosphere thanks to their size,” he said. “I attended K-12 here and the students in my class seemed more like family by the time we graduated; I have always appreciated that.”

Looking to the future of the area’s schools, Waters worries about the quality of student learning and the potential effects the failure of November’s replacement levy will have on the area as a whole. “Without the levy, great teachers will not want to work here and we also won’t have the money for programs to get kids involved,” he said. “Poor schools will lessen families’ want to move here or have their kids attend our schools.”

Waters, who founded Backwoods Brewing Company, owns the Maple Leaf Events Center, and rents out three cabins, sees partnerships between the schools and community businesses as key to their mutual success and leading to the improvement of educational opportunities for the community’s children. “I believe there are a lot of businesses that make a good amount of money from the area but have never contributed to anything in Skamania County,” he said. “I proposed that the school foundation work with those businesses to build partnerships leading to new educational programs and scholarships for our schools; these same companies partner with bigger districts’ foundations so I do not see why they would not be willing to partner with us as well.”

When asked what he thought about the district’s decision to reopen Wind River Middle School to accommodate social distancing and offer better learning opportunities to students, Waters was emphatic,” Three words – best decision ever.”

The Stevenson-Carson School District would like to acknowledge and thank the businesses and community members whose contributions made these internet cafes possible. “I am incredibly grateful for the communities of Stevenson and Carson and their ongoing support of their community schools,” said Superintendent Colvard. “By partnering together, we help to ensure our students have the opportunities they need to succeed under all circumstances.”  

To learn more about how Stevenson-Carson School District educates our students and serves the community, visit the district webpage at


Wind River Middle School in Carson, Wash.
Wind River Middle School in Carson, Wash.
Stevenson-Carson School District announces grand reopening of Wind River Middle School with return of sixth grade to full-time school starting Wednesday, November 4 (Photo) - 10/16/20

Friday, October 16, 2020-Stevenson, WA-Stevenson-Carson School District proudly announces the entire sixth grade class will make their return to Wind River Middle School with full-time school starting on Wednesday, November 4. The district recently made the decision to reopen the school, which had been closed since 2012, after determining the need for additional space and a dedicated facility for sixth to eighth grade students far outweighed the negligible financial savings stemming from its closure. 

When sixth graders return to in-person schooling on November 4, Stevenson-Carson School District will be among the first in Washington State to see the return of all students in grades K-6 to full-time in-person learning. “Both our families and our teachers have wanted a return to full-time school where in-person teaching has the greatest impact on student learning,” said Superintendent Ingrid Colvard. “I am so proud of our staff for helping make this happen, and I am incredibly grateful for the ongoing support the Stevenson-Carson community shows their schools.”  

In order to accommodate sixth graders’ return to full-time in-person learning while still closely following the Skamania County Health Department’s guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the district staff designed a plan separating the middle school’s gymnasium into sixth grade class “pods” using dividers to allow for appropriate social distancing. "The administrative team will work closely with teaching staff to design the most effective approach to in-school learning while serving students continuing to learn remotely; we have collaborated frequently with county health officials to be certain our plan is as safe as possible." said Colvard. “While we know a gymnasium might not make an ideal classroom, we believe that our families will agree that many sixth graders who are struggling with remote learning need to return to school.” 

Wind River Middle School will reopen on a reduced daily schedule similar to the one planned for use by Carson Elementary School in order to provide custodial staff with additional time to ensure deep and thorough cleaning of the facility following each school day. Additionally, the district will continue to work closely with the county health department to ensure all appropriate protocols and procedures are in place to protect students and staff. “The health and safety of our students and staff in the building remains our paramount priority,” said Colvard. “We are taking every possible precaution so we can continue to offer full-time, in-person learning even during these unprecedented times, however, we must remain vigilant that the possibility of temporarily returning to remote learning in the event of increased cases does exist.” 

In order to prevent any significant additional costs to the district as a result of recreating a 6-8 middle school, the same administrative team currently overseeing high school and middle school students at Stevenson High School will remain in place, now supervising both school facilities. “Principal William Schwan and Assistant Principal Kelli Dizmang will continue to serve as the administrative team for all grades 6-12 with one administrator stationed at Stevenson High School and the other stationed at Wind River Middle School,” explained Colvard. “The district will remain fiscally responsible stewards of the funds provided by our taxpayer, particularly during these uncertain financial times.” 

Families with sixth grade students who prefer to remain with distance learning can opt to stay with Stevenson-Carson Learning Link, the district’s distance learning program, rather than returning to in-person school. “While many parents share their desire for a return to in-person learning, I also understand families who remain concerned about an in-person environment,” said Colvard. “In order to respect both outlooks, we offer parents the choice whether their students return for full-time, in-person school or continue to learn remotely from home.” 

