About Us

Harney County School District #3 is located in rural Eastern Oregon and serves approximately 800 students in grades K-12.  We provide public education in Burns, Oregon at Slater Elementary School (K-5), Hines Middle School (6-8), and Burns High School (9-12).

Harney County is a rural county in southeastern Oregon. It is a five-hour drive from Portland, Oregon and a three-hour drive from Boise, Idaho. The county is bordered by Grant County (to the north), Malheur County (to the east); the State of Nevada (to the south); and Lake, Deschutes, and Crook counties (to the west).

At 10,226 square miles in size, the county is the largest in Oregon, and one of the largest in the United States; it is larger in area than six U.S. states. The county is the most sparsely populated in Oregon, with a population density of 0.72 per square kilometre. The county has just two incorporated cities: Burns, the county seat and the larger city, with 40 percent of the population, and Hines, with 20 percent of the county's population. About 75 percent of the county's area is federal land, variously managed by the Bureau of Reclamation, BLM, US Fish & Wildlife Service, and US Forest Service. About 10 percent of Harney County's area is part of the Ochoco National Forest and Malheur National Forest. The county also contains the Burns Paiute Indian Reservation within and immediately north of the City of Burns; this 760-acres reservation of the Burns Paiute Tribe is a remnant of the former Malheur Indian Reservation, a 1.5-million-acre federal trust land that was encroached upon by white settlement in the 19th century.

Harney County has a "high desert" topography, with low levels of precipitation. About 500 ranches and farms producing cattle, dairy products and hay operate within the county. Besides ranching and farming, forestry are important industries in the county.

The county is of ecological as well as recreational importance. Along with neighboring Grant County, Harney County has the nation's largest Ponderosa pine forest. The county was also a focus of recent efforts to conserve the sage grouse; in 2014, Harney County ranchers signed 30-year agreements with the federal government to protect the sage grouse. Visitors are attracted to the county for its hunting, fishing, and camping activities.

("Harney County, " Wikipedia, this page was last edited on 21 August 2020, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harney_County,_Oregon)