Menlo Park has a brand new school. On Monday, 300 students moved into their new Laurel School Upper Campus. While they were still sharing their new space with a few construction workers, all appeared to go smoothly.
A weekend of rain delayed the completion of the school's play structure, and their playing field won't be ready until grass grows in this spring, but students appeared to have plenty to do on their blacktop play area and covered outdoor picnic tables.
The newest Menlo Park City School District school serves third- to fifth-graders who had been squeezed onto the Laurel School Lower Campus site since classes opened Sept. 1.
The students are from the Laurel School attendance area. Before the new school was built, students attended Laurel until third grade and then went to Encinal school for fourth and fifth grade.
The public can see the new school on Saturday, Oct. 22, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. The public grand opening will serve double-duty as a celebration of Laurel School winning a National Blue Ribbon Schools award. Laurel School Upper Campus is located at 275 Elliott Drive in Menlo Park's Willows neighborhood.
The new school has 16 classrooms, two STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) labs, a music room, library and a multi-use gym.
The school also has a covered eating area, spaces that can be shared by teachers for collaborative activities, and offices. Outside, the school will have a playground, running track and a baseball and soccer field.
It was built with proceeds of a $23 million bond measure approved by more than 75 percent of the voters in 2013.