To learn more about how Stevenson-Carson School District educates our students and serves the community, visit the district webpage at


Stevenson-Carson School District reopens Wind River Middle School in Carson, Wash.
Stevenson-Carson School District reopens Wind River Middle School in Carson, Wash.
Stevenson-Carson School District announces reopening of Wind River Middle School, closed since 2012 (Photo) - 10/12/20

Monday, October 12, 2020-Carson, WA-Stevenson-Carson School District proudly announces the reopening of Wind River Middle School in Carson, Washington for students in grades 6-8. The building had been closed since 2012 for perceived savings in operations, however, the unprecedented challenges facing the district due to the pandemic led Superintendent Ingrid Colvard and the Board of Directors to reevaluate the school’s closure. 

When Colvard and the board reviewed the cost of operating the building, they determined that the district never recouped the savings initially estimated leading to the school’s closure. “The cost of operating a school comes mainly from the size of overall student enrollment, not the facility itself,” explained Colvard. “Since the district still had the same number of students after the school’s closure that it had before closing the school, the savings ended up being nowhere near enough to justify leaving a functional facility shuttered, particularly given our current needs.” 

The Board of Directors voted to reopen Wind River Middle School to accommodate social distancing for COVID-19; to provide a more age-appropriate atmosphere by separating middle school students from much older high school students; and to plan for a future of potentially providing more robust learning opportunities if taxpayers vote to replace the Educational Programs & Operations (EP&O) Levy expiring at the end of 2020. 

Offering a more age-appropriate learning environment for students 

Following the school’s closure in 2012, the district’s middle school students have been housed in the same facility as the high school, resulting in a socially disparate atmosphere. “The age discrepancy between the current facility’s youngest students and its oldest students means that 12-year-olds are walking the same halls with 18-year-olds,” said Colvard. “Studies have shown that such an age gap can impede the learning and social development of younger students.” 

The need of physical space to fight an ongoing pandemic  

In addition to resolving the age discrepancy by once again separating middle school students from high school students, the additional facility may permit students to make the transition from remote learning to returning to school earlier thanks to the extra physical space. “Social distancing demands a lot of physical room, something that would be difficult to accomplish with so many students in the Stevenson High School building,” said Colvard. “By reopening Wind River Middle School, we have significantly more room at both facilities which will help support the transition to in-person learning.” 

Planning for the future of Wind River Middle School 

During the Board of Directors’ October 8 work session meeting, the board discussed possible plans for the future of Wind River Middle School.  “We should ensure we are offering our middle school students the opportunities to explore CTE,” said Board Chair Jeff Wickersham. “Allowing students to discover CTE at a younger age could be key to increasing interest at the high school level.” Wickersham also suggested holding open computer lab sessions for students to learn coding and experiment with computer science as an extracurricular opportunity. 

Board members also suggested offering additional enrichment classes in art, robotics, and even secondary-language opportunities potentially starting in the sixth grade. “We want to offer a rich, world-class education for our kids,” said Colvard. “I’m very excited about the ideas presented by the board and what they could mean for a well-rounded educational experience for the community’s children.” 

Outside of school hours, the board emphasized the importance of using the facility as a touchstone for the Carson community. Board members discussed opening the school for community musical performances in the dedicated band and music room; and the potential of offering open gym sessions after school for exercise and athletics. “The Carson community has spoken to the need of having two dedicated schools in each of the towns our district serves,” said Colvard. “Schools offer places for community members to hold meetings, concerts, and enjoy extracurricular activities when not in school hours, and the board and I believe Carson deserves to have this facility open once again.” 

However, many of the ideas and concepts brainstormed by the board will depend on the community’s decision whether or not to replace the replacement EP&O levy which will be on the ballot before voters for the November 3 election. “We are still working toward the passage of our replacement levy as we will need those funds to engage any of these ideas,” said Wickersham. “These are ideas we would love to do for our students, and while these suggestions won’t be implemented tomorrow, we need to continue pushing forward to take steps to make this happen eventually for our students.” 

Help guide the district in planning for the future of Wind River Middle School! 

Stevenson-Carson School District invites and encourages the community to provide ideas for the future of Wind River Middle School.  

If you have an idea, suggestion, or question regarding the reopening of Wind River Middle School, please reach out to Superintendent Ingrid Colvard directly via email at or by calling the district office at (509) 427-5674. 

Learn more about Stevenson-Carson School District

To learn more about how Stevenson-Carson School District is teaching our community’s children and partnering with the community to provide opportunities and resources whenever possible during the pandemic, visit the district website at