Uyen Nguyen – Correspondent
The 240,000-square-foot Sharon High School is estimated to be completed by the fall of 2022.
Sharon High School was originally built in 1956 to replace the Charles R. Wilber School, the town’s high school before 1957. There have been additions and changes over the years, but the state of the building deteriorated and no longer met the educational and community needs of the town. Construction of the new Sharon High School building began in the summer of 2020 on the existing baseball field, softball field, and tennis courts.
SHS freshman Kiran Koster says many people are excited to be in the new building, including herself. “To be in the new building, this is a new beginning for us. I feel like it is a kind of change that makes a more positive vibe,” said Koster.
Sophomore Jack Maron says he has had a lot of positive experiences in the current building. “My first day of high school was spent here. I got to spend two years with fellow peers, the staff, and everybody here. I got to see great things happen. I think the community in this building has been great since day one for me,” said Maron.
“I’ve always felt welcome here, so I guess it’s a little bittersweet leaving. But I’m definitely excited to get to the new building, and I think there are great things coming for sure,” added Maron.
SHS ELA teacher Ms. Lisa Jolicoeur says she has mixed emotions about leaving. “I don’t think the facility necessarily makes for better education. Obviously, [the new high school] makes a more pleasant environment if you are going to spend eight hours a day there,” said Jolicoeur.
“The facility itself doesn’t create the spirit. The spirit has to come from within,” added Jolicoeur.
“Although we have some toilets that don’t work, or locker rooms with junk in them, I still think we definitely make the most out of what we have in the school. It wasn’t ideal but I’m glad to get a chance to be in the old building before they tear it down,” said Koster.
As a member of the planning board, the school dance in the cafeteria holds a special place for Koster. “We had the freshman formal, the last dance in the school building. It’s cool to see it when you are not just there eating lunch,” added Koster.
Maron says planning events in the new gym or the new cafeteria would be more welcoming than in the current high school. “For the sophomore semi, the cafeteria isn’t necessarily an ideal location. At the new school, we will have some tools that we can definitely use to our advantage. New scenery is going to be refreshing for a lot of people,” said Maron.
Ms. Jolicoeur says she hopes the building has more space for the community. “If we want to have things during the day, we only have a couple of spaces to do that, the auditorium, the cafeteria, etc. It would be really nice to be able to have more spaces to bring larger groups together if we want to do workshops or combine classes,” said Jolicoeur.
Sharon Middle School eighth grader Shalini David says that he would love to see different places in the new school to meet after school for clubs or studying. “The new high school shouldn’t just be a clean building but also a good community. To me, school spirit and the opportunity to make changes in Sharon Middle is definitely something I would like to see continue at Sharon High,” said David.
Sharon Middle school eighth grader Emma Liu says that this new renovation will provide an exciting adventure for all students attending the school.“I hope that along with a clean and “polished” look, the new SHS will also include many different unique features that we haven’t gotten to see in the past,” said Liu.
“Additionally, any visual art that really “pops out” with vibrant colors would be amazing, as I really think it would help SHS seem like a place where you can be creative with your ideas,” added Liu.
Sharon eight-grader Ava Vo says she hopes the new school will be built to accommodate schedules and help cut time in between classes. “With four grades in one building, I’m hoping foot traffic will be more manageable with the setup,” said Vo.
“Hopefully, the auditorium will have good acoustics to enhance and help theater performances,” added Vo.
“I also hope Sharon has implemented some extra safety measures safe from any possible chaos and disruptions and that the students’ and faculties’ safety is put first. I saw a blueprint a while ago and saw a recreational lobby center so overall, I’m very excited to see the final product!” said Vo.
“When we move in in the fall, the student council usually does a freshman orientation, so I hope that student council members have a chance to go in and check out the building. Then, we can lead the younger students through it as well. That is something I’m looking forward to,” said Jolicoeur.
Koster says changing the environment is something we will all have to do together. “It’s not going to be easy. It’s going to be new for everyone. We are so lucky to have a new beautiful building being built, and it’s definitely sad to see the old building go,” added Koster.
“People have parents that go to [SHS], and thousands of people go there before us,” Koster added. “It’s definitely bittersweet to be leaving a building that you know we have been such a big part of.”
Ms. Jolicoeur says watching the old building be demolished will be overwhelming. “We have been watching them build [the new building]. So when we settle in the new school, we are going to watch them disassemble it and then rebuild the fields.”
“I don’t know what that’s going to look like, I can’t even imagine,” she added.
“We might move to a school where something isn’t quite functional,” Jolicoeur said. “It’s a pretty tight timeline. But I’m sure we will overcome it.”