By Katie Dahlstrom
Herald Staff Writer
After more than two years of work, the Camanche Middle School enhancement is complete, giving the students, staff and community a renewed sense of pride in the building.
“We’re very pleased with the outcome,” Camanche Superintendent Tom Parker said. “We really believe we have the outcome that will serve our students now and into the future.”
In addition to the enhancements, the school is now designated by a new sign that was donated by Camanche student councils from 2006 to 2012. The electric sign allows the school to display messages and increase communications with the community, Parker said.
To celebrate the building enhancements and the new sign, city officials, members of the community, past and present student council members and school officials, along with members of the Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce gathered for a ribbon cutting ceremony on Friday afternoon.
Following the ribbon cutting, the school held its regular pride assembly. Camanche Middle School principal Justin Shaffer shared some history of the building, which was built in 1959 for $480,000.
The building was dedicated as the junior and senior high school in May 1960. Vernon Truemper, who was the school board president in 1960, attended the ceremony on Friday. Former middle school principal and coach Gary Cross also attended.
“We really wanted to celebrate our present and where we see our future, but also touch base with our past,” Parker said. “The community made this possible.”
Shaffer shared his excitement regarding the enhancements during the assembly.
“On top of celebrating the new building, we also added the newest and most fancy sign in Camanche,” Shaffer said to the gym full of excited students.
The project was started in June 2010 and was completed this fall. In addition to the geothermal heating and cooling system and the new sign, the enhancement also included updating and moving the middle school office, putting in a new science lab and expanding the library and cafeteria at the middle school.
The library was extended 20 to 25 percent and the cafeteria was extended about 15 to 20 percent and got new energy efficient windows to make up for the lack of natural light.