School officials, on Thursday are breaking ground on a new $14.1 million school building that will replace the school's existing building at 3685 Middle Country Road in Calverton.
It is being paid for through a $21-million bond that was issued this past summer.
The new two-story school, which will serve 500 students in grades K-8, was needed, officials said, because of increasing enrollment. Right now, the school serves 300 students, but had to hold a lottery during the last enrollment period because of the school's popularity — it is the only charter school in Suffolk County and educates students from 14 school districts.
The 12-year-old school said it also wanted to add services for students in grades 7 and 8 — the district currently provides education to students in grades K-6.
The new 50,000 sq. ft. school, designed by BBS Architects, Landscape Architects and Engineers and being built with the help of Stalco Construction, SCC Construction Management, DeLuxe Building Systems, and PW Grosser Consultants, will include a two-story classroom wing with 16 classrooms, an auditorium/gymnasium, a library, music and art classrooms, an administration wing, and a kitchen wing.
Also, included in the scope of project is redevelopment of the entire site; construction of a large drop-off/pickup loop wrapped around the new building with separate drop-off/pickup areas for busses and passenger cars; and a new asphalt access roadway.The site will feature a general play area with natural grass and additional landscaping throughout, including tree plantings and standing ornamental lampposts.
At present, the students do not have a gymnasium and are learning in two buildings and several modular classrooms.
The modulars will be torn down once the new building is complete by the start of the 2014/2015 school year and the existing buildings on the school grounds will be used for storage.
“Today’s ceremony marks the beginning of a new chapter in our school’s history. The program expansion and rapidly growing enrollment that generated the need for the new home for our school are the testimony to the parents’ trust in our dedication to quality education for all children of the Eastern Long Island community,” said RCS Principal and Executive Director Raymond Ankrum.