Progress & Industry: Brandon Valley upgrades turf, technology and space

By: 
Jamie Hult, Staff writer
Brandon Valley High School’s new turf field hosts the Lynx soccer and football teams and the Marching Lynx. Jill Meier/File photo 

When Brandon Valley embarked on the 2018-19 school year, the high school was fully equipped in case of fire, middle-schoolers received new laptops and the Lynx gained a new playing field.
A remodel of the former high school office into three classrooms allowed the school district to finish a phased installation of fire sprinklers.
The last of the sprinklers are in the ceilings and walls of the remodeled east side of the high school. Three general classrooms have been added in that space, along with the school’s information technology hub. 
In addition to upgrades to playgrounds, roofs and the Valley Springs Elementary library and revamping science and Family and Consumer Sciences classrooms at the high school, the Brandon Valley School District invested $460,000 in 730 Hewlett Packard laptop computers for each seventh- and eighth-grader.
“What we’re working to do is give teachers and students the tools and resources to stay engaged, with the hope and plan that increased engagement increases achievement,” Superintendent Dr. Jarod Larson said.  
The most visible improvement throughout the seven-school building district was rolled out in late July – an artificial turf playing field.
The school board awarded the turf bid at just under $1 million in February, making Brandon Valley one of the last schools in the Metro Conference to switch to a synthetic playing field.
The field hosts not only football and soccer, but also the Marching Lynx and physical education classes. 
The $983,470 turf project is the last of major upgrades to be completed at the stadium over the last five years. New lights, track, restrooms and concession stand, crow’s nest and new pits for the long and triple jumps and pole vault were completed over the last few years.
Coming later this year, the Brandon Valley Booster Club announced that a new scoreboard with video capabilities will be in place at the stadium. Boosters got a significant donation from Sanford Health, have plugged away fundraising dollars for the scoreboard, andlast week held a meeting for potential corporate sponsors.

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