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As North Eugene HS prepares for demolition, 4J is on fast track to decide the fate of Yujin Gakuen

Screenshot from Eugene 4J May 3 board meeting
Eugene 4J schools
Screenshot from Eugene 4J May 3 board meeting

In April, the Eugene 4J School Board voted to demolish the North Eugene High School building. The decision creates uncertainty for the Yujin Gakuen Japanese immersion school, which was hoping to use the building after North Eugene students vacated it. In 2020, Y-G made a “temporary” move into the Kelly Middle School building, to accommodate NEHS construction.

At last week’s board meeting, Superintendent Andy Dey presented a fast-moving timeline to give Yujin Gakuen clarity on the fate of the school’s location. Dey said he will present facts on potential sites and available funds at next week’s meeting.

"The first phase would be providing you with information about all of the land that’s zoned or potentially available, the funding that we may bring to bear, so that when we do community engagement, and find out what are the wishes of the community, we would have a better sense of what is available, and how likely are we to be able to deliver on those,” he told the board, adding: “I think one of the more frustrating things is asking the community 'what is it you would you like?' without identifying whether or not there are any parameters to that, so I don’t want to do that again.”

Following a public comment period, the board will hear staff recommendations, and decide how to move forward, at the June 21 meeting.

The new North Eugene High School will open in the fall. The community is invited to a farewell tour of the building Thursday from 5 to 9 pm. Classrooms will be decorated to commemorate each decade of the school’s operation, since 1957.

Karen Richards joined KLCC as a volunteer reporter in 2012, and became a freelance reporter at the station in 2015. In addition to news reporting, she’s contributed to several feature series for the station, earning multiple awards for her reporting.