Changes are coming, and quickly, to Enota Multiple Intelligences Academy in Gainesville.
The Gainesville City School System announced plans for construction of a new building for the elementary school at the current site on Enota Avenue. Construction will begin when the current school year ends.
The project is made possible with the recently passed renewal of the special purpose local option sales tax for education, which provides funding for capital projects including renovations or construction of schools.
The school district had previously discussed renovating Enota, which celebrated its 60th anniversary last year, but determined constructing a new school would be more cost-effective, according to a letter distributed to Enota parents Friday.
“Not only is it more cost-effective to build a new building, but it will also ensure that our students at Enota have access to state-of-the-art technology and other amenities,” the letter, signed by Superintendent Wanda Creel and Enota Principal Wesley Roach, stated.
Though the project is in its early stages, there are a few details already known.
The project will begin at the end of this school year and will require a temporary school site for Enota students next school year.
“This will be our ‘growing pains’ year,” the letter stated. “But, the builders tell us that we should begin the 2017-2018 school year in our brand-new home.”
Creel said plans for the temporary location will be shared as soon as they are finalized.
“We’ll look for a place (based on) the cost for the infrastructure in order to do a temporary school,” she said. “We will not have to start from scratch. We’ll bring in temporary units to house the school, but we’ll look for a place with wiring and all that stuff that means we don’t have to start from scratch to make it happen.”
The new school building will be designed to retain qualities of the current building, including using the “beautiful wooden doors” at the front of the school.
The school district is in communication with the city of Gainesville’s planning department about possible road realignments near Enota to ensure the city’s project will “not be problematic for our school.”
Creel said the new building will offer students and teachers all they need to be successful.
“They’ll have state-of-the-art technology, classrooms that have been designed to meet the needs of current instructional models now and the students that we have,” she said. “It will have all-new plumbing, and it will just be an environment that is conducive to learning and today’s 21st century learner.”