Central Kitsap School District is scheduled to break ground in May on the long-awaited replacement building for Jackson Park Elementary School.
The new building, anchored by a gabled entry and filled with natural light, will provide a warm welcome for the more than 500 Jackson Park students, a majority of whom are members of highly mobile military families.
The building will be completed in the summer of 2014 and ready for students and staff that fall. Site work will continue into 2015.
“I believe this new building is going to have a really powerful impact on students, staff and families,” said Principal Tess McCartan. “Environment plays a big part of how we are feeling and the sense of belonging we create for students and staff and families will be intensified by this beautiful new building. This in turn will have a dramatic impact on student learning and achievement.”
The new Jackson Park is made possible by CKSD voters, who in February 2011 approved a Capital Projects Levy amounting to $58 million.
As the largest project in the levy package, the new Jackson Park will cost approximately $27 million.
The new Jackson Park will be a vast improvement over the old building, which has reached the end of its useful life. Staff and students currently cannot drink the water in the building, and the building itself has many physical inadequacies.
The new Jackson Park is a two-story building with four wings, comprising 60,836 square feet. Each of the wings will contain six classrooms with shared central learning areas.
The first floor will house the multi-purpose room and gym area, and the second floor will house the library, according to Robin Shoemaker, CKSD’s capital projects manager. Offices for school administrators will be located on both floors. Shoemaker said the new building will have ample daylight for optimal learning, as well as many other features to meet or exceed the state recommendations for energy-efficient, high-performance buildings.
Learning Specialist Kim Backlund is especially excited about the new design.
“The new compact two-story building layout will increase safety and improve traffic flow inside the building and on school grounds,” she said.
McCartan said she envisions the new Jackson Park becoming a hub for the community.
“I think the new building will more accurately mirror the dynamic culture we have at Jackson Park and increase the amount of time we spend at the school,” she said. “I envision increased afterschool activities and more community use of the building. It is going to be such a positive foundation for the neighborhood and its impact is going to be deep and profound.”