Elementary Groundbreaking Ceremony for ISD 318
Community members in Grand Rapids gathered at the school district’s east elementary site for the Elementary Construction Groundbreaking ceremony earlier today.
ISD 318 superintendent Joni Olson spoke about the school district’s historic moment.
“It is not often that a community, educators or students are participants in creating new elementary schools for students and able to participate in the design of those spaces,” Olson said.
The referendum was passed on April 10, 2018. Pat Medure, ISD 318 school board chair, said the new elementary school project has been community driven from the start.
“I think we got a better end product going forward because the community spoke [on] what they wanted to see and how they wanted to see it happen, and this is where we are at today,” Medure said.
The schools as of now are labeled East and West and will both be identical in style. The East school will be located near the sports complex and the West site will be west of the hospital of Golf Course Road. The process of the school design included input from district staff, parents, community members, administrators and teachers.
“Opportunities for students to gain access to things such as beautiful new media center and computers in the lab,” Olson said.” Hands-on lab with opportunities for students, STEM experiences, so we’re really pleased with the opportunities that will be available for our students and for the spaces that will be created.”
Olson said the new elementary schools will be an economic drive for the community.
“So many of the bids went to local construction companies and area agencies,” Olson said. “So we are so pleased that many individuals that were constructions and related fields will be able to work close to home and in many cases will be constructing schools that there children and grandchildren will be attending.”
Medure said the new schools will help with the school district’s space shortage. They hope that with these new schools they can reduce classroom sizes.
Construction on the East site elementary school will begin next week and the West site will follow. The elementary schools are expected to be complete by August 2021.