KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The North Kansas City School District opened two new schools Wednesday.
Northview and Rising Hill elementary schools opened brand new buildings. The district converted the original elementary schools into sixth-grade student centers. Those centers open this year as well. They serve only sixth-grade students to better prepare them for middle and high school.
“Sixth grade is a really challenging time in the life of a student. We spent over a year with teachers and administrators researching, talking about and designing an instructional model we felt would best support our sixth-graders as they make that transition to middle school," explained Assistant Superintendent Chad Sutton.
The new elementary school buildings are designed with the media center in the center. Each grade level is in a wing made up of five classrooms surrounding the library. The set-up encourages collaboration.
The bathrooms in the schools are in individual stalls with a shared sink space. There is no separation by gender.
“When children are using the restroom, we can stand and we can watch them go into their private restroom and come out of their private restroom. The only interaction they have is in the sink area. It heightens our supervision and ability to keep them safe," said Dr. Starr Rich, principal at Northview.
Sutton said voters approved a bond in 2016 to pay for renovations and building the new schools.