Phenix City Schools will conduct a ribbon-cutting ceremony next week for the grand opening of the expansion facility at Central High School.
Tuesday’s event is scheduled to start at 5:30 p.m.
The expansion facility is located behind the Central Freshman Academy gym and the softball field. After the ceremony, folks may tour the facility.
Park in front of the Central Freshman Academy and enter via the new driveway next to the gym.
The $3,296,335 project has produced a 34,000-square-foot building. It comprises two 70-seat classrooms (for health, physical education and driver’s education, as well as dedicated spaces for special-education testing and after-school tutoring); an indoor artificial turf practice field, strength and conditioning stations, two batting cages, meeting rooms, locker rooms, a training room and storage. Furniture, fixtures and equipment could cost as much as $700,000 extra, superintendent Randy Wilkes has said.
The expansion facility “is an answer to Phenix City Schools’ rapid student population is growth,” Wilkes said in a news release Thursday.
With an average of 628 students per grade level in kindergarten through fourth grade, Wilkes said, more than 2,400 students are expected to be coming through Central Freshman Academy and Central High School in the next decade – despite CFA and CHS originally being designed to accommodate less than 2,000 students combined.
The athletic facilities also have been overwhelmed, Wilkes noted, originally designed to accommodate less than 600 students but now serving more than 1,000 students.
More space will be available for not only various teams to practice, as well as marching band and JROTC, but the expansion facility also will provide a safe environment for students during inclement weather, Wilkes said.
“At close of the 2015-2016 school year, over $13 million in scholarships had been awarded to Central High School seniors,” Wilkes said. “CHS had multiple academic and athletic teams compete on the regional, state, and even national levels. Phenix City Schools expects to build on these achievements with the ample space and amenities provided in the expansion to let students reach their full potential.”