Update: August 16, 2021

Dear HCCS families,

We hope that your summer has been safe and enjoyable. We are looking forward to the start of a new school year and opening our doors for face-to-face instruction with your children. We have been excitedly preparing our classrooms and campus in preparation for the first day of school on August 23rd, 2021.

As we open our doors, Idaho continues to monitor its cases of COVID-19. With that in mind, HCCS Board of Directors and school personnel will also monitor our local community spread of COVID-19 and its impact on the school. We will continue to work toward anticipating the needs of our students in order to have a successful in-person school experience this year. We believe our students’ educational needs are extremely important and our teachers, administration and support staff will continue to work to that end.

Our intent is to open up the school year with face-to-face instruction as outlined in our HCCS Board Approved Reopening Plan, developed in conjunction with feedback from SW District Health and other health and state leaders, which includes details on what the stages of schooling would look like based on school and community spread of COVID-19. Please review the reopening plan, found on our school website, and keep in mind, as many health leaders in our nation have stated, “no single action or set of actions will completely eliminate the risk of COVID-19 transmission, but implementation of several coordinated interventions (as listed in our reopening plan) can greatly reduce that risk” (American Academy of Pediatrics). As you’re also aware, plans of this nature are subject to change as increased understanding of the virus and best practices for reducing community spread change. We appreciate your patience as such changes occur.

Some highlights and updates included in the Board Approved Reopening Plan include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Facemasks are optional
  • Daily temperature checks of all staff and students upon entering the building will continue
  • Parents are encouraged to check students’ temperatures and screen for symptoms of Covid-19 prior to sending them to school
  • School community events will be conducted virtually in order to minimize large group exposures to COVID-19. (Meet-the-teacher, open house, PTSO sponsored events, assemblies, etc.)
  • Daily and frequent cleaning and disinfecting of common areas/frequently touched areas will continue
  • Procedures are developed for parents and visitors to the school, following CDC guidelines. We ask that you please call ahead prior to arriving at the school. Non-essential visitors will continue to be restricted from campus
  • Procedures will continue to be in place when a child, visitor or staff member becomes sick at school
  • Based on the fluid situation of the current pandemic and its effect in our community and school, the HCCS school board will continue to work closely with school administration and health officials in making decisions on the status of face-to-face instruction for the current school year. These considerations will be based on consultations with health experts

We appreciate your flexibility and understanding as we work to make sure we are making the most timely and informed decisions as possible. As the school year nears, please monitor school communication for additional clarifying information for your family. Your help in assisting us with the safety protocols listed above will go a long way toward keeping our students and school personnel healthy.

We look forward to proving a safe and excellent school year!

Sincerely, HCCS School Board and Dr. Castaneda

UPDATE: August 17, 2020

Dear HCCS Parents,

As the spread of Covid-19 continues to be a high-level concern in our community, HCCS administration and Board of Trustees have monitored carefully the data provided by SW District Health for our area. This evening our Board met in a special meeting and in compliance with the adopted school reopening plan, voted to begin the 2020-2021 school year in Phase 3- Level Red (school at home) through first quarter (Oct. 16, 2020).

This decision came after weeks of study on the part of each Board member and consultation with school and health officials.

We have been planning for this potential outcome and feel confident HCCS teachers and staff will provide a strong and outstanding education for our students. You will notice that online/at-home instruction will look different than last Spring when we were all caught off guard by the sudden closure. We have learned valuable lessons from our prior experience. Our tools, lessons, and approach will be designed to engage your child and provide additional personal support as they take part in new learning. Devices will be made available to students as needed.

We appreciate your support and patience. As a school of choice, we are going to work hard to provide your child with the excellent learning experience you have entrusted us with. We will continue to monitor the health status of our community and hope the health and safety measures will quickly result in the return of our students back into our classrooms.

Please be on the lookout for additional information in the coming days in the form of personal contact from teachers, meal and device information and more.

We love and miss you all.


