PHOTOS: Aviation High School Breaks Ground For New Permanent Campus

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In a ceremony held just north and across the street from the Museum of Flight, VIPs today (Aug 23) broke ground at the new home of Highline School District’s Aviation High School.

Founded in 2004, this aviation-themed high school focuses on college preparatory classes in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Students attend the school from as far away as Olympia, Everett and Bremerton.

To date the school has operated out of two different temporary facilities and is currently using the old Olympic Middle School in Des Moines, WA.

When the new building opens in 2013, it will be adjacent to and operate in cooperation with the Museum of Flight. The new school facility will be called the Raisbeck Aviation High School in honor of James and Sherry Raisbeck for their $4 million lead gift.

The total cost of the school relocation project will be $43.5 million with funding split between Federal, State and local sources, including 35% raised from private individuals and foundations.

BTB photographer Michael Brunk attended today’s ground-breaking and shot the following photos. You can click individual thumbnails to view them larger.

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5 Responses to “PHOTOS: Aviation High School Breaks Ground For New Permanent Campus”
  1. Dana Franks says:

    I’m delighted to see that progress is being made toward giving the students of Aviation High School a permanent home. I need to ask though: Does the commnunity realize that Aviation High School has no library? Worse, they have no LIBRARIAN! At least if they had a librarian they would have someone who could help these cutting edge students perform research using the resources of surrounding institutions (KCLS, SCCC, HCC, etc.) How is this okay? I maintain, it is not, and must be rememdied.

    Respectfully, Dana Franks

    • According to materials provided at today’s event, the school will have access to the Museum of Flight’s extensive archive and library (located directly adjacent to the new school). Classrooms will have smaller, relevant resources built in and students will have their own computer plus access to the school’s computer lab for online research.

      It’s not clear to me how a traditional librarian would best operate in an environment like this (as part of the computer lab staff perhaps?), but it’s a question worth asking. We’ll see what we can dig up on that issue.

      • Dana Franks says:

        I am a librarian, and I also teach a course on school librarianship in Highline Community College’s Library & Information Services program, so I have some experience with this. I am not speaking on behalf of either the college or that program but as a private citizen who’s kids went through/are going through HSD schools, and with an interest in seeing to it that all HSD students are fairly served.

        The notion of “traditional librarian” in the minds of most folks is miles away from what real librarians do. Librarians in most types of libraries have Master’s degrees in Library Services / Information Services. School librarians are certificated teachers with a school library-media endorsement; most school librarians have Master’s degrees as well. What librarians provide to students, and the way we engage them in an educational encounter, is dramatically different from what computer lab staff do. I could no sooner set up a computer network and provide for its effecient workings and security than they could provide library services. They’re just two different jobs.

        It’s important to note, also, that the resources of the Museum of Flight library were acquired to meet and serve the mission of the Museum of Flight, not college-bound high school students – students who, in addition to aviation, also study poetry, world literature, world languages, geography, history, biology, chemistry, physics, economics, and other subjects. The Museum of Flight Library does not support this kind of coursework; it’s not designed to do that nor should it be.

        Finally, the colleges to which these students are applying (and being accepted) expect them to come to college with significant “Information Literacy” skills. This is what certified librarians teach. Without access to these two great resources – a collection (both print and electronic) assembled to meet their needs and a professional librarian to teach them how to do research – they begin their college experience at a disadvantage, and behind their fellow classmates.

        We owe it to these remarkable and motivated students to provide them with library services.

  2. Dale says:

    Big push like this for more engineering graduates when I graduated from high school many many decades ago. But after graduating from college I learned that being an engineer too often meant working on military projects that came and went meaning being laid off from time to time. I learned that engineers were assigned to way too much non-engineering work so the half-life of a typical engineer was about five years. Even after transferring to commercial real engineering jobs became more and more difficult to find so retirement came way too soon.

    Loved my engineering in Antarctica, other places in the world, and most of the time here in Seattle, but don’t recommend it to youngsters who are only looking for something to do with expectations of a high salary until THEY decide to move on.

  3. Really? says:

    I believe today’s new generation of graduates are not necessarily looking for “cradle-to-grave” jobs. They expect to leverage their experiences to grow into many areas of work.

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