The Portland School Board unanimously approved the master plans for the rebuilt Faubion PK-8 School, in partnership with Concordia University.
“It’s incredibly exciting and we are all thrilled to see this unique partnership move forward,” said Board Director Ruth Adkins after the April 16 vote. PPS staff, Boora Architects and Concordia University presented the master plan for the proposed rebuild. The Faubion rebuild and modernization, along with Franklin, Grant and Roosevelt high schools, will be paid for with the eight-year, $482 million PPS School Building Improvement Bond.
Construction at Faubion is slated to begin in summer 2016 and planned for completion summer 2017.
The new Faubion is being developed as part of a unique partnership with Concordia, which will help raise part of the funding for the project. The bond is funding the construction of the new PK-8 school while Concordia’s contributions from fundraising will bring additional services and innovative pre-kindergarten and other learning opportunities to the school.
The master plan shows the replacement of Faubion with an enhanced PK-8 school on the same site. The plans include a new College of Education facility for Concordia University, along with associated community service components, such as an early childhood education facility and a health and wellness center.
The rebuilt Faubion PK-8 will become the heartbeat of the neighborhood, offering wrap-around services to Faubion families. A portion of the combined building and access will be on contiguous Concordia property.
Community helped develop plans
The plans were developed over the last several months with significant community support and involvement. Present and future Faubion families, the Faubion Design Advisory Group (DAG), PPS and Concordia staff, potential wrap-around service providers, neighboring St. Michael’s Church and community members were all involved in developing the plan.
Concordia and Faubion have collaborated as neighbors for 63 years. During this time, many Concordia education students have completed a part of their field experience at Faubion.
Concordia provides over 200 student volunteers each semester to help tutor and mentor Faubion students in the classrooms, and teach in the SUN after-school program. Concordia student nurses also support Faubion’s health and wellness efforts. Working with Faubion teachers, Concordia students have helped improve learning outcomes for Faubion students in reading, math and science and dramatically reduced playground discipline referrals.
“In just a few short years, Faubion and Concordia University students will eagerly cross the threshold into a one-of-a-kind, distinguished school,” said LaShawn Lee, principal of Faubion PK-8. “Our partnership is an exquisite example of a community bound together to enhance the lives of children and families through academics, health, nutrition, and safety.”
Collaboration produces better outcomes for kids
Gary Withers, Concordia University chief strategic relations officer, agrees. “We know we can accomplish more and better educational outcomes if we work together. Our collective vision through ‘3 to PhD’ is to create safer, healthier, and more educated communities.”
Board member Matt Morton is looking forward to the implementation of the partnership plan and where it might lead. “There is a degree of innovation in this project that I’m excited about. I want to see where we can take this and if it’s replicable and scalable in other schools in the District.”
The Faubion Replacement project moves to the schematic design phase. Schematic design is a more detailed study of the layout of educational spaces and common areas. Public design workshops and Design Advisory Group meetings will continue as the project progresses forward in the coming months.