Student Media of Pittsburg High School

Pitt Media

Student Media of Pittsburg High School

Pitt Media

Student Media of Pittsburg High School

Pitt Media

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Adding a modern touch

Renovations to the middle school provides new learning spaces
Adding+a+modern+touch
Photo by: Sidney Lira

Recently, Pittsburg Community Middle School had a few updates made to the front part of the building. 

Renovations started in July of 2022 and finished in July of 2023, taking only one year which was the originally projected time frame. 

“We took [the proposal] out to the public,” Richard Proffitt, Pittsburg school district’s superintendent, said. “It was very important that we didn’t raise taxes to do this. It was a huge deal.”

Bond issues had called to tear down the part of the building prior to its renovation due to questions as to whether the building was safe or not. 

“[Tearing the building down] didn’t resonate with the community very well,” Proffitt said. “A lot of people wanted to keep this building.” 

After a structural engineer came and decided that the all concrete building would be sound enough to renovate, an architect then came in to create ideas for the new space.

“[The architect] worked with our staff and some of our faculty and administration to listen to what the needs actually were,” Proffitt said. “Not only present needs but also future needs and renovate [the space] in such a way that we could take on additional growth and use it currently in a functional way.”  

Many students and teachers have had the opportunity to use this space. Baylee Claypool, multimedia communications teacher, has been one of the many to see the area change from the old building to the new renovated space.

“My favorite renovated space will have to be the auditorium,” Claypool said. “I cannot wait to watch our first play here.”

The new space is going to be used for a couple things: overflow classrooms and collaborative spaces.  

“The kids have benefited a lot from this renovation to the building,” Claypool said. “They have new learning spaces to learn in, a new area for our wrestling team to practice and host meets, the auditorium to practice for student plays, and more.”

In anticipation for growing numbers, pillars have been added in a way that walls can be put up to create additional classrooms. 

“The renovated space has already had an impact on the school,” Claypool said. “We have all these new areas of the school we can utilize and students can learn.”

A new, modern look was added to the building through the reconstruction and the carefully chosen decor. 

“The new spaces for students to collaborate with one another are clean, spacious, comfy, and perfect for learning,” Claypool said.

Construction has been ongoing in the school district since 2017 as the school board passes new bond projects to better Pittsburg Community schools. 

“I’d like to take a breather from construction,” Proffitt said. “We are going to have to focus on some facilities because we do have a growing student population and it doesn’t really look like it’s going to slow down any time soon.”

One facility that many people are concerned about is the high school. 

“We are at what I would call functional capacity at the high school right now,” Proffitt said. 

In the six years that Proffitt has been a part of the school district, the high school students numbers have increased by more than 200, exceeding 1000 students. 

“We’re busting at the seams,” Proffitt said. “So we are certainly going to have to take a look at that. It’s part of the overall plan but it’s more complex than just saying ‘Let’s fix this.’”

In order to accommodate for the increase of students, some classes have moved outside of the school.

“We think that’s an integral part of the educational process,” Proffitt said. “We may have some more students that are outside of the school which would not necessarily lead to an additional classroom.” 

On September 1, the middle school held a ribbon cutting ceremony that was open to select people. During this time, members of the community could visit the school and explore the newly renovated area. 

Two students who are a part of the student council at PCMS were chosen to help cut the ribbon at this ceremony. One of these students was 8th grader Lauryn Keller. 

“I was really nervous because a lot of people were watching me,” Keller said. “This opportunity means a lot to me because I’m a part of a lot of things but I’m usually behind the scenes and I’ve been recognized. It feels pretty good.”

According to Keller, the space will be beneficial for the students in many ways. 

“I’ve never seen anything like this in any of the other schools,” Keller said. “This would be a place we could come to for some quietness or to study. It’s a new spot for us to learn.”

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About the Contributors
Heather Mowdy, Print Editor
This is Heather's third year on staff and second year as print editor. She is involved in school volleyball and softball, travel softball, NHS, and HOSA. In her free time, she loves to spend time with her family and friends.
Sidney Lira, Photographer
This is Sidney Lira, she is the Social Media Manager and a senior. Sidney is a photographer for yearbook and a graphic designer, in her free time she does freelance photography and is in Encore.
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