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g-man430

CONSTRUCTION THREAD: Greenville County Schools

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I don't know if this applies to people who don't have children attending Riverside but, as a student we were informed that after school if you have a parent you can take a "hard-hat" tour of the new school building. Just passing that on as I'll probably be doing that before Spring Break this week. I don't know the camera policy but I'll sneak some shots with the phone if I have to... ;)

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On Woodruff Rd, the new Beck Middle School looks great! Moving out of Nicholtown is going to be the best thing to happen to this school.

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This seemed like the most logical place to post this. I couldn't find a general education thread for Greenville.

My question: Why does the district lack foresight?

Here's what I know:

This past year Greenville County Schools added 1800 students.

For the future they are projecting an average of 1000 students per year; though as this past year proved, may be conservative. It's roughly the size of a new school.

The District is wrapping up its building campaign of $1Billion. The schools (or some atleast) were designed to be utilized without portables.

Though: Mauldin High, completed several years ago, is over capacity. JL Mann will receive Mauldin students when it opens, putting it at capacity: 1500. Mann is also the school for Verdae, which doesn't have residents yet, but will before long.

That's just two things that irritate me. Building a school too large in the begining is never a bad move. Especially when you're utilizing the land in a way that doesn't allow for expansion. What's up Greenville County?

End Rant. :rolleyes:

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This seemed like the most logical place to post this. I couldn't find a general education thread for Greenville.

My question: Why does the district lack foresight?

Here's what I know:

This past year Greenville County Schools added 1800 students.

For the future they are projecting an average of 1000 students per year; though as this past year proved, may be conservative. It's roughly the size of a new school.

The District is wrapping up its building campaign of $1Billion. The schools (or some atleast) were designed to be utilized without portables.

Though: Mauldin High, completed several years ago, is over capacity. JL Mann will receive Mauldin students when it opens, putting it at capacity: 1500. Mann is also the school for Verdae, which doesn't have residents yet, but will before long.

That's just two things that irritate me. Building a school too large in the begining is never a bad move. Especially when you're utilizing the land in a way that doesn't allow for expansion. What's up Greenville County?

End Rant. :rolleyes:

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The shcool district is already planning its next phase of building construction and sports facility upgrades. There was an article in the Greenville News recently with interesting information regarding the initial growth projection (800 new students) and what has happened since then (about double that number).

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The shcool district is already planning its next phase of building construction and sports facility upgrades. There was an article in the Greenville News recently with interesting information regarding the initial growth projection (800 new students) and what has happened since then (about double that number).

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I personally don't care what they look like. They should be functional. That's it. I would rather spend less money on grandiose exteriors and more money on quality educators on the inside.

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I personally don't care what they look like. They should be functional. That's it. I would rather spend less money on grandiose exteriors and more money on quality educators on the inside.

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^ Great point! :thumbsup:

IMO, a students surroundings (architecture and physical environment) have a great impact on learning. Surroundings can inspire learning. I remember a science class in middle school. Outside our window, was the oldest and largest Ginkgo tree in Alabama. We would have class under that tree several days when studying botany. The beautiful yellow color of the tree in fall.....I can still see those days vividly. While I didn't didn't go into anything remotely related to botany, that single tree did inspire to me dig deeper and learn more about botany.

Imagine my outrage some years back when I returned home to find that tree cut down and a school addition in its place. :(

Architecture, landscaping, art....everything that is the physical environment can inspire people to learn. IMO, local governments around the country have sadly downplayed the value of sensory cues as regards education.

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I was disappointed to watch the new TRHS emerge behind its vast parking lot. Way to encourage walking. Where I went to school, there was no student parking lot; you had to find a spot on the street and walk from there if you wanted to drive your own vehicle. Different scenario, of course, but it could work in Greenville County just the same.

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I was disappointed to watch the new TRHS emerge behind its vast parking lot. Way to encourage walking. Where I went to school, there was no student parking lot; you had to find a spot on the street and walk from there if you wanted to drive your own vehicle. Different scenario, of course, but it could work in Greenville County just the same.

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I didn't say anything about being "grandiose" but I disagree. How a school or any other building is contructed says a lot about what's inside. A building can look warm, inviting and condusive to learning without being flashy or "grandiose". I know they are exceptions but architecture can not always be applied to fashion. I've had to listen for many years from my parents and their contemporaries how Parker High School when way down after a certain chairman of the school district decided the impressive looking front of Parker should be done away with and replaced with a more institutional look. It's quite a shame that the work that went into the original structure was trashed by the school district. You would be amazed at how much pride those alumni had for the "old school" and you can tell it went into the pride of their studies as well.

Of course to be fair about my previous statement Wade Hampton didn't look much better in it's previous incarnation but I do think that the district could have put a little more thought into the look of the building. Architecture can communicate a lot! I'm all for progress but I think the good styles of the past should be respected and honored. What does it communicate to the present generation when we tear down the beauty of the past and replace it with post-modern ugliness? How can you teach things like history and art and keep a straight face? I do respect places like Furman who have preserved their older buildings while making them state of the art on the inside and building new structures to match what works. I love the fact that both Furman and Winthrop ( My wife and I's alma mater's respectively) have the original structures on their campuses. It's subtle but it communicates a lot.

