Luxemburg-Casco dedicates new middle school, auto and metal fabrication shops
LUXEMBURG – Three building dedications and ribbon-cutting ceremonies were held in one afternoon to celebrate five years of planning and work for the Luxemburg-Casco School District.
The district hosted the ceremonies after school Thursday, Oct. 29 to officially open its new Middle School building along with a few final items in the high school, its new auto shop (called Ahnapee Automotive), and its new metal fabrication shop.
The dedications bring to a close almost all of the renovations that grew from school and community planning sessions held starting in 2015 and were funded by two referendums passed in 2018 that allocated a total of $27.8 million for the projects.
All three ceremonies were closed to the public because of concerns from the COVID-19 pandemic but were livestreamed by the school. In speeches marking the openings, school officials credited local parents, the community and businesses for the support the district needed to make the plans come to fruition.
"It is because of you that this day has become a reality," Superintendent Glenn Schlender said. "Today is a special day because it represents much more than just the opening of these beautiful facilities."
"Today is a reminder of the Luxemburg-Casco mission," high school principal Troy Haws said. "I can honestly say I've never felt more confident in our school's readiness to prepare our students for the future."
The middle school is now part of the district complex, with the high, primary and intermediate schools and district offices. Now attached to the high school building, the middle school formerly was in Casco.
"We enjoyed our time out in Casco. We've been there so many years, and in that regard, it's sad to leave," principal Todd Chandler told the Star-News. "That said, it's wonderful to be part of this complex, have (easier) access to staff and other personnel. And students will get 10 more minutes in their school day (without the commute)."
Chandler pointed out the new middle school has updated technology that wasn't available in the Casco building and shares a library with the high school, among other improved amenities.
The auto and metal shops were celebrated not just with speeches by school officials but comments from students who said those classes give them something to look forward to each school day, as well as from owners of area auto and metal fabrication businesses who contributed funds, machinery and educational help to the classrooms.
School board President Mike Driedric said the shops will help ramp up the school's technology education and better prepare interested students for the local job market. In fact, at least one auto shop student who was to be on hand couldn't make it because he was working at an area dealership.
"This will help address the skills gap in Northeast Wisconsin," Driedric said.
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The last major renovation to be completed is a new agricultural education building, which Schlender said was supposed to be done by now but is slightly delayed because of the pandemic.
After the ceremonies, Schlender told the Star-News that the result of the school's five years of planning and work especially stand out in a school year, and a year for all people, fraught with difficulties because of the pandemic.
"In such a difficult year, it's not only the culmination of a lot of work, but it feels good to bring something to completion," Schelnder said. "This is a shining star in the midst of a sea of frustration and challenge.
"Ultimately, what this means is the kids will get a better educational experience. These kids are the product of their parents, they're members of the community. When we can come together for their mutual benefit, that really rings the bell, It doesn't get any better than this."
Contact Christopher Clough at 920-741-7952, 920-562-8900 or [email protected]
This article originally appeared on Green Bay Press-Gazette: Luxemburg-Casco dedicates new middle school, auto and metal fabrication shops