Diegueno Middle School’s new classroom building nearly complete

Students will move into their classrooms in the new building at Diegueno Middle School after winter break.
(Karen Billing)

A new classroom building is nearly complete at Diegueno Middle School, providing more space than ever for students’ STEM exploration and learning.

At the campus in the Village Park neighborhood of Encinitas, San Dieguito Union High School District has replaced the 35-year-old building P with a new six-classroom building. The building includes four large general-purpose classrooms, a new computer lab and a maker space.

According to San Dieguito’s Chief Facilities Officer Mike Coy, the building is expected to be completed this fall with the classroom move-in completed over winter break.

Coy said the new 1,100-square-foot computer lab is quite an upgrade from the campus’ existing computer lab which can sometimes feel cramped. Now there will be room for 38 students to work and spread out a bit.

The new 1,400-square-foot maker space for programs such as robotics features a polished floor, retractable extension cord wheels built into the ceiling and a roll-up door for hands-on learning projects to overflow into an outdoor patio.

San Dieguito Union High School District's Prop AA tour got a sneak peek at the new maker space at Diegueno.
(Karen Billing)

At the front of the building, a part of the campus that had been dead space will now be activated with seating walls, gathering spaces for students, new landscaping and trees include a Torrey pine.

Diegueno’s new digs were part of the district’s Prop AA Independent Citizens Oversight Committee’s annual facilities tour on Oct. 15, checking out bond-funded projects going on throughout the district.

The committee and tour-goers also got the chance to see the new arts and humanities building at San Dieguito High School Academy. The new 53,000-square-foot, 33-classroom facility is the second-largest building in the district.

The building includes views out to the ocean from language and art classrooms on the second floor, “The campus has been here for 80 years and never took advantage of that crazy view,” Coy said. “Hopefully the view is a source of inspiration for our young artists.”

The building is also the new home to the special education program Seaside Prep, which moved to San Dieguito from La Costa Canyon High School this year. The therapeutic supports and program-embedded mental health services offered at Seaside Prep help transition students back into the district rather than receive those services outside of the district, according to Deputy Superintendent Mark Miller.

San Dieguito High School Academy's new landscaped frontage along Santa Fe Drive.
(Karen Billing)

On the new building’s frontage along Santa Fe Drive, Executive Director of Planning Services John Addleman said they have worked to soften the landscaping to give it more of a park-like feel along the road—the temporary fences will eventually come down. Keeping in line with the City of Encinitas’ goals to have a more walkable neighborhood on Santa Fe, there is a wide walkway for pedestrians.

The tour through Encinitas included a stop to see Oak Crest Middle School’s new administration building that was completed over the summer. The bus also drove by the new Sunset Educational Center currently under construction on Requeza Street—the new Sunset is likely to be a part of the fall 2020 tour.