At the Dec. 10 Hamilton Southeastern School Board meeting, early concepts for senior academies at Fishers High School and Hamilton Southeastern High School were laid out and discussed.
Residents and students filed into HSE’s auditorium for the presentation.
HSE Supt. Dr. Brian Smith said the freshman center at HSE will close in 2015 – emphasizing the need for more space.
He said building a completely new high school was considered, but came with a price tag of $120 million, which was about $30 million more than the cost of the senior academies.
Construction for the academies will go before Fishers residents in a referendum next year.
The initial cost for the academies is $90 million. However, Smith said HSE required major repairs for equipment long past life expectancy, plus FHS has some needed repairs. He asked for taxpayer feedback on increasing the bill by $5 million to take care of the work.
Depending on what route the school board takes, it could mean one of two increases to the tax rate.
What exactly are taxpayers buying?
The two senior academies include soft space for communal studying, a living learning center, a cafeteria with old school and new style of seating, a different take on classrooms called “learning hubs,” new entranceways and more. In addition, each school is planned to receive a new area for large group instruction and physical education space expansion, which includes new locker rooms.
Trung Lee of Cannon Design, who has worked with the school district on the project, broke down the new learning hubs.
He said the designers are advocating for furniture that can be removed, which allows for building smaller classrooms.
The senior academies will feature collegiate pathways as well as typical senior courses.
The academies, if the taxpayers vote for them, will open in 2015.
For more information, visit www.hse.k12.in.us.