ELLSWORTH, MICHIGAN – On Saturday, November 11 Ellsworth Community School held a ribbon cutting and open house to celebrate the substantial completion of construction projects related to a bond passed in November of 2015. The roughly $2.7-millon project involved the construction of a new bus loop and gym at the elementary school, two new classrooms and extensive remodeling of the middle/high school building, drainage and site work improvements between the buildings, and new infrastructure such as electrical service and HVAC.
Regarding the ribbon cutting and open house, ECS Superintendent, Aaron Gaffney indicated that it marked the completion of a long process. “This day represent the culmination of three years of work. We’re so excited to unveil these improvements to the Ellsworth community and very thankful for their continued support of the school and our students.”
Outside of the new additions, the most visible and dramatic changes to the buildings can be seen in the student commons space in the middle/high school building. “By eliminating a classroom and infilling a courtyard, Kingscott Architects were able to create a dramatic new space for students that includes new lockers, benches, and both an upper and lower commons area,” said Gaffney. “Connecting the upper and lower spaces is a new ADA ramp that was vital for creating a barrier free access path between the north and south side of the building.”
While students have been able to enjoy and appreciate these new spaces since September, Saturday marked the official opening to the public, which was well attended by many parents, community members, and alumni. “We are so excited to have reached this monumental moment in the life of our district,” said ECS School Board Treasurer, Pastor Chris Wallace. “This ceremony reminds us that our mission to offer big school opportunities through small school relationships has been enhanced and deepened through the provision of better spaces.”
The projects that are nearing 100% completion mark a continued effort by ECS to provide the best educational environment possible for students, a tradition that dates back many generations. “I am an Ellsworth Community School graduate, as were my parents and my daughter. Now as a board member, I am very excited about the changes made to our schools,” said ECS School Board Secretary, Susie Gardner. “Providing an excellent education for our students is our first priority. With the improvements made to the buildings and grounds, this can now be achieved in a welcoming, colorful and safe environment.”
Throughout the course of the remaining school year and into the summer of 2018, ECS will be continuing to make updates and improvements to the district’s buildings and grounds. “Over Christmas break we will be enlarging our middle/high school cafeteria and making improvements to the library, as well as replacing the doors and wall in our high school gym entrance,” indicated Gaffney. “Then this coming spring/summer we will be renovating the elementary baseball field as well as exploring options for making changes to both the elementary and middle/high school parking lots.”
For more information on this program or Ellsworth Community School in general please contact Superintendent, Aaron Gaffney at 231.588.2544 or firstname.lastname@example.org