Improvements coming to BC in 2016-17

Natalie Alteri, Reporter

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As the 2015-2016 school year comes to a close, students at Brookfield Central have some great changes to look forward to for the 2016-2017 year. Starting next school year, a variety of spaces will be updated and repurposed in ways that will allow for increased work between students. In the words of Associate Principal Mrs. Farley, “with these changes there is a theme of creativity, collaboration, critical thinking and communication.”

The recent addition of Chromebooks as a widespread personal resource will allow for computer lab space to be transformed into additional spaces for different art forms. The lower level computer lab will be a new classroom for Mrs. Schiro, complete with plans to add a stage to this room, allowing it to take on the shape of a performance classroom. The timing of this addition coincides with a class that will run for the first time next year: Oral Interpretation, Acting, and Directing. Outside of the school day, Mrs. Schiro envisions this new space as great home for One Act Play rehearsals, Debate, Forensics.  Additionally, Lab 81 will see a transition into a new art classroom. This will allow one of the smaller art classrooms to serve as a studio for AP Art students. With several students completing professional quality,time-consuming art portfolios, this space will be a valuable addition to the Art department.

In an effort to reflect the collaborative atmosphere of modern day workplaces, additional spaces will be created for student collaboration. These changes include the addition of two collaboration areas: one in the Foreign Language hallway and the other in the Science hallway. The library will also see ongoing changes and additions over the coming years to move in a similar direction. The upstairs library space will eventually include additional student collaboration spaces upon relocation of the upstairs bookshelves. Downstairs, Mr. Paese is looking to update table work spaces to serve as an accessible extension of the classroom: envision the possibility of booths with outlets and a private projector screen for group work.

“It’s about creating a space that teachers can utilize for their classes, and those that I have talked to seem excited about the prospects of these changes,” Mr. Paese said.

An additional in-process project that will continue into next year is the development of the Lancer Lounge, an in-school coffee shop that will likely make a home in the space of the current Teacher Lounge. Though still in the early stages, this project has developed through countless hours of work by Mrs. Fisher’s Business Leadership students. They devoted much of this year’s course to researching potential business ventures, conducting surveys, and communicating with local businesses in order to develop a complete business model for our Lancer Lounge. Next year’s business leadership students will continue this project with the goal making the Lancer Lounge a tangible reality.

Throughout each of these improvements is a clear vision of cultivating practical creative skills in a productive environment. Though these spaces will be for students, it is evident that administrators and teachers are excited about the potential of these projects as well. The 2016-2017 school year will certainly be welcoming many changes with the intent to improve the already thriving collaborative environment at Brookfield Central.