New Willard School Prepares for Students Arrival

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WILLARD, Mo. — With a focus on collaboration and flexibility, Willard Intermediate School- South is finishing up the project under budget and right on time for the first day of school.

“We’re about a week and a half away and getting pretty excited,” said principal Stacey Pippin. “We still have a few things to do, but teachers are putting the final touches on things now.”

Teachers are stocking up on supplies and sharpening their skills as the start of the new school year inches closer– all that’s missing are the students. Willard Intermediate School – South will open doors for the first time on August 15, as finishing touches are made on the $19.5 million project.

“Five years ago we went and toured a few locations around us, sat down and said ‘what’s the prime learning space we want for our students,'” recalled Pippin.

Educators say the new school will take stress off of the other intermediate building across town– which was able to accommodate the rapidly growing number of Willard district students. “This alleviates both locations and allows us to do a lot more collaboration,” said Pippin.

Highlights of the building include a full-sized gym, colorful library and two STEM labs. “A lot of students learn by doing, and that gives us great spaces to do that and kids surprise us with what they can figure out and take apart,” she said.

The building maximizes space by placing teachers offices outside of classrooms– opening up work spaces to create a limitless learning environment.

The school, located at 630 S. Miller Ave. in Springfield, will host a ribbon cutting ceremony and open house on Tuesday, August 6 at 5 p.m.

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