ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. (KMOX) – Principal Dr. Craig Hamby has taken to calling his new school the “Taj Mahal on Tesson Ferry”.
On Wednesday nearly 2,000 parents, students and other curious on-lookers got their chance to see why during an open house.
“I love the high ceilings, i think it makes it feel very open,” gushed parent Cami Dairaghi. “Of course, all of the windows are amazing.”
That was certainly part of the design, according to Hamby.
“I just think a lot of natural light just makes the place seem alive,” he explained. “A happier environment, a better climate. I think kids like it as well.”
And certainly there were plenty of kids on the tour who seemed excited by what they saw, even though it was a reminder that classes at Dressel will begin in just two short weeks.
Parents were assured that security was a top priority when the nearly $22 million K-through-5 school was being designed.
“We have 67 security cameras in the building, as opposed to the nine I had at Sappington,” Hamby said, referencing his previous post prior to taking over at Dressel. “No one gets in the building unless we buzz them in, so we can see who’s outside.”
He calls it a state-of-the-art, 21st Century learning facility.
“We don’t have robots rolling down the hall and drones flying or anything like that,” he laughed. “But I’ve been teaching for 21 years and the classroom I started in…this is just leaps and bounds from where that was.”
One of the featured classroom highlights will be something called non-traditional seating, according to Hamby.
He says one student might be sitting on a traditional chair, next to a classmate who’s using a stool or even a yoga ball.
“Not everyone has the same seat and it’s kind of tailored to what’s best for each student,” according to Hamby.
The nearly 100,000 square foot school at 10911 Tesson Ferry was funded by a $35 million bond issue passed by district voters three years ago.
The first day of class at Dressel Elementary will be August 17th.