Construction Underway On New Building For School That Serves Homeless Children
OKLAHOMA CITY - A school that serves the homeless community in Oklahoma City is getting a new facility.
Positive Tomorrows serves Pre- K through fifth grade homeless children and their families. Right now, they are able to serve about 70 kids in their building. But even just two days into the school year, their classrooms are full.
"We've grown our numbers, but we are at our max," said Positive Tomorrows President Susan Agel. "We can't get any more kids in here if we tried. For example, we're already turning children away this school year. This is our second day of class. We're full. We're turning children and families away, and that's something we don't want to do."
They can't say where their current building is for security reasons, but it's a much smaller space than the new $15 million project going up on the northwest side of OKC.
Their new building, located off 10th and Villa, is still in the works but will be much bigger. It will include areas like a library, kitchen and gym. Some aspects, like open spaces to hang out with friends, could be built in.
"One place they asked for, we don't have a place for light saber fights," said Agel with a smile
Even without dueling rooms, the new building will have security measures that make it safe to let people know where they are located.
With more space and rooms, Agel said the nonprofit is also hoping to expand the age group they serve. Staff are planning to start an early head start program and even take in middle schoolers.
"We're building rooms to go up to 8th grade, " said Agel. "It's gonna take a little while, I think, to fill all those rooms. It's going to be a drastic increase in our operating budget, so we are going to have to figure out how to fund all of that as we move ahead."
The nonprofit's president said this large project is all paid for thanks to community partners and fundraisers.
"This is a dream come true to walk into that new building and see what's going on over there," said Agel.
Staff is hoping to move into the new facility this fall around October or Thanksgiving break.