HIGH POINT, N.C., Sept. 13, 2012 – High Point University held a grand opening for the new LEED-Certified School of Education with a ceremony, tours of the state-of-the-art facility and demonstrations in the classrooms. Special guest hosts – students from Oakview Elementary School in High Point – even led guests of the event through elementary education classrooms.
The 31,000-square-foot School of Education houses the education and psychology departments in technologically advanced classrooms, computer labs and offices. It features high-tech educational equipment, such as smart boards, a children’s book library, math and science touch screen games, a methods lab designed to look and feel like a real elementary school classroom, a Mac lab and psychology research booths.
The building is also setting an example for modern-day energy conservation with things like floor to ceiling windows for natural lighting and light sensors in the rooms. LEED certification is a rating system for “green” buildings developed by the Green Building Environmental Council of the United States (USGBC) and provides certain environmental standards for construction. Water usage is cut by 30 percent inside the building and by 50 percent in its irrigation system, while energy usage is decreased by 24 percent.
“Many people have asked me what this building means to me,” said Dr. Mariann Tillery, dean of the School of Education, who spoke at the grand opening of the new facility to a crowd of community members. “The most significant thing that it represents to me is High Point University’s commitment to the value of teachers, the value of their work and the value of children in our community.”
Leni Fragakis, who graduated from HPU in May with a degree in elementary education, is now pursuing her master’s degree in education at the university. She spoke of her excitement for the new facility at the grand opening. “We knew that this building would be a sanctuary for collaboration and a sanctuary for every educator’s dream,” said Fragakis, who also began her career as a first grade teacher’s assistant at Arts-Based Elementary School in Winston-Salem this fall. “The technological experience that this building offers gives us the ability to be at the top of our field and equipped to effectively lead our students to become 21st century learners.”
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