Indian Creek’s youngest students will have larger classrooms, and teachers and administers will have new meeting and office spaces once a new wing is constructed at the intermediate school.
United School Corp. leaders have been making plans since spring to replace Indian Creek Elementary School with a new wing at the intermediate school. The school board approved the project last year, and a majority of residents supported the project after it was challenged with a petition race during the summer.
School officials began finalizing architectural plans after the signatures from the race were verified, and the school district expects to select a contractor for the project this month, Superintendent Tim Edsell said.
Edsell said he hopes construction can begin in March, though that will depend largely on how cold it is and the amount of snow we get this winter.
“We probably won’t see any
dirt moved until toward the end of winter,” he said. “Because it’s probably going to be a normal, Indiana winter.”
Ideally, the 53,628-square-foot wing will be complete by the spring of 2016 and ready for students by the start of the 2016-17 school year, Edsell said.
Indian Creek Elementary has about 380 kindergarten through second-grade students, and the new wing will have six classrooms for each grade; nine other classrooms for prekindergarten, a media center, music, art and other classes; and a gym.
The wing will be smaller than the existing elementary school, but classrooms will be larger. Edsell said the existing elementary school classrooms are about 884 square feet, while those in the new wing will be about 900 square feet.
Teachers, administrators and staff will have better Internet access at the new building, since old equipment at Indian Creek Elementary School currently causes spotty service, Edsell said.
Officials hope the upgrades could lead more local families to consider sending their kids to Nineveh-Hensley-Jackson, Edsell said.
“We think that would be an advantage to having this new elementary building, having new, state-of-the-art classrooms and equipment that hopefully (will) improve instruction and learning,” he said.
The cost of the project is expected to be less than $10 million, but officials won’t know the final price until after a contractor is selected, Edsell said.
School districts don’t have
to ask voters to approve elementary school projects that cost less than $10 million, though over the summer 100 Indian Creek residents signed a petition challenging the project.
That challenge kicked off a
30-day race, during which each side had to collect signatures for or against the proposed project.
Most Johnson and Morgan County residents in the school district who signed were in favor of the new building. Supporters of the project gathered 1,605 signatures, while opponents gathered 90 signatures, Edsell said.
“We obviously won, very convincingly,” he said.
School officials haven’t decided what will happen with Indian Creek Elementary after students move into the new wing, and Edsell said he is open to any ideas about how to use the building once it’s empty.
“We would solicit any opinions and garner ideas about what could be done with that building,” he said.
Here are the details about the new wing coming to Indian Creek Intermediate School:
Who will use it: Kindergarten through second-graders
How large it will be: About 53,600 square feet
Number of classrooms: 27
Classroom breakdown: A total of 18 classrooms for kindergarten, first and second grades. The remaining classrooms will be for music, art, a media center and other classes.
Expected completion date: Spring 2016
When students will move: Likely by the start of the 2016-2017 school year