New campus reflects community support | Editorial

We are jumping up and down with excitement.

The Orcas School renovation will be done by the end of August, and after we got a sneak peak last week, we can tell you that it is positively stunning.

The Islands’ Sounder supported both larger scale bonds that were rejected by voters, so when the $11.9 million project was finally approved by the Orcas community, we were thrilled. And now the hard work of the school, staff, architects and construction crews has resulted in a phenomenal space designed specifically for our students.

Every inch of the renovated middle school, library and cafeteria remodel had thought and care put into it. Natural light and high ceilings are a trademark of the rooms. The carpet was installed in squares so that if some of them need to come out in the future, the whole room doesn’t have to be torn apart. Classrooms have interactive white boards. The lighting system is online and can be remotely accessed. When possible, appliances from the old structures  were kept. The band room was designed with the help of an acoustical engineer. The commercial kitchen can be used by cafeteria staff and the culinary arts program. By demolishing the band building, the student drop off area has been lengthened by 50 feet. The courtyard is bigger and helps connect the entire campus. The library and the cafeteria can be rented for community uses.

The list goes on and on.

During our tour, there was still landscaping and finishing touches to be done and we were still astounded at the new buildings. To see them clean and shiny and bustling with kids will be wonderful.

Thank you to the school board for the countless hours they put into the bond proposals and site plans. Their vision and determination has paid off in a huge way and we couldn’t be more proud.

We now have an exceptional campus for exceptional students.

The community is invited to an unveiling on Saturday, Aug. 29. There will be building tours at 4 p.m. followed by a dedication ceremony at 4:30 p.m. and a BBQ at 5 p.m.