Contact: Adam Joseph
June 13, 2012
After years of advocating, planning, and work, Senate President Donald E. Williams (D- Brooklyn) today celebrated the breaking of ground on two projects he championed and guided through state approval. Shovels were put into the ground at both Harvard H. Ellis Technical High School and Quinebaug Valley Middle College.
When previous administration attempted to cancel the Ellis Tech project, Senator Williams lead the fight to fund the improvements.
“This is a great day for the students in Northeast Connecticut and it is a great day for the employers of Northeast Connecticut, said Senator Williams. “Our Vo-Tech High Schools represent one of the original “school choice” options for Connecticut students. Students come to Ellis Tech because they want to be here. Today marks the day when we will be giving those students a better reason to choose Ellis Tech.”
The project, which is expected to be complete in 2015, will have nearly 70,000 square feet of new space. The school will also be able to accommodate more students than the approximately 650 who currently attend.
“After nearly a decade of hard work and teamwork, students, faculty and staff will finally get the building they deserve,” said Senator Williams. “It will be a building they can be proud of and a building that will be capable of new and expanded programs.”
Among the improvements is a new gym with a 1,000-person capacity. There will also be a lighted sports field with press box, bleachers and handicapped access point. The former aircraft maintenance hangar at Ellis is being converted into an upgraded auto repair shop. A bus and storage building is also being erected. A culinary arts classroom with a teaching kitchen will be added and the hairdressing program will move to a larger space.
The classrooms will have smartboards along with new computer labs and new ventilation system.
The project is designed to support a population of 792 students in grades 9 through 12, plus the faculty and staff. This project will create over 1,000 jobs for the Danielson area. The project is being administered by the state Department of Construction Services.
Williams also celebrated the expansion of Quinebaug Valley Middle College, an innovative educational option offering non-traditional learners in grades 10-12 the opportunity to attend classes on the Quinebaug Valley Community College (QVCC) campus in Danielson, while they complete their high school education.
This project will ensure that students have their own space and important new resources to succeed in this environment. It will also allow the middle college to expand to full capacity serving students who choose to attend.
“The Quinebaug Valley Middle College High School is a unique opportunity for students in Northeast Connecticut,” said Senator Williams. Giving students the exposure to college classes helps create a college going culture where higher education is the expectation rather than the exception.”
Added Senator Williams: “This was truly a team effort and I am confident that under President Tomlin’s leadership this project will be a great resource to the students in the quiet corner.”
When completed in December 2013, the project will create new spaces that will house administrative and faculty office areas, general classrooms, small group teaching spaces, science lab and prep rooms, an art room, music room, a half gymnasium, fitness room, health office and mechanical rooms. The project will also renovate and expand the existing Quinebaug Valley Community College cafeteria/kitchen and library.
(for both senators)
Legislative Office Building
Hartford, CT 06106-1591
See more news releases by Senator Williams.
See more news releases by Senator Looney.