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Falcons Break Ground to Soar Higher

Noah Gray, 16, FHS eleventh-grader, speaks at the Oct. 27 grounbreaking. Students, staff, families, and community members gathered Oct. 27 at Falcon High School to break ground on a new academic wing.

The addition to the school is part of the Building Our Future Community plan, approved by voters as ballot issue 3B in November 2016.

“I moved to Falcon right before the start of my sophomore year,” said Noah Gray, 16, eleventh-grader. “I vividly remember being amazed when I was shown classes in the health academy.”

“Prior to Falcon, I had never seen a high school that allowed me to focus a large portion of my education on learning about different aspects of the field I knew would employ me someday.”

“I attribute my confidence to the fact that I attend a high school that is continuously advancing in the learning opportunities of students and that offers a program that allows me to attain first-hand experience of what the health field has to offer,” said Noah.

The new 22,120 sq. ft. wing, being constructed on the northern end of the school, will house several programs, including the Academy of Health Sciences. Eight new learning spaces, including a career and technical education shop, a print shop and computer labs will complete the space.

“Career and technical education is more than a buzz word,” said JaDee Harsma, DLR Group project architect and design leader for the addition. “It’s the pathway to prepare students for college and career.”

“We fully embrace this idea,” said Harsma. “We design spaces that enable this concept of applied learning and allow for new programs and coursework in the future.”

“I would like to thank the parents of our district for the special trust you give our faculty and staff every day to educate your children,” said John Graham, District 49 Board of Education vice-president. “I thank the community for entrusting us with your hard earned dollars to continue to expand and improve our schools.”

FHS students break ground Oct. 27.  FHS students break ground Oct. 27.  FHS staff members break ground Oct. 27.

“Now more than ever, schools are becoming a central component of our communities,” said Graham. “Use every opportunity to care for each other, to learn from each other, and build your community into what you would like it to be.”

Groups of students, staff and community members shoveled dirt to kick the project off after the comments. The event concluded with refreshments supplied by the DLR Group and GE Johnson Company, the general contractor for the project.

The addition is scheduled to be complete for the start of the 2018-2019 school year.

Matt Meister