On April 22, the community celebrated the long-awaited grand opening of the modernized Sánchez Elementary school, made possible through the 2017 Bond program. The event featured remarks from Sánchez Principal Azucena Garcia, district leadership, former teachers and alumni, students, and a Sánchez family member. The public also enjoyed a parade and performance by Eastside Early College High School to open the ceremony.
Earth Day 2022 proved to be a fitting backdrop to celebrate the rebirth of two AISD elementary schools – the early Sánchez Elementary and Metz Elementary – into a unified Sánchez Elementary. In addition to a tree planting, Shannon Sprague, great-granddaughter of the school’s namesake George I. Sánchez, spoke before introducing a Sand Ceremony to represent the coming together of the two schools.
One Sánchez Elementary student spoke about how the school accepted her for who she is, giving her speech in both Spanish and then English. Another student told the audience how he loved the school’s “unique design,” but that his favorite thing was that “the school is public so anyone can go to it.”
With a capacity of 580, the modernized Sánchez campus features flexible, modernized spaces, with connections to communal gathering places like the dining area and the library. The classroom spaces provide flexibility so that students can do multiple activities and work in small or large groups.
Constructed by Flintco and designed by McKinney York Architects, the campus was built with sustainability in mind, allowing for increased daylight while reducing heat gain, reducing overall energy use, and providing the campus with sensory gardens and native plants. Entrances on two sides of the building welcome the community to its school.
Check out the photos from the grand opening. A recording of the celebration is also available here.
Congratulations to Sánchez Elementary and the East Austin community!