With interactive touch screens and mobile tables easy to maneuver for group work, high school students taking classes at the school’s West Campus will now have a new way of learning in the newly renovated Eagle Tech space.

Eagle Tech, or the Eagle’s Nest, is on the ground floor of the West Campus building and previously housed classrooms and administrative offices, according to Slone Lang, director of the West Campus.

Renovations began last summer and were completed earlier this year, Lang said. The new space is outfitted with two large rooms which will serve as classrooms for integrated classes.

Ninth grade English and History classes will be combined as well as ninth grade Health and Biology classes. Both integrated classes, as well as algebra, will be taught in the newly renovated space.

“Eagle Tech is a project-based learning program,” Lang said. “I am really excited to get our students who are going to be the first class for Eagle Tech in there and have them start working and utilizing the space.”

She added that this is the first time the West Campus is integrating classes.

The space is set up as two large classrooms with a glass wall as a divider. The rooms are outfitted with six mobile café tables, mobile chairs, soft seating and a few desks. Each classroom also has interactive displays and large screens.

For the 2018/2019 school year, Lang said only ninth grade students will utilize the classrooms in Eagle Tech, but said that every year another grade level will be added.

Most of the renovation work was done by the school division’s maintenance department, including removing and reconfiguring interior walls, replacing ceiling grid and tiles, installing new LED lighting, reconfiguring HVAC vents and controls and updating electrical systems, according to Greg Cuddy, director of operations for Franklin County Public Schools.

Some outside contractors were also brought in, Cuddy said. New floors were put in by GFW Construction, painters were brought in through Hales Painting and Layman’s Contracting installed new sinks in each classroom.

The renovation cost $175,000, according to Cuddy.

Student classes in Eagle Tech will begin when school starts in August, but the space has already been utilized for professional development.

Teachers and administrators in the school division have already been using the space throughout the summer for training purposes. Lang said past trainings have usually been held at the Gereau Center in Rocky Mount.

“With Eagle Tech I think it became a good option for professional development,” she added.

As for the coming school year, she said students have already expressed their excitement about the new classrooms.

“I think that our maintenance department and other entities involved did a great job,” she said. “It’s going to offer opportunities for students to work collaboratively.”

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