Sierra Vista hosts building dedication before Open House Night

Sierra Vista Junior high School Principal Carolyn Hoffman, right, discusses the features of one of 21 new classrooms made for steel shipping containers with Assemblywoman Christy Smith, left, and State Senator Scott Wilk at Sierra Vista Junior High School in Canyon Country on Thursday. Dan Watson/The Signal

Marking a monumental moment in the school’s half-century-long history, the staff and families of Sierra Vista Junior High School invited the public to attend the ribbon-cutting and dedication ceremony for the new buildings on their campus Thursday.

Held on the Sierra Vista campus the same night as the school’s open house, a mixture of community members, students and William S. Hart Union High School District board and faculty members became some of the first to tour the latest additions to the Canyon Country junior high

The interior of one of the 21 new classrooms made from steel shipping containers at Sierra Vista Junior high School in Canyon Country on Thursday. Dan Watson/The Signal

The new classrooms and facilities, housed in what officials described as former metal shipping containers converted into modern classrooms, were more affordable than traditional trailers or buildings, and Sierra Vista is now the second school in the district, after Placerita, to have this type of architecture, according to Collyn Nielsen, the Hart District’s chief administrative officer.

The project includes “22 new classrooms, as well as all the hardscape, planters and additional work (on the campus),“ said Nielsen. “Each classroom is made up of three shipping containers, science labs are four and the new student learning center is made up of five shipping containers.”

School administrators said in addition to close to two dozen new rooms, science labs, an art studio and an increased amount of floor space in their packed classrooms, they were also excited about the new student learning center located in the middle of campus.

Dozens of attendees wait for the ribbon cutting ceremony for 21 new classrooms made from steel shipping containers at Sierra Vista Junior high School in Canyon Country on Thursday. Dan Watson/The Signal

“It’s going to help us increase our efforts in providing our students with more cross-curricular, differentiation and team-teaching learning opportunities,” said Sierra Vista Principal Carolyn Hoffman. “So, beyond the excitement of our newly renovated classrooms, our modernization supports our continued emphasis on personal wellness, self-development, relationships, school safety and academics.”

After the ceremony, Hoffman cut the ribbon while flanked by the various district administrators and staff members who had worked on the project.

The community leaders and elected officials in attendance, such as State Sen. Scott Wilk, R-Santa Clarita, Assemblywoman Christy Smith, D-Santa Clarita, and representatives from 5th District County Supervisor Kathryn Barger’s office, were invited to join the public and see the classrooms.

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