Community Website Launched to Keep West Valley Community Updated on John S. McCain III Elementary School
By Alison Bailin -
Wednesday Mar 24, 2021
Since its groundbreaking in November 2020, all eyes have been on the construction of John S. McCain III Elementary School, which is located near Miller and Lower Buckeye Roads in the Buckeye School District and set to be complete in summer 2021. To ensure the public at large and especially members of the nearby neighborhoods across the West Valley always have access to the latest news on the school as it moves closer to completion, a community website has been launched for the public and is now live at jmes.chasse.us.
“The site will offer regular updates and imagery as well as virtual tours, spotlights on the construction team, important community announcements and more,” says Barry Chasse, founder of McCain Elementary School’s general contractor CHASSE Building Team.
This state-of-the-art school has been designed by the Orcutt Winslow Architecture Firm, and will be located on land by the Walton Group. John S. McCain III Elementary will feature a cutting-edge C-STEM (Coding, Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) based curriculum that will also uniquely balance critical thinking, humanities through history, and social skills. When complete, John S. McCain III Elementary will feature more 20 classrooms – called Learning Centers – in addition to a gymnasium, a kitchen and food court, flex spaces and a band/music room. These spaces are anchored by multiple learning and reading commons spaces, outdoor play areas and administrative space.
According to Chasse, to ensure John S. McCain III Elementary is a school worthy of its name, special efforts were made to determine how the themes of the Senator’s life should be meaningfully integrated into the fabric of the school.
Through a collaborative group process with the design team and district leadership teams, the legacy of leadership, courage, service, civility and resilience left by Senator McCain was considered self-evident.
A steering committee was formed to provide community engagement in the development of the school. During the design process, the construction team collected ideas for organizing the site and arranging learning spaces from community members, school district staff, and steering committee members.
“During the phase, district leadership and members of the steering committee also visited schools throughout the state to assess best practices and establish design criteria to guide the design of the school,” says Chasse. “Just as John McCain helped elevate our nation, the resulting school that will be unveiled this summer will help students take flight and soar to new heights.”
According to Chasse, the design of the school focuses on elevating students academically, socially and emotionally. With strong foundations in both social and academic development, the facility operates on an axis of academic and social skills kept in careful balance by a hierarchy of spaces. Focusing on the student and building outward, the school is composed of a variety of spaces with movable walls, indoor and outdoor that open to each other and strengthen one another.
“John often spoke of how important teachers were to him becoming who he was. He was a guy that sometimes wasn’t always on the right path and would get himself in trouble, but teachers always helped guide him back,” said Cindy McCain when talking about how special the project would be to Sen. McCain during its groundbreaking in recent months.