NEWTOWN, Connecticut – In just a few weeks, the new Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown will welcome students for the very first time.
Building the school on the same site has taken years, and school officials are finally ready to give media a look, according to WFSB.
Newtown’s first selectwoman says their goal for the new school was to create a place of community and learning, as well as a place to honor those lost.
“Sandy Hook will have a quiet, respectful, and appropriate opening as teachers and students return to the new school year,” Superintendent Joseph Erardi said. “The transition to the new school needs to be as seamless as possible for the children. That is why we are setting up this day; and therefore, asking everyone to give us the space we need to allow high quality teaching and learning when we return for our first day of school.”
The former Sandy Hook School was demolished following the shooting in December of 2012.
Construction began in fall of 2014, and the design team has been posting updates throughout the process. They held forums with town officials, community groups, neighbors, parents, teachers, and school administrators to come up with the plan.
The redesign is meant to focus on the natural features of the school site, while addressing security, vehicle access, and other concerns.
More than 500 students from pre-k through fourth grade are expected to attend the school, distributed between three classroom wings – separated by three courtyards.
Many of the victim’s families say the design team has been great about keeping them updated on the progress of the new school and asking for their input, but it’s still too tough for them to get involved.
The emotions surrounding the site of the former school are just still to much for them to bear.
Students are scheduled to start there at the end of August.