Beautiful. Absolutely beautiful. If kids ever go back to school, they might like the building and facilities.
But remember that they will put the same teachers in there who are churning out results where 51.2% of the high schoolers are less than proficient in Language Arts and 55.2% of the kids are less than proficient in Math. In other words, less than half of the kids in this school are proficient at either math or English language arts. But hey… the facilities are cool. I’m sure that will help.
VERONA — A cathedral-height atrium will bathe students in sunlight as they eat lunch, small conference rooms attached to classrooms and the large “social stairs” are designed to promote collaboration, and floor-to-ceiling windows in the library pull a view of the rolling countryside inside the new $150 million Verona High School.
After two years of construction — and more years of preparation and anticipation — the project to transform farm fields on the edge of the growing city into a modern high school is complete.
The 592,000-square-foot building occupies a seven-acre footprint on a 162-acre parcel just southeast of where Highway 18-151, West Verona Road and Epic Lane meet. Parking lots and new athletic facilities, such as turf football and soccer fields, baseball and softball diamonds, and tennis courts, surround the building.
Perhaps the most striking space in the school runs the length of two football fields through the center of the building.
A large atrium features three-story-high ceilings lined with windows at the top. Throughout the ground floor and a second-floor balcony of the atrium, restaurant-style booths, high-top tables and conventional dining tables offer spots for 1,000 students to eat at one time, and nine lunch lines will provide a variety of food options. Three “bridges” on the upper floors divide up the expansive space.
The space acts as the backbone of the school as most instructional spaces ring the atrium.
Classrooms for core subjects like English, math and science line the hallways of the second and third floors around the atrium. Some have windows looking outside, and others provide views looking down into the atrium.
In the classrooms, there are no rows of stale wooden desks. Instead, each room has brightly colored seating of three styles — regular chairs, barstool-height chairs and “comfy furniture,” such as sofas — to accommodate student preference, Hammen said.