Why is this project necessary?
David Prouty High School (DPHS) is a unique, public high school serving the families of Spencer and East Brookfield under a regional agreement between the two towns. Built in 1966, the existing building is unable to successfully function because of regular systems failures and poorly sized and outfitted teaching, support and administrative spaces. SEBRSD has struggled to maintain accreditation of science programs and has been unable to meet the physical needs of vocational technical programs, arts programs and athletic programs with the existing building and site. The building was designed to support an educational model that is outdated and inappropriate to the needs of today’s high school students.
DPHS was slated for renovation in 2012 but the District did not bring the project to the community for a vote and the project was shelved before drawings were completed. Ten years later the District continues to spend a large portion of the operating budget on maintenance of aging infrastructure systems while attempting to offer a broad array of course offerings and 21st century learning opportunities.
SEBRSD struggles to draw and retain students to the school because of the condition of the building and has been spending considerable operating budget on maintenance rather than educational investments. The project cost of addressing all of the existing building systems, and maintenance issues is $62.9M which represents the cost to the district of staying the course. That cost does not improve the educational delivery model, leaving open the possibility that students will choose to attend other districts with better classrooms, vocational spaces and facilities.
In contrast, the proposed renovation/addition building project will provide a healthy and modern high school and refurbished athletic complex to the families of Spencer and East Brookfield. The proposal includes a five classroom pre-kindergarten program with a separate entrance and playground. It also includes new science labs and fully equipped vocational studios, digital innovation lab, a new media center, outdoor learning spaces, a new gym and game field and a fully renovated auditorium and a fully renovated cafeteria.
The project will be a Certified High-Performance School with enhanced energy savings features, stormwater features, outdoor learning spaces, a rooftop solar array and educational and demonstration features for the community.
The proposed David Prouty High School is all about community!
If approved by the voters, the building will be completed by the Fall of 2026.