Image of Letter Postponing School Start Date to Sept. 28th

September 15, 2020

5:00 p.m. Update

Dear Eagle Families, 

First and foremost, I hope you are all doing OK. As a community, we have been through a lot in the last 8 days and I want you to know that the McKenzie School District stands by ready to help in any way it can. Please don’t hesitate to reach out with what you need. Staff will do our best to get you connected to the right resources.

Today I reach out with some additional news regarding the start of the school year.

McKenzie School District leadership has chosen to delay the start of the school year to Monday, September 28 for ALL students. The Holiday Farm Fire has affected many in our school community – including staff, students and their families – and we believe that beginning the school any year sooner would be a challenge for many of our families.

In the coming days our staff will be reaching out to you and your students directly, to check on you and provide what information we have available regarding technology, school supplies, schedules and other details. 

For now, below are some resources that may assist you as we move through this challenging time. Please take care of yourselves, stay connected to us so that we can best support you, and know that together we will make it through.


Before school begins in earnest, I want to make sure that you and your family have what you need. If you have not connected with the Red Cross, we encourage you to do so. There are shelters set up across the state to support all of us affected by these fires. The Red Cross has access to a number of helpful resources and can also refer you to even more resources.

Supports for displaced families can be found at

You can also follow the Red Cross on Facebook at: and online at: You can also reach them by phone at (503) 284-1234.

For those in need of mental health or health supports, here are Holiday Farm Fire stress-support resources.

Emotional Support: 1(800)923-HELP (4357)

Disaster Stress: 1(800)985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746

In-Person Crisis Support: The Graduate Hotel, 66 E. 6th Ave., Eugene, The Graduate Hotel in Eugene, M-F, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. & 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.


Most school districts in Oregon are offering free meals, each weekday at school sites. I encourage you to take a look at free meal locations nearest to where you are sheltering right now. Our partner district in Springfield is happy to support your children, ages 0-18, with free meals at these locations.  

You can also reach out to the Red Cross for information on meals in your area.

We’re here for you  

We know that this natural disaster that has ripped our community is an additional, traumatic layer to an already complex year. We also know that families are still working to navigate COVID-19 and all of the complications associated with the virus, as well as a totally new approach to learning.

Ultimately all of our decisions will be grounded in what is best for the members of our school community, and we are hopeful that this additional week will allow us to not only take care of each other, but also to ensure that we are organized and have what we need to get the school year started.

Thank you for your patience and understanding as we work through yet another challenging issue. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us – our team is here for you. Together we continue to navigate these challenges and take care of one another. 


Lane Tompkins