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New principals named for Eagle Point schools

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Eagle Point School District 9 announced two new principals for the coming school year, including one set to replace the incoming leader of Medford’s up and coming Oakdale Middle School.

Jennifer Patterson-Durham will take the helm of Hillside Elementary School, and Jennifer Sweeney will lead White Mountain Middle School, the district announced in a news release.

Sweeney will take the place of Karina Chavez Rizo, who will depart at the end of the school year to prepare Oakdale Middle School for opening its doors in the fall of 2023.


Sweeney graduated from North Valley High School in Grants Pass. She completed her bachelor's and master's degrees at Southern Oregon University. Sweeney also has post-graduate degrees from the University of Oregon.

Having made a career in junior high schools, Sweeney “loves being part” of them, “helping adolescents learn and figure out who they are and how they want to be part of the community,” the news release said.


A Southern California transplant, Patterson-Durham moved to the valley in 2003 with her family. She has grandparents in Eagle Point. Patterson-Durham will go to Hillside with 13 years in education under her belt.

“With a visionary leadership style and a focus on collaboration, relationship-building, and ensuring quality instruction, she endeavors to provide an extraordinary school experience for all students and families,” the district stated in the release.