Newly Renovated Classrooms in the Social Studies Wing Welcome Students Back to School



The social studies wing is now home to newly updated classrooms with a fresh, modern look. Photo by Trisha Yu.

After last year’s bond for district improvements was passed, the high school can look forward to many improvements, both inside and outside the learning environment. While some of the renovations to the outdoor facilities, like in the courtyard and the sports field, are still in progress, many students and teachers have already noticed the changes to some of the classrooms in the history wing.

Teachers in these rooms already have a lot of positive things to say about the renovated classrooms. Not only is there more shelf and cabinet space— the whole atmosphere of the room has been changed.

“The brightness and clean look was my first impression,” says Mr. Carlos Fidalgo, a history teacher. “The black and gold scheme is a welcome look. The old classroom was just old, old floor tiles and tired wall paint. This is a much more fresh look.”

The new floors are the best part, according to economics teacher Mr. Andrew Cohen. 

“I think my favorite part of the classroom is the new floor,” he said. “It gives it a professional and modern look. My last floor had a very strange green and gray linoleum design.”

The rooms themselves are not all that has been updated. Classrooms are now furnished with triangular desks, rather than the traditional rectangular desks, which can be bulky and difficult to move. The new shape allows students to move their desks into different formations quickly, allowing for easier coordination for group work.

“I was pleasantly surprised by the desks, instead of [large] tables that I saw in the original drawing of the renovation,” said Mr. Cohen. 

Mr. Fidalgo agreed. 

“The desks seem more effective and the seats are more comfortable than the attached seats to the old desks,” he said. “They can also be manipulated around the room a whole lot easier.”

School renovations represent more than just a change in the outward appearance in facilities. Being able to interact and learn in an environment that is up-to-date also reflects the next generation’s ability to thrive in the modern world. 

According to Mr. Cohen, it makes more sense for a school to promote optimism about the future and reflect the appearance of entering into the “real world.”

“I think all students and staff deserve modern and clean facilities,” he said. “It is hard to be positive about your education if you are in a building that is too hot, has leaks, or looks outdated. If we want to prepare students for the 21st-century, the facilities should reflect that.”

The few updated classrooms are only the first step in a long process of using the full capabilities of the bond. Considering the need for a fresh, new learning environment, teachers and future students can expect that other classrooms will follow suit in the new style.

“As I understand it, other classrooms will progressively be renovated,” said Mr. Fidalgo. “I think the building will look a lot different by the time the four years of the recent bond expenditures are completed.”