Canby High School teachers and administrators arrived Friday morning to a real shock: The campus was covered in signs, flyers and banners declaring that the high school was for sale.
The outgoing senior class has claimed responsibility, saying they are looking for the highest bidder.
“The Class of 2021 is putting the high school up for sale, because, I mean, if we can’t be at the high school, nobody should be able to be at the high school,” explained senior and Associated Student Body President Sarah Patton. “Anyone can make an offer if they want.”
The idea came out of a massive Class of 2021 group chat that outgoing seniors have used to communicate with each other, particularly during the pandemic.
“Someone said they were really upset to think about any other classes being in the high school but us,” Patton recalled. “So, we decided, ‘You know what? It’s just time for it to stop being a high school.’ So, we’re selling it.”
Advertisements of the sale included a 20-foot banner over the main entrance, along with flyers throughout the halls with a QR code directing users to an online portal where they can enter their bids. Some signs offered a phone number: Principal Greg Dinse’s direct line.
Anyone can make a bid — except current freshmen.
“The Class of 2024 isn’t even allowed to talk to us,” explained senior Kaden Boyd. “Look — if we’re not going to be allowed to have [the high school], they definitely don’t get to have it.”
“When the Class of 2024 comes up to me, I just punt-kick them,” said senior Ainsley “The Freshman Crusher” Beck. “I don’t play football until that moment, and then they get it.”
So, who is the intended market for Canby High?
“I heard Mr. Monen,” said Boyd, referring to longtime CTE and building instructor Darren Monen. “I heard he was investing in it. He’s got the money. He’s got the pocket for it.”
“He said, ‘Harefest could be, just, next level if we had a high school-like structure for it,'” recalled Beck. (Monen’s wife, Joan, is co-founder and organizer of the popular annual tribute band festival.)
Canby Cross Country and Track Coach Tom Millbrooke may also be interested, Boyd said. “Mr. Millbrooke said he’d put in an entire cross country track, you know? Let them run the halls for a workout.”
I dunno, Principal Dinse. Seems pretty legit… https://t.co/my5NZFDshw
— The Canby Current (@CanbyCurrent) June 4, 2021
Senior Jonathan Thomas said he found out about the sale earlier Thursday.
“It’s sad to see the place go,” he said, standing in the school parking lot. “There’s the Fine Arts Center there. Who knows what that will be converted into? Probably an Arby’s.”
Thomas said he believes the property will draw top dollar.
“At least $1,000, I would think,” he said. “That’s a lot of money. It has a decent amount of square footage, you know? I think, at least 2,000 square feet in the whole building.”
What would Thomas do with the high school — if he had the money?
“Oh, man. If I had a whole thousand dollars? Who knows what I would do?” He paused. “Probably a hockey rink. I think the [Applied Technology Center] would serve as a really good hockey rink. They have good air conditioning in there.”
Seniors said they will also consider non-cash offers.
“No offer is too low,” Beck said. “We are so desperate to keep the other classes out of it that we are very negotiable.”
“We’re taking offers of any size,” Patton added. “Like, if you have a really prized possession or, you know, a pig. We would trade the high school for approximately five pigs.”
“Six if they’re a little smaller,” Boyd clarified. “And we can do a straight trade. Like, I would take [Pizza] Schmizza if you want to take CHS.”
A few items of sentimental value will not be included in the sale, the Class of 2021 confirmed, including the 27,000-pound Senior Rock dedicated to last year’s senior class and all graduating seniors.
“We’ll be taking that with us,” Patton said.
Future accommodations for the high school’s approximately 1,500 students are also unclear. Canby School District officials could not be reached for comment.
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