The University of Texas Elementary School officially dedicated its new building on Wednesday, Oct. 17, before a crowd of about 150 plus the school’s students, faculty and staff. Melissa Chavez, executive director of UT Elementary spoke along with UT Austin President Bill Powers; Dr. Gregory J. Vincent, vice president for diversity and community engagement; Dr. Ed Sharpe, College of Educational Administration; Pat Oles, chair of the capital campaign committee; Gabi Alejo, parent; Amethyst Rodriguez and Averill Topps, students; and Dr. Mark Gooden, Department of Educational Administration and chair of the UT Elementary Management Board. Students who participate in the UT Strings Project performed beforehand. The highlight came when the students sang the school song, displaying the hook’em horns sign.
Those familar with UT Elementary School know the cheerily painted portables have been well loved. But the buildings were in need of repair and the space was inefficient to meet the demands of a demonstration school. For nine years students, faculty, staff and parents have dreamed of a permanent facility.
“You know the saying ‘it takes a village to raise a child,’ that’s what it took to get this building constructed said Chavez. “So many people put in so much of their time, talent and resources to make this happen. It is a tribute to how much people care about this school and completely and truly believe it is important.”
Designed by Studio 8 Architects and built by Zapalac/Reed, the new building houses the administrative offices, gymnasium, cafeteria, demonstration kitchen, library, faculty lounge and classroom space for University of Texas at Austin College of Education professors.