King Low Heywood Thomas kicked off the school year with the opening of its newly renovated Upper School.
“We have renovated the building to provide an academic center which includes workspace, and traditional library space, a variety of information services, really everything that a top tier independent school or small college would provide for their students,” says Head of School Tom Main.
Main says the project took several years of planning and construction to complete. The start of school last week was the first time many of King’s students saw the new space.
“It was wow, the building was so big so new,” says student Carl Jean-Pieire.
“I was mind blown,” says student Paige Deschapelles.
“What it does for our school is provide a central space where kids and teachers can congregate to work, to collaborate, to support one another, to socialize if they need to,” says Main.
“Before we had limited space; we had space to work but now it really opened it up for us to study, to work with our friends, to meet with teachers, so we appreciate that,” says Jean-Pieire.
“Last time there wasn’t really anything; we didn’t really have a library, we didn’t really have anywhere to sit down and do our homework, we had to sit on the floor in the corners of the classrooms,” says Deschapelles.
Main says it cost about $8 million to renovate the upper school.
He says King did a lot of fundraising to finance the project and several other improvement projects around the campus.
“We’ve just finished a very successful campaign, raised almost 18.5 million dollars,” says Main. “And that campaign supplied the majority of the funding for this project, the funding for the Performing Arts Center that’s across the way, and also provided the funding for the turf field that’s on the south end of campus as you enter the campus. So it was a multi-year, multi-pronged campaign.”
King is not done yet. Faculty say more renovations are on the way.
“The next phase we will be updating the facade of the upper school, building a new lecture hall, building a new cardio center, and updating the art classrooms,” says Ben Hoke, Director of Institutional Advancement.