Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) Board Member Julie Korenstein joined community members to break ground on Valley Region High School #9 today.
Valley Region High School #9, located on land at Fulton College Preparatory School, is scheduled to open in time for the 2011-2012 school year. The new school will provide overcrowding relief to Van Nuys High School, which currently operates with a student population nearly double the state average for high schools. With this new school, Van Nuys High School will be able to continue to operate on a traditional, two-semester calendar.
"Originally Robert Fulton College Preparatory was a 6th through 8th grade middle school. Currently it is a 6th through 12th grade span school. We are building additional facilities on the campus to allow for a comprehensive high school experience for the students," Board Member Korenstein said. "Our students deserve to attend a school with the best possible learning environment."
"It's inspiring even in these hard economic times that we haven't forgotten about the importance of education for our children," Los Angeles City Councilman Tony C‡rdenas said. "I'm proud to see construction begin on Valley Region High School #9 to help give much needed overcrowding relief to the area."
"This new high school will include performing arts classes and ROTC because these are examples of what engage our high school students in the school community," Local District 2 Superintendent Alma Pe–a-Sanchez said. "There is nothing more special than a new school and no greater gift to the community than the gift of education."
The 810-seat high school will consist of two small learning communities that include classrooms, science labs and administration. School facilities shared by the small learning communities include: performing arts classrooms, a library, a gymnasium, food service and lunch shelter, central administration, playfields and surface parking.
"Today we are breaking ground on a project that will ensure the students of Van Nuys have the educational facilities they deserve," LAUSD Acting Deputy Chief Facilities Executive for New Construction Fred Smith said. "This new school is part of a building program that is creating $1.2 billion in wages and $1.2 billion in local and state taxes and 239,000 jobs, of which 68 percent are performed by local workers."
LAUSD's $20.1 Billion New School Construction and Modernization Program (Measures BB, K, R and Y) is designed to eliminate involuntary busing and year round calendars by providing safe and healthy neighborhood schools on a traditional, two semester calendar for every student. To date, LAUSD has completed 76 new schools, 59 additions, 80,000 new K-12 classroom seats and 18,000 modernization and repair projects at schools throughout the District. For more information, please visit www.laschools.org <http://www.laschools.org/> .