SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Today, Springfield voters have a chance to tour a school that is more than 100 years old.

Reed Academy, one of the oldest schools in the SPS district, would receive a new building if Proposition S passes in the April 4 election.

Starting at 5:30 p.m. today, March 2, community members will have the chance to tour the school. A presentation will follow at 6 p.m.

Reed Principal Sara Strohm said a new building would allow Reed to accommodate their students, staff and future visitors.

“We are not ADA-accessible,” Strohm said. “As you noticed when you came in the door, you’re greeted with a large set of stairs and that doesn’t articulate that the school is here and ready for you.” 

As I was given a tour around the school, Principal Strohm told me that they make special adjustments for people who have ADA accommodations.

The elevator system at the school is not always reliable and makes it challenging, according to Principal Strohm.

One of the major issues that Reed has to deal with is its plumbing.

There are times were their basement is flooded and they have had to tape plastic buckets to the pipes due to leaking. A few of their classrooms have had to deal with flooding which forced Principal Strohm to adjust on the fly.

Another area of concern for Reed Academy is the lack of space overall.

Principal Strohm said classroom sizes and appropriate space for extracurricular activities is something that is quite challenging for the growing student population size.

“Right now, we have one visual arts classroom, so being able to split that into multiple disciplines for the visual arts in order to allow students a more immersive experience, “ said Strohm.

She told me that their nationally recognized choir has to deal with a cramped working space.

The choir room holds 60 kids at a time and the room is not acoustic and deals with leaks, Strohm said. She added that the lack of classroom space for their special needs students needs a drastic upgrade as well.

Strohm said that the kids need adequate space to be able to properly move around and learn on a daily basis.

The gymnasium is used for more than just gym classes. The staff has had to move foldable tables into the gym so students have a place to sit down and eat.

In Proposition S, the new gym would be able to accommodate the growing student body and be used as a storm shelter in the community.