Following is a message from Arlington’s Superintendent of Schools sent to the Arlington Public School Community on February 28, 2022.
In Celebration: New Wings of AHS now Open!
Dear Arlington Public Schools Community,
I hope you and your students enjoyed a wonderful February break. I am writing with the exciting news that today, the first wings of the new high school opened to students and staff. This milestone comes after many years of hard work. I appreciate the effort the AHS Building Committee and project partners have put into building a state-of-the-art educational facility that will bring our flagship school up to date with modern teaching and learning facilities.
I toured the new Performing Arts and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) wings with student leaders a few weeks ago and their excitement and readiness to learn in our new wing was evident. The new wings feature:
- 16 classrooms, 17 science labs and 5 visual art studios
- 6,500 square feet of interdisciplinary makerspaces
- 120 seat Discourse Lab with technology for a variety of teaching and learning modes
- Four-story lightwell in the STEAM wing, reflecting natural light into each floor
- 826 seat Auditorium with 2,140 square foot stage, greenroom, and fly loft
- Dedicated band and chorus rooms, eight practice rooms and a digital production studio
The project schedule was reconfigured in June 2021 after unavoidable schedule impacts. To allow on-time completion of the majority of Phase 1 spaces, the Auditorium took the brunt of the impact, and is anticipated to open in early April. Opening of the new buildings and the start of the next phase of construction marks a transition period. I appreciate the community’s patience as we navigate new driving and parking patterns and reassigned uses of the old building. District administration offices will remain in the same place for the next phase of construction.
Phase 2 of the project is already underway. This phase begins with demolition of part of the old school, followed by construction of a new wing that includes Humanities, District offices and Menotomy Preschool. Demolition is anticipated to take place from March to June, and the newly constructed Phase 2 buildings are expected to open September 2023. The new school is anticipated to be complete in 2024, followed by a year of site work. Families of APS students can refer to our Construction Timeline and Grade Comparison chart to determine what parts of the building project will be in process or completed when your child is a student at AHS.
Arlington High School is an integral part of the fabric of this community, and our exceptional students are not the only beneficiaries. The new school is designed to be an active community hub, engaging and inviting multi-generational uses and programming. After the Auditorium opens, we hope to offer parents, community, and staff members from other schools tours of the new wings. For more information on the AHS Building Project, I encourage you to visit www.ahsbuilding.org. Thank you for your partnership during this exciting phase in Arlington High School’s history.
Elizabeth C. Homan, Ph.D.
Superintendent, Arlington Public Schools