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Canyons Celebrates Start Of Work At New High School

Canyons District celebrated the start of construction on a new high school in Draper. 

If you missed the April 27 groundbreaking ceremony, here is the complete video of the historic event:

The school, which will accommodate up to 1,800 students when finished, is being built with the help of a $250 million bond approved by voters in Canyons District. It is the first of 13 projects identified as priorities by the Canyons Board of Education.

The groundbreaking ceremony at the site, 12887 S. 801 East, was historic for the District: It marked the first time Canyons District, which was founded in 2009, broke ground on a new school. The 311,000-square-foot building is expected to be done in time for the 2013-2014 school year.

“For many of us, it’s been a long time coming – too long, in fact,” said Sherril Taylor, Vice President of the Canyons Board of Education, in his remarks to the crowd of nearly 200 people.  “I have no doubt that many of you wondered if this day would actually ever happen. But it’s here, and Canyons District is proud to announce that it is holding true to its promise to build a high school for the families of Draper.

The school’s design aims to improve indoor environmental quality, including the amount of natural light in classrooms and commons areas. The school also will feature state-of-the-art science labs, an expanded cafeteria and kitchen, two-story academic classroom wings, a 120-seat lecture hall and a 1,200-seat auditorium. For athletic teams and physical education classes, the school also will house a 3,300-seat capacity competition gymnasium meeting NCAA standards, two auxiliary gymnasiums to accommodate ninth- through 12th- grade classes and prep teams, a track and artificial turf football field with seating for 3,500 home spectators and 1,200 visiting spectators, eight tennis courts, and a baseball and softball complex. 

“This is an incredibly exciting time, and we’re thrilled to be here today to mark the official start of work on this project,” said Dr. Paul McCarty, the member of the Canyons Board of Education who represents south Sandy and Draper.  “This is a vision we all share, and we thank you all for your support as we construct schools – and build the future.”

The school project has been designed with public input. The first step was to meet with Design Committees of architects, community members, and District and school leaders. Those committees brainstormed building plans that would enhance academic programming. Architects used the feedback from the Design Committee to create draft designs that were presented at various community meetings. The draft designs were then adjusted based on input from faculty, staff, students and patrons.

Construction of the high school will enable a districtwide grade reconfiguration plan. In fall 2013, freshman will begin attending classes at high schools, middle schools will house sixth- through eighth-grade students, and elementary schools will welcome kindergarten- through fifth-grade classes.  

The final design was approved in February by the Board of Education, which chose the Orem-based firm Sandstrom Associates Architecture to spearhead the project’s design. Hogan and Associates Construction, based in Centerville, has been contracted to build the new school, which has not yet been named.

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Lucie Chamberlain

Alta View Elementary

If a movie about super teachers were ever made, Lucie Chamberlain would be a prime candidate for a leading role. Fortunately for her kindergarten students at Alta View Elementary, she already thrives in a supporting role for them. Parents thank her for being a “super teacher.” She is also described as an “amazing colleague.” Whether students need help in the classroom or from home while sick, Lucie goes above and beyond to help them learn, overcome fears, and feel important and cared for. Lucie is the reason a number of kids went from hating school to loving it, according to parents. The way she exudes patience, sweetness, positive energy, and love for her students with special needs melts is appreciated and admired. One parent noted: “Both my kids wish she could be their teacher forever.” Another added:  “She treats every student like their learning and their feelings are her priority.” Super teacher, indeed!

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