Benson High gives sneak-peek of renovations

Posted at 7:06 AM, Aug 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-09 08:17:18-04

Boxes, dust and gutted out rooms are common sights at Benson High.


Currently, the school is undergoing an overhaul.


Principal Tom Wagner says the renovation is more than cosmetics.


"We want to expose these students to more opportunities and we feel like we can do that through our career academies,” he says.


The school offers three career academies: health, business and entrepreneurship and construction and design.


The smallest high school within Omaha Public Schools wants to be a destination school.


Marc Sommer with Jacob Construction gave 3 News Now a tour of the $10-plus million work, one of many bond-supported projects passed by voters in November 2014.


Plans include modernizing rooms, like science classes, to better fit the academies.


The school is also creating a new space for students with special needs, which will featuring a sensory room.


"Different kiddos need different types of either stimuli for activity or might need a calming space,” Sommer says.


The administration area should be done before school resumes in the fall.


Overall work should be completed sometime in the summer of 2018, according to Wagner and Sommer.


Classes located in the southeast area of the school are also receiving a major facelift, forcing teachers and students to take their lessons elsewhere.  About 12 portables are stationed for the displaced classrooms just south of the former entrance.


With all the buzz on site, Wagner says he hopes it’ll bring greater visibility with the open enrollment system by being the first choice for the neighborhood while enticing outside the area with either certificates in the academies or at least enough credits to help students earn their associates while in high school.


To learn more about the bond, click here