I was also a student at North Greenville College (now university) and I'm proud to say they have basically left the modernist/post modern look of the 70's in favor of a more classical style. It's interesting how much North Greenville has grown since I was their and I'm convinced that the architecture they use now is reflecting a new excellence.

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I agree that architecture is not the end all to influencing people. I also never said bricks and columns were nessisarliy requirred. The thing that disturbs me about these new schools is the overuse of cinder blocks and lack of window. The same holds true with other buildings we have mentioned from City Hall, Poinsett Hwy porno shops, etc. When I drive down the road and see bars that have no windows at all the first thing that pops into my mind is, "What in the world is going on in there?!" Why do the places that are know to society as being places of vices seem to go out of there way to communicate this? I just think it odd that for years and years students have joked about school being a prision and now schools are being built to look like prisions. Seriously take a look at the detention center downtown and some of the newer schools. At least the detention center has a little 3-D paint job on the side.

Also the fact the people can chose to go to a college just magnifies my belief is school choice on the primary level. Parents who chose or maybe and sadly "don't have a choice" children are put in a system where the school district and get by building schools that look like jails and may of the discipline problems that are not as prevalent as they are in the private sector.

People who complain about the power, water, cable and other companies being monopolies seem to have no beef and will even defend the public school system. The architecture is a reflection of the values of what is going on the inside and the values of those who lead.

You talk about luring better teachers but why would "better teachers" be attracted to teaching in a "prison?" The message the prision architecture send is they are breeding "little convicts" inside those walls. My wife taught in the local public schools for six years and at times was afraid for her life and is now very happy teaching private piano and voice lesson to people of all ages (she has taught from ages 5-75) in addition to helping me with web programming and database work in the business we co-own. I also have the unique experience of attending both public and private primary schools (West Gantt Elementary, Hughes Middle, Southside Christian) as well as private and state colleges (North Greenville, Winthrop). I had both good and bad experiences in both types and don't favor one over the other.

I also have the same feeling about churches and yes I'd rather see money spend on missions and helping people than architecture but why am I suspecious when see them chose a "tin can" architecture over something more organic?

My dream home is not a fancy brick building with columns but rather a really nice log cabin or lodge style building. Does anyone think the West End Stadium is "grandiose", no but it is warm and inviting. It connects better with what baseball is all about that the cement structure on Mauldin Road. Yet, some people would say the old stadium was "good enough."

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:huh: I don't think I understand. You seem to be arguing both sides.

Architecture doesn't determine what goes on inside of a building. The transparency of a building's function can cause confusion to an individual passing by, but in no way determines the failure of those inside. I highly doubt that Greenville's lower graduation rates than those neighboring counties of our's really has anything to do with the architecture.

Also, do you even support public education?

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:huh: I don't think I understand. You seem to be arguing both sides.

Architecture doesn't determine what goes on inside of a building. The transparency of a building's function can cause confusion to an individual passing by, but in no way determines the failure of those inside. I highly doubt that Greenville's lower graduation rates than those neighboring counties of our's really has anything to do with the architecture.

Also, do you even support public education?

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I have serious reservations about public education. Sometimes it can be better than private education but that is usually driven by the commitment of the local community. Public education can often be a diservice to those it's intended to service if their is not serious accountability taken into account. I don't like the fact people are forced to go to particular schools. I know these policies took place during the era of integration and busing but I still think it's wrong anyone to be denied to to to school based on where they live.

I do think architecture can influence who goes into the building however and what you see on the outside reflects the values of those in charge.

I only "support" public education because the government makes me with my tax dollars and I abide by that system in the spirit of being legal but if I had the choice I would support an institution a beleived in and knew my money was being well invested. I don't like the fact my tax dollars are being used to contruct prision looking buildings, being wasted on technology using bad financing procedures. I'm all for investing in newer technology but not financed the way the are planning on it. I also wish the schools would use open source solutions like Linux and related open source projects. It would be a lot cheaper, more secure and the students would learn better skills instead of paying for overpriced microsoft solutions.

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Alright where to start....first off when I was in high school (we just had our 10 year reunion) I knew more troublemakers and druggies that went to private schools than went to school with me in public schools. Just because they are private DOESN'T make then better, or have the students want to be there more. I don't have any kids in public schools yet and I'm glad some of my taxes go to help support the schools!

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Dr. Fisher is doing a great job with Greenville County Schools. I approve of her recent pay raise.

Thanks for sharing the link. A very informative overview of GCS.

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I realize it's not exactly construction-related, but I found this article from today's Greenville News interesting. It discusses how the majority of new students in Greenville County schools are Hispanic. I was expecting to read an article about the drain on school funds by illegal immigrants. Rather, it discussed how highly the Hispanic children are achieving in school and how involved the parents are in their child's education. I hope everyone else enjoys this as much as I did:

http://www.greenvilleonline.com/apps/pbcs....60318/1001/NEWS

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