4 preschool students with blue graduation caps on their heads

Our Philosophy

Together we will reach,
teach and
each student
to excellence.

WHS seniors in graduation cap and gowns walking down a hallway giving 5's to elementary students

Bethel's History

Bethel School District is the third largest district in Lane County. Located in northwest Eugene, the District encompasses 31 square miles and features bike trails, wetlands, public parks, streams and a portion of Fern Ridge Reservoir. We are situated in the Willamette Valley, a little more than an hour’s drive west to the Pacific Ocean and east to the Cascade Mountains.

Bethel School District was formed in 1948 with the consolidation of the Bethel, Irving, Clear Lake, Danebo, and Malabon school districts. Willamette High School opened in September of 1949 with an enrollment of 381. Alvadore was the last of six small districts to join Bethel in 1960.

Bethel is home to approximately 5,200 wonderfully diverse students and 800 dedicated employees who make up the Bethel Family. The District includes five K-5 elementary schools, two K-8 schools, two middle schools, an alternative high school and a comprehensive high school.


Languages spoken
Group of people surrounding a man holding giant scissors cutting a ribbon in front of a building

With a population of 38,000, the Bethel community has shown exceptional support for its schools. In November 2020, Bethel School District’s $99.3 million bond was passed with a 66% Yes vote. It is the largest bond in District history. This follows a $49.5 million bond in 2012 that was approved with a 73% Yes vote.

Strong parental involvement is characteristic of Bethel School District. The Bethel Education Foundation, formed in 2009 by a group of engaged and caring parents, has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars which are passed on to teachers in the form of grants to supplement programs and initiatives in our schools. Active and effective PTOs provide important support to our schools, and volunteers with the Bethel Boosters have assisted District students for decades.


Our Community

District Graduation Rate at an All Time High!

For the second year in a row, Bethel’s high school graduation rate has reached an all-time high!
With Willamette reaching 83.5% and Kalapuya 63%, the District’s overall grad rate is 79%. There has been a systematic outreach in Bethel by teachers, administrators, and all school staff to make sure no students slip through the proverbial cracks.

An all-time high is the right trajectory, but efforts are continuing in order to improve these numbers until every student earns a diploma. At high school, the work begins in freshman year with a significant effort to keep 9th graders on-track toward graduation. The more success a student experiences at the start of their high school years, the more likely they will continue that success through graduation.

Kalapuya’s grad numbers are simply spectacular. KHS has traditionally been a school for students who have struggled at a large traditional high school, and who typically arrive severely deficient in credits and way behind schedule to graduate. The KHS 5-year grad rate of 74% is remarkable, and a testament to the resilience of students and the unwavering support of staff.

Our Staff

Teacher of the Year Nicole standing with her husband and two children in front of a banner
The district is proud to be represented by the 2021 Oregon Teacher of the Year, Nicole Butler of Irving Elementary. Like Nicole, Bethel staff make strong connections with students and families. They continuously work to improve the quality of education provided at every level and at every opportunity.
The Bethel team is committed to creating safe, caring, mutually respectful environments where all students are honored and valued for their diverse cultural backgrounds, strengths and abilities in every instructional practice and school activity in order to support academic achievement and student success.
Group of students hugging a teacher in a classroom

The Bethel School Board of Directors is an experienced, collaborative and caring group. The average length of service among Board members is 14 years. The Board goals for the current school year are:

  • Provide and support effective, equitable and inclusive pre-K-12 academic, health, and behavior systems that support student achievement, to prepare all students to earn an Oregon diploma
  • Communicate and collaborate with staff, community, legislators, and lobbying partners to provide accurate information and seek appropriate financial resources to meet Oregon’s and Bethel’s education goals for all students
  • Track district growth to ensure proper development and planning for future operation

Our School Board