Dr. Javier Castaneda, EdD and HCCS Board of Trustees

UPDATE: April 7, 2020

Dear HCCS Parents and Staff,

I want to begin by thanking you for all your support and hard work as together, both school and home, tackle this unprecedented challenge we find ourselves in with COVID-19. Your encouragement and thoughtful emails have been appreciated.

As many of you are already aware, as a continued response to the COVID-19 crisis, the Idaho State Board of Education recommended that Idaho School’s continue with a “soft close” through the remainder of the school year. This means all students throughout Idaho state, including HCCS students, will remain off campus and will continue with remote learning and instruction through May 21st.

That being said, in the unlikely event that the COVID-19 pandemic subsides and State Board and Southwest District Health criteria are met, the State Board left the door open for individual districts to decide to return to the classroom. Those conditions are being finalized and will be shared out once completed.

Continue reading Superintendent’s April 7th Message

UPDATE: March 27, 2020

Dear Parents,

As Spring break draws to a close, many of you are already aware of the Idaho State Board of Education’s mandate of a soft closure for all public school in the state, which will last at least until April 20.

Our teachers have been preparing for remote learning over these last few days in anticipation that this announcement would be made. By now you should have received some form of communication from them via Bloomz. If you are not yet connected to Bloomz, I would strongly encourage you to do so. If you have not received an invitation, please email your child’s teacher directly. Each class or course will have a slightly different format, to better accommodate the needs and challenges of our students.

Classroom lessons will begin this coming Monday, March 30, 2020. Our teachers will begin slowly, testing our ability to reach each student. While Bloomz will consistently be our communication format, lesson formats will vary depending on the grade level and teacher. Some lessons will have an online format, such as Google Classroom or Zoom. Others will be in online PDF packet formats or available for pickup in the school office. We are making decisions on the best format to pick up packets based on the communication between families and teachers.

At this time, we believe that we can complete our education requirements for the year without requiring additional days at the end of May.  This, of course, is subject to change.

Continue reading Superintendent’s March 27th Message

UPDATE: March 23, 2020

Dear Parents and Staff,

Late this afternoon, as a response to the COVID-19 crisis, the Idaho State Board of Education approved a “soft close” of the state’s schools through April 20. This means all students throughout Idaho state, including HCCS students, will not be on campus through that date.

Fortunately, we are blessed at HCCS with excellent teachers and staff and we’ll do all we can to continue providing instruction in a “virtual format” to your students. That planning has already begun to be developed in teacher lesson plans and further planning will happen with the HCCS School Board, Administration and staff.

What does that mean for us after Spring Break?
The State Board directed districts to provide instructional opportunities to the best of their ability during this time where students are not on campus.

Plans that address school lunch, instruction, Special Education and other key elements will be finalized soon and sent to you via messenger. At this time it’s critical that you join your classroom teacher’s Bloomz account(s). You should have received invitations in your email or by phone text. It’s a great tool during the normal school year, it’ll be even more helpful at this time.

Continue reading Superintendent’s Message

UPDATE: March 13, 2020

Friday, March 13, 2020

Dear HCCS Families,

HCCS has begun it’s 2-week spring break and we hope you and your students enjoy a restful and productive break. Teachers today are working on student grades and completing report cards which will be sent home the week we return from break.

As part of our work today, and in light of the concerns about the potential outbreak of Coronavirus (COVID-19) here in Idaho, we are working on making sure we are prepared in the case should there be need for a school closure. We hope this isn’t the case but want to be prepared should we face that need.

As part of that preparation, I am strongly encouraging our families to subscribe to each classroom Bloomz account. Bloomz is our classroom communication app that allows classroom teachers to directly communicate with parents about the work that happens in the classroom, including shared photos, projects, and teacher posts. This would provide you with uninterrupted communication with each grade-level classroom teacher should we need to provide instruction in case of a school closure directly to families and students in their home. HCCS teachers will be sending out invites again to all families via email and text messaging. We encourage you to please accept the invitation and install the app or access the website.

Continue reading March 13th Superintendent Message