Welcome to the Hillside and Mitchell Planning Information Page
Planning for appropriate school space for Needham's students continues to be a priority for the School Committee. Over the last decade the Needham community has generously supported renovations and new school construction projects at three of the elementary schools, Pollard Middle School, and at Needham High School. In addition, the community completely renovated the High Rock Elementary School and turned it into a new 6th grade center. And even while we wrap up a major repair project at Newman we are looking ahead to the renovation and/or replacement of the Hillside and Mitchell elementary schools. All of this work is consistent with the town's Capital Plan and reflects the work of the 2005 Town wide Facilities Master Plan.
The Permanent Public Building Committee (PPBC) and the School Committee hired the architectural firm Dore and Whittier to study and analyze the options for renovating and/or replacing Hillside and Mitchell. The School Committee and PPBC commissioned the study in anticipation of submitting a request to the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) for further study and possible state funding of a renovation project for both schools.
The School Committee established several conditions they asked the architects to consider in their planning. Among them:
- Elementary school size between 400 and 500 is optimum.
- Neighborhood based schools reduce transportation costs and build a sense of community and ownership.
- A full day Kindergarten option is important.
- Minimize redistricting.
- Avoid costly and unreimburseable features like temporary classrooms to house students while construction is underway.
Dore and Whittier completed the Hillside and Mitchell Prefeasibility Report in July 2012 and now the Needham School Committee, in partnership with other town boards and the entire community, must consider appropriate next steps to ensure Hillside and Mitchell meet the needs of the next generation of students. You may send comments or questions to the School Committee at: email@example.com .
Please use this website to find information about the planning process and to learn more about the needs at both schools.