South Plaq. High: Students to be on campus in 6-weeksJul 29th, 2013 | By Candace Griffin | Category: news
South Plaquemines High School’s new campus should be ready to receive students within six weeks, said Chris Barker, Project Manager for HOV Services, the construction company overseeing the rebuilding project. “This campus is going to be a real class act,” said Barker. “It’ll certainly be a big change from the current South Plaquemines campus.” The current, temporary high school consists of modular trailers being used as classrooms, so the new campus will certainly be an upgrade in both functionality and looks.
The Isaac Delay
A six-week countdown was announced last year, but then came Isaac. The storm hit at the worst possible time, said Barker, when the roof was only half completed. Months of litigation followed to get the never-used-butnow- rusted equipment replaced instead of refurbished. Most was replaced— kitchen equipment for example; but some things, like cemented-in door frames, were refurbished to such an extent that they are more durable and valuable now then when they were delivered. Of course this came at a higher price tag. The pre-Isaac cost of construction was scheduled to be around $39 million, but the damage accrued tacked on nearly $15 million more. However, the additional costs will be covered by FEMA.
Almost all of the school’s construction has been completed, and is on a tight schedule; furniture is being moved in this week. The one exception is the auditorium. Seating 400, it was only partially paid for with FEMA funds. (FEMA would replace the stage since Buras High had one, but not the audience seating area— a grant covered that). Barker said the auditorium will be a Christmas present. Students should be in their new school full time by the September 9 School Board meeting, but before they actually start school at the new campus, administrators will be giving groups of students guided tours so they can become comfortable with the new campus.
What the new school has to offer
• The building is raised for flood safety, and features a parking lot and bus drop-off area underneath
• A two-story main building with a 600 student capacity, grades 7-12
• A locked entry way, which forces visitors to have permission from the front office before having access to student area
• Columbine Locks and bullet proof glass on all classroom doors— this will allow teachers to lock their classrooms from the inside in case of an emergency.
• Classrooms also include repositionable white boards and smart boards.
• Several high tech science labs, one of which is equipped to dispose of acids
• A library with computer lab, as well as several other computer labs located around the campus
• AT&T fiber-optic internet connection lines and WiFi capabilities
• Two gyms with hardwood flooring—one for basketball, and one auxiliary
• An auditorium that seats 400
• A daycare facility with screened in outdoor play area
• Petrotech lab that will serve as part of the Career Technical Education (CTE) program
• An art room with a kiln
• A band room equipped with Winger sound-proof practice rooms, and an adjoining practice room
• A large cafeteria with new, high quality kitchen equipment and an outdoor eating area
• Blue terrazzo floor inlays that mimic this Mississippi River and its tributaries
• A hand-carved brick mural in the entryway, as well as built in trophy cases
• Flagpole area constructed with materials from Buras High School
• Plenty of natural lighting