AUBURN, AL (WTVM) - The second bell rings Thursday, August 7, as students at Opelika High School receive help trying to find their new classrooms on the first day of school.
For most students, this is the first time they are seeing the new renovations to OHS that were completed this summer.
"We had one phase open last year, so we utilized part of the building at that point, but this is the first time we've had everyone under one roof, so it was an eye opening experience for most all of the students," explains Principal, Dr. Farrell Seymour.
Opelika High School began the $46 million dollar project in 2012.
Approximately 180,000 square feet of the original 1972 structure was removed and over 200,000 square feet was rebuilt.
There was also the construction and renovation of 87 classrooms designed specifically for career tech such as engineering, science and nursing.
"The wonderful part about being under one roof is the unity of the school. For the first time we have everyone in one building, where we can supervise, but also establish that school spirit as we should," says Seymour.
In addition to renovations, OHS has implemented several new advanced placement courses as part of their curriculum.
There are now several AP classes offered in the different subject areas.
"We've seen an extreme increase in the number of students taking those courses and wanting to get the college credit and just the challenges those courses offer them," explains Kyle Pinckard, Secondary Curriculum Coordinator and Career Tech Education Director.
When you enter through the front doors, you will still find the original "Main Street," a central point for students with a new cafeteria, which then breaks into the new wings of classrooms.
"To have a facility here that reflects learning as it should, is just a testament to this community and our school system," says Seymour.
OHS is hosting an open house Sunday, August 10, from 2-4 PM.