FSPS plans to open its multi-million-dollar PIC for the 2021-22 school year

Fort Smith, AR – According to the statement, the Peak Innovation Center will be a regional career and technology center with a focus on instructional strategies within the STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) disciplines.

And, after renovations, the facility will be 160,000 sq. ft. with the availability for future expansion on its 17 acres, the school district said. Phase One learning space will be approximately 80,000 sq. ft. with a facility and equipment investment of $20 million, according to the FSPS.

Fort Smith-based Turn Key Construction Management is the project’s general contractor. The cost of the building effort is anticipated be $8.4 million.

This amazing project funded due to Fort Smith voters approving a school millage increase in 2018, the first in 31 years, which raised the rate in the city from 36.5 mills to 42 mills. The new rate is expected to raise $120.8 million, $35 million of which will go toward district-wide safety improvements.

The millage plan also included a new $13.7 million career and technology center, now the Peak Innovation Center, featuring specialized lab spaces and classrooms for courses in healthcare, information technology and advanced manufacturing.

Kyle Parker, president and CEO of Fort Smith-based Arkansas Colleges of Health Education, was instrumental in acquiring the building donation for the school district.

Fort Smith Public Schools administrators said:

“Because of community support, the Peak Innovation Center will deliver cutting-edge career and technology education for high school students across 22 regional school districts, as well as district-specific visual arts programming.Programming will provide students access to state-of-the-art equipment and industry exposure. Students will receive a direct connection to career opportunities in western Arkansas, and those who successfully complete these courses have the ability to earn a competitive salary upon high school graduation and will be better prepared to thrive in college.”

Students attending the facility will receive a hands-on approach to career-focused curriculum and programming taught by UAFS faculty as an extension of the Western Arkansas Technical Center.

Phase One programs will include advanced manufacturing, information technology and healthcare sciences while serving the following school districts: Alma, Arkansas Connections Academy, Arkansas Virtual Academy, Booneville, Cedarville, Charleston, County Line, Fort Smith Public Schools, Future School of Fort Smith, Greenwood, Hackett, Johnson County, Westside, Lavaca, Magazine, Mansfield, Mountainburg, Mulberry/Pleasant View, Ozark, Paris, Scranton and Van Buren.

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