Meridian's new ninth grade academy opened to students Tuesday. It was paid for with funds from the school bond issue passed almost three years ago.
Ninth grade administrator Victor Hubbard says he can't brag enough on his students.
"They remembered the orientation that was given before the break, so the students knew where to go, where their classes were, and how to go to gym, what time classes start," Hubbard said.
And now for students and teachers it was business as usual.
After months of anticipation and years of planning, the hallways were full. And if the pristine learning environment is indicative of the months ahead, it's going to be a good second half of the year.
Hubbard walked the halls on the first day amazed that the school is finally in its new building.
"I feel extremely good. I owe it to the teachers; they are working hard. I owe it to the students but most importantly the parents," said Hubbard. "Working together they will make sure we'll have a successful year. We can already talk about it because we have results to show."
"It is tremendous; this is an historic event," said Meridian High School principal Vicky Hood. "Most of the high schools around the state are 9-12 so we now have the concept of a high school here, a school within a school. We will still keep them as separated as possible, but they will still get the high school experience here."
Hubbard's goals are pretty straightforward. He said he wants the kids to get a quality education and for academics to soar.
The building is named after the late MHS principal, R.D. Harris. It is 65,000 square feet. The total cost of the building is over $9.5 million. The building has 35 classrooms, as well as a library and a computer lab.