New elementary school off to a grand start | August 28, 2009 | Danville Express | |

Danville Express

Newsfront - August 28, 2009

New elementary school off to a grand start

Creekside opens its doors to new student body

by Geoff Gillette

The first day of school is always an exciting time, but never more so than when a brand new school welcomes in its first crop of students into a new facility. Such was the case Tuesday when the school district's newest school, Creekside Elementary, opened its doors.

The brand new facility in the Alamo Creek subdivision on Camino Tassajara is a unique fixture in the area, the first two-story elementary school in the district. Where most elementary schools in the San Ramon Valley are laid out in the "open campus" style with several small buildings spread out across the school grounds, Creekside concentrates all of its classrooms in one large building.

The school, funded and built by Shapell Homes, departed from the norm for district elementary schools because of the dictates of the parcel. Because of its shape and topography, architects found that building up rather than out was a more efficient use of the space.

Technology is a key component of the new facility. Principal Paul Foucart said the entire facility is set up for wireless Internet connectivity and the school has a sizable cache of laptops to provide classrooms with full access to computers.

"We have over 70 laptops set up in a COW (Computers on Wheels) system," Foucart stated. "We can put them in any classroom, and the students can use them for projects or to assist in learning."

In addition, there are 10 desktop MACs available to students in the school's library.

Each classroom comes complete with an LCD projector as well as a sophisticated "sound field" to help students in the learning process.

"Teachers wear a wireless microphone," explained Foucart. "The sound field makes it possible for the students to hear everything the teacher says, even when they are turned and facing the board."

Total capacity of Creekside is set at 720 students. Foucart said that when they opened their doors Tuesday the student population was already at 480.


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