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Ennis Daily News

Reviewing Ennis’ new educational landscape

At one end of the U.S. Highway 287 Bypass, you see the development of industry in Ennis with names like Sterilite and CVS.
At the other end, you see the commitment to community healthcare reaffirmed through the new Ennis Regional Medical Center.
And just a few hundred feet from the hospital grounds, Ennis citizens can clearly see a new educational horizon forming that will serve the needs of students for the next several decades.
Of course, the landscape began changing when the Early Childhood Center and Sixth Grade Center were built. Today, they are shining examples of community schoolhouses that combine the aesthetics of the past with the technological and progressive approach of today.
Just down the bypass, the horizon continues to change. Ennis High School is being transformed into a facility that stands tall not only in Ellis County, but also in comparison to the top Class A public schools of the D/FW Metroplex.
Much of the original building, which opened in 1981, has been updated to create wider hallways, more open spaces, and brighter colors for a more conducive learning environment.
Work on the high school addition continues, but community members who have toured the site see the future taking shape. A college-style lecture hall will be equipped to handle high-tech teacher presentations as well as community meetings. The large auditorium will be the epicenter of fine arts performances. Interconnected science labs and electronic “smart boards” will help teachers instruct students with feet firmly planted in the 21st century.
Next door, the new Ennis Junior High School begins to flourish in the distance. Students will surely experience “future shock,” going from a nearly century-old building to a cutting-edge facility with many of the same features as its high school neighbor.
The junior high facility also takes a progressive approach to its heating and cooling through a geothermal system, which uses the land mass under the building as a heat exchanger to heat or cool the facility.
As energy costs continue to rise and pollution concerns continue to be a hot topic, geothermal systems may hold a solution to both of these concerns.
Work also has begun on widening Ensign Road, connecting Highway 34 and the bypass, where the junior high and high school addition are located.
By next summer, citizens can expect to see the vision of a new educational landscape become a reality.
“These are truly exciting times,” said Dr. Eddie Dunn, EISD superintendent. “The needs of our secondary students are well served by the work being done at the new high school addition and junior high school. I’m also excited that we have a Facility Needs Study Committee now in place to look at our remaining needs at the elementary and intermediate levels, taking into account both enrollment growth and the closing of the intermediate campus.
“When all is said and done,” Dunn continued, “I believe we will have facilities in place that everyone in our community will be very proud of, and that will serve the needs of our students for many years to come.”

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Posted by on Dec 26 2007. Filed under Editorials. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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