Mild weather throughout the 2012-2013 construction season allowed crews to complete more of the new Protsman Elementary School ahead of schedule. Phase I of the project is expected to be completed in August.
The steel framework has been erected and brick work continues to be done on the new school located at 1121 Harrison Ave. in Dyer.
Designed by Schmidt & Associates Architects of Indianapolis, Protsman Elementary will replace the 51-year old school that opened its doors in 1962.
Among highlights of the state-of-the-art school will be a media center reading area and reading lab, computer lab off the media center, a multi-purpose stage, large cafeteria and a community center with a kitchenette. Administrators say it will provide students and teachers with a safer, updated learning facility.
The school is named for Roscoe E. Protsman, a long-time educator in the Lake Central School Corporation.
Construction of the new state-of-the-art elementary school is part of the November 2011 referendum passed by voters from Dyer, St. John and Schererville. The referendum provides $160 million for Protsman’s new facility, demolition of the elementary school and the vast expansion of Lake Central High School in St. John.
Bill Ledyard, director of facilities for Lake Central schools, says planning for the new Protsman began immediately after the referendum’s approval and continued through the winter of 2011-2012.
Schmidt & Associates based Protsman on similar schools it has designed in Indianapolis, Ledyard says. The building committee and Lake Central officials were able to tour those schools to see how the space is used.
Groundbreaking for the new Protsman Elementary took place on July 18, 2012 with more than 100 people – including Lake Central School Corp. representatives, Dyer officials, members of the Protsman family, construction personnel, parents and children – on hand in humid 95 degree temperatures and blazing sun to open a new chapter in 21st Century education.
However, construction was already under way at the new school.
“When [the community] sees what great facilities they have, it’ll only bring energy and people will begin to get positive. They’ll really understand what education can do for kids,” said Protsman Principal Glenn Brown at the groundbreaking.
The Lake Central School Corporation web site features The Construction Zone with a live cam view of construction going on at Protsman Elementary as well as at Lake Central High School. In addition, this portion of the web site includes the design of the new elementary school and highlights of specific areas within the school.
To view the construction, log on to www.lcsc.us/ and click on either pesdesignconcepts.blogspot.com/ or lakecentral.workzonecam.com/protsman.