• GALLERY: Washington Celebrates Successful Building Launch

    GALLERY: Washington Celebrates Successful Building Launch

    After months of long and hardwork Washington STEM Academy students and staff are enjoying their updated facilities. Though work continues Read More
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After months of long and hardwork Washington STEM Academy students and staff are enjoying their updated facilities. Though work continues on throughout the district, take a look at some of the opening week moments at Washington.

WARSAW – The community got its first official look at the new Fisher Field Friday night.

The gorgeous new synthetic turf field at the Tigers Athletic Complex was on display during a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

The new field turf project, which was done this summer, was made possible through a partnership between Lutheran Health Network/KCH and the Warsaw Community Schools System. Lutheran/KCH announced a 10-year, one-million dollar partnership with the WCS back in February.

The ribbon-cutting included school officials such as Superintendent Dr. David Hoffert, WCHS principal Troy Akers and WCHS athletic director Dave Anson, along with WCHS student-athletes and representatives from Lutheran and KCH.

The field, which will also include a new track around its exterior, will allow many more WCHS students to use the facility. Programs such as marching band, PE classes and athletic programs other than just football will be able to use the new field.

The turf field is the second of its kind in the Northern Lakes Conference. Goshen’s Foreman Field is also currently in the final stages of having a tug field installed. Other area schools with turf fields include Penn, South Bend St.  Joseph, Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger, East Noble, Bluffton and Homestead. There are approximately 65 turf fields in the state now, according to the IHSAA.

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Work is continuing at full force at Washington Elementary, Edgewood Middle School and Lincoln Elementary. As walls have gone up at each building, so too has interior work such as plumbing, drywalling and roofing installation.

Lincoln Elementary

Upcoming work at Lincoln Elementary includes: the installation of roof frames, elevator roof decking, brick work on the north and west gymnaisum wall, gymnasium slab placement, roof curbs and fans, ductwork and fire protection installation.

The majority of the new concrete floors have been polished and stained at this time.

Washington Elementary

Washington's construction continues with work on mechanical piping and plumbing, electrical rough in and light installation, concrete work, masonry for the cafeteria wall and patches at windows, hanging drywall, ceiling installation, VCU connections, exhaust fans and continued work on roofing.

Edgewood Middle School

New business at Edgewood Middle School includes mechanical piping and plumbing set-up and work, placement of new elecectrical circuits, fire alarm work and demolishion of remaining sidewalk.

Concluded work includes mechanical piping and plumbing, installation of new circuits and fire alarm work, tying in sanitary working, framing work throughout the building and fire sprinkler installation.

After what felt like weeks of rain and dismal weather, the sun has finally started to peek out in Kosciusko County. With the drying weather, construction crews at Edgewood, Washington and Lincoln are able to push forward with more momentum. 

Edgewood has made significant strides with concrete pouring now finished and the science area to be completed by May 20. Work will continue on mechanical piping and plumping at Edgewood as well as work on the electrical and lighting in the science and mechanical areas. Crews will also work to install new sidewalk at the new bus parking area, set diffusers in the science ceiling, install ducts in the locker area, paint the science area and install science casework and sprinklers appropriately. Wall framing for the new addition will begin next week.

In just a week, Washington's building expansion is beginning to truly take shape with flooring and the structural frame of the building already visible. Work has included plumbing and piping, installing electrical systems to the addition, masonry on the north wall, installing roof frames, framing the exterior and interior wall and hanging duct work in the cafeteria. Roofing work will begin next week.

Students at Lincoln were treated to a special opportunity to leave their stamp on the building. All Lincoln students were invited to sign their names on a structural beam being placed inside the new elementary school. Workers at Lincoln are barreling forward through the construction process with the setting of steel in the cafeteria and media center, masonry completion of the gym east wall and setting up masonry of the south wall. Work began on stairwell B1 and the elevator shaft and brick colors for the building have been selected. 

WARSAW — As the Warsaw Community Schools design-build program progresses, Washington STEM Academy is taking on a whole different look.

Design-build supervisor Jim Lemasters described some of the changes taking place at Washington. The most visible is the new addition to the side of the building facing SR 15. Already, framework for the new STEM lab, office area and fifth and sixth-grade classrooms is up.

Jim Lemasters shows off a rendering of what Washington school will look like when construction is finished.

While Washington Elementary has been a STEM school for some time now, the existing STEM lab does not contain adequate space for science-technology-engineering-math learning. Storage has also been a problem. The new lab incorporates 10 extra feet of storage space and will be large enough, students will have plenty of space to explore all STEM has to offer.

The walls of the STEM lab will be glass, allowing parents to see what goes on inside. The main entrance will be moved and will come in near the STEM lab, through the new, secure office space. A new nurse’s station is also under construction next to the office.

Lemasters added that the driveway and entrance will be completely rerouted to make parent pickup and drop off safer and more convenient. Also noticeable along the exterior of the new construction is an overhang covering where a fresh sidewalk will soon be poured.

Inside the existing portion of the building, change is also underway inside the cafeteria. During removal of the old ceiling, workers found skylights. Leaving these uncovered allows in enough natural sunlight, the fluorescent ceiling lights can be turned off, saving the school on energy.

Principal Tom Ray is pleased with the skylights and with the experience Washington has had overall with the workers coming into the school.

“The people we are working with, I am astounded by,” he said. “They are very accommodating. They are very kind. The customer comes first. They’re always saying, ‘are you pleased with this and, if you’re not, we want you to tell us,'”

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