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Summit Charter Academy Lombardi Campus to open Monday
Second new school for K-6 students
For the second time in the same school year, Burton School District kindergarten-to sixth-grade students will get to experience a new school when Summit Charter Academy Lombardi Campus opens its doors on Monday to greet them.
“I’m really excited. It looks really big,” said fifth grader Abigail O’Bosky, 10, as she walked in pulling a little red wagon loaded with books. “Everything is new.”
Abigail, who said she went spring shopping for a new outfit to wear on the first day of a new school, was helping teacher Jymme McCracken move in to a new classroom. Abigail said she had not toured the new school, but liked the basketball hoops and the library, and was looking forward to seeing new playground equipment in the future.
The wait was long but worth it, she said.
It has been two years and a month since Burton School District administrators and board members first broke ground using gold-colored shovels on the district’s ninth school — Summit Charter Academy Lombardi Campus. And after 25 months of waiting, more than the originally planned 15 months, dozens of teachers, students and parents are moving in to the state-of-the-art, high-performance green, two-story configuration school with International Baccalaureate Early Years program candidate status.
As bells rang and the intercom public address system was tested in the office, unpacking continued in the classrooms.
In a downstairs room, third-grade teacher Jenifer Sanders prepared her new classroom with a lot of help from room mom Lisa Lindsay, a few students — Rebecca and Ty Lindsay, Sierra Weisenberger, and Lindsay’s son, Tyler.
“It’s beautiful and more than I imagined. Everything smells new,” Sanders said. “The view is wonderful.”
The room sports large windows overlooking, and a back door leading to, the school’s courtyard — one that will eventually have benches and potted plants and flowers. Past the courtyard is the school library.
“I envision my kids outside reading on nice days, or reading a group story out there,” she said. “I feel so at home here. Things are all made for the kids’ sizes.”
In August, the Lombardi students began the new school year in a room meant for high school students — the newly-built educational building at Summit Charter Collegiate Academy.
Sanders, who gave up a family vacation to move in to the new classroom, said she wants everything in place before Monday.
She wasn’t the only hard-working one.
Upstairs, teacher Kristen Lambie’s room appeared to be covered in boxes.
With a dozen parent and student helpers, she unpacked and placed things around the class.
“I sent a note home asking for help and everyone showed up. It took 30 minutes — with five pick-up trucks — to move me out of the old classroom,” Lambie said. “I’m very blessed. Over the past three days, I’ve had 20 helpers. I even had to turn down some help. I was done packing.”
Lambie praised the beautiful school.
The closed campus has a lobby and doors leading to a multipurpose room and cafeteria, the administration building and hallways leading to the library and classrooms. The lower floor houses the younger grades, the second floor — fourth-, fifth- and sixth-graders. Kindergartners have their own special wing, complete with tiny counters and bathroom fixtures.
The surroundings are just as beautiful.
Parents dropping off children can literally follow, not a yellow brick road, but two brightly colored yellow street lines, past a windmill, to the school — which sits just before the cul-de-sac at the end of a Lombardi Street segment north of Westfield Avenue. On Wednesday, children on bicycles and scooters could be seen smiling and laughing as they encircled the campus.
Across the street on the east side is a pasture with grazing horses, to the south is an orchard of white-flowering almond trees, and sitting directly north of the school are several steps leading off the new basketball courts to a never-before-used green football field.
“It’s great to be here today seeing everyone working together,” Weisenberger said. “I’m looking forward to Monday.”
Contact Esther Avila at 784-5000, Ext. 1045. Follow her on Twitter @Avila_recorder.
SCA Lombardi by the numbers:
Ground Breaking: Feb. 18, 2011
Cost: $20 million
Staff: 40, including teachers
Number of students: 550
Student capacity: 800
No. registered for 2013-2014: 714 and growing