A gunman has fatally shot a student at a high school near the US city of Portland, Oregon police say.

Authorities said on Tuesday the suspect was also dead and the situation had stabilised.

The Multnomah County sheriff's office said there were reports of shots fired about 8am at Reynolds High School in Troutdale.

TV news footage showed students being led from the school with their hands on their heads.

News agency the Associated Press said students inside the school were texting with their parents.

A parent interviewed on TV said she had heard from her son inside the school that he was OK, but she was worried.

Police told parents to go to a nearby parking lot to meet with their sons and daughters as they evacuated the school.

Increasingly common 

Shootings at schools and college campuses in the US, where there generally is easy access to guns, are an increasingly common occurrence.

Last week, a lone gunman entered a small university in Seattle, and shot and killed one person and injured two.

The 26-year-old suspect is being held without bail. Police alleged he had no connection to the university, but was planning to kill as many people as he could before killing himself.

Gun control is a divisive issue in the United States, where the right to bear arms is enshrined in the Constitution, beside basic rights such as free speech and freedom of religion.

President Barack Obama's plan for broader background checks on gun purchases, along with proposals for a ban on military-style assault rifles and limits on ammunition capacity, failed last year in Congress.

This was despite the December 2012 killings of 20 children and six adults at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, that shocked the nation.

Source: Agencies