Superintendent’s NEWSLETTER A Publication from the Office of Superintendent Robert Collins February 5, 2010 Left: Science Chair Franz Ruiz, Trustee Dr. The new science facility at El Cajon Valley High School and District staff, students and community Gary Woods, Mayor Pro Tem of El Cajon Bill School ushers in a new era for science education in leaders cut the ribbon and open the new science Wells, and Principal Paul Dautremont GUHSD building GROSSMONT UNION HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT OPENS NEW STATE-OF-THE-ART SCIENCE BUILDING AT EL CAJON VALLEY HIGH SCHOOL First of eight East County campuses to get Prop H-funded science buildings in 2010 On Monday, February 1, 2010, the Grossmont Union High School District (GUHSD) opened the first in a series of new state- of-the-art science buildings completed as part of the $274 million Proposition H bond measure passed by East County voters in 2004. The District marked the occasion with a building dedication ceremony as students returned for the start of the second semester at El Cajon Valley High School (ECVHS). At the event, Board Member Dr. Gary Woods, Superintendent Robert Collins, Principal Paul Dautremont, and Science Department Chair Franz Ruiz were joined by two special guests – Sandra Slivka, Ph.D., director of the Southern California Biotechnology Center at Miramar College, and Kristie Grover, director of the BIOCOM Institute. A certificate of recognition for the event was also presented from the offices of Assemblyman Joel Anderson and State Senator Dennis Hollingsworth. Following a ceremonial ribbon-cutting, students, staff and guests were invited to enter the building for the first time. Biotechnology teacher Glenn Melero then prepared a fun visual experiment, making “elephant toothpaste,” for all to enjoy. Phase 3A of the bond program, which includes the construction of eight new science buildings on campuses throughout the District, began in 2009. The facility at El Cajon Valley High School is the first to be completed. All of the science buildings, with the exception of Granite Hills High School’s, will open by April 2010, with the final building completion in September. The new structure provides eight new science classrooms for teaching college preparatory chemistry, biology and physics, as well as teacher offices and preparation spaces. The space also includes a biotech classroom for the District’s Career Technical Education (CTE) program, which prepares students for high-demand career paths. The new 14,000-square-foot building, with a construction value of $4.5 million, features state-of-the-art design and technology with wireless computing, built-in projection, and modern student safety and communications equipment. Science classes had previously been conducted in one of the original campus buildings constructed in 1956, as well as scattered among other campus buildings. With the construction of the first new classroom building in decades, the entire science department will be located in one place. “The entire ECVHS community is very excited about the opening of our new science facility and the unique classes that will now be offered,” said Principal Dautremont. “In addition to providing a boost to our overall science program, the new facility enables us to develop a health career and biotechnology pathway that exposes students to real-world applications of science.” Gafcon Inc. is the program manager for the overall GUHSD bond program funded by Proposition H and the subsequent Proposition U, which was passed by voters in November 2008. The ECVHS project team included designer HMC Architects, general contractor Soltek Pacific and construction manager Erickson-Hall. Scott Wilkins was the project manager.
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