The new Summit Academy – Xenia high school awaits the arrival of students.

Students of Summit Academy – Xenia high school will be greeted by a new 10,524-square-foot school building to start the 2023-2024 school year. Classes for the school’s 61 ninth- to 12th-grade students begin Friday, Aug. 18.

The new building comes complete with high-polish concrete and vinyl-plank flooring, spacious classrooms, generous windows and green technology. A canopied corridor links the school to Summit Academy – Xenia’s elementary and middle school building, situated catty-corner on the 1694 Pawnee Drive school property, creating a campus feel.

“This is where you want to be,” says Principal Marissa Raux, describing the impression she believes the school will leave on students and staff, present and future.

Pictured from left to right, Summit Academy Director of Facilities Beverly Locke; Summit Academy – Xenia Principal Marissa Raux; Summit Academy Executive Director, School Operations Chris Wheeler; Sean Olson of general contractor, Vancon Inc.; architect Alan Scheer, AIA of Alan Scherr Associates; Jim Fultz, Vancon; and Summit Academy Management CEO John Guyer gathered for a final walk-through of the new Xenia high school on August 1.

In all, the school includes eight classrooms, four offices and a reception area, and an expansive multipurpose room ideal for meetings, team collaboration, conferences, staff professional development and potentially a life skills class for students, according to Raux.

“The entire building feels very much like a school with plenty of room, beautiful freshly painted walls, polished floors and generous windows that allow in natural light and lend a warm feeling to the rooms,” Raux describes. Raux adds that she is eager to tour prospective students and their families as well as future teachers and staff through the building, describing the space as exceedingly conducive to teaching and learning.

Completed in just over six months, the project ran smoothly from start to finish, according to Director of Facilities Beverly Locke. “The working relationship between Sean Olson and Jim Fultz of [contractor] Vancon, and architect Alan Scherr was exceptional. Steady communication, professionalism and the ability to problem-solve kept the project moving forward and running smoothly with minimal setbacks,” Locke says.

Summit Academy – Xenia Assistant Principal Travis Brewer and Principal Marissa Brewer look forward to welcoming their high school students into a new school building this school year.

The expedited construction can be credited to tremendous dedication and diligence on the part of all involved, adds Locke. She explains that as many as 30 tradespeople were in the building at once working simultaneously and Principal Raux and Assistant Principal Travis Brewer worked tirelessly to collaborate on the project with the contractor.

John Guyer, CEO for Summit Academy Management, which operates the school, further credits tremendous cooperation with the City of Xenia’s zoning and building departments to the project’s success. “From our earliest planning stages to completion, the city served as an exceptional partner,” he says.

Guyer adds that the building speaks to Summit Academy’s mission to design, develop and deliver educational opportunities in a therapeutic environment so everyone can learn. “The project came about to achieve this goal amidst the school’s growing enrollment and is certainly expected to surpass that objective,” says Guyer.

A spacious multipurpose room not only awaits staff and students, but an important embellishment, the addition of the Summit Academy logo on its green accent wall.

The original school, which formerly served students in grades K-8, began to expand in 2016 to serve high school students, according to Guyer. Until this year, high school classes were held in modular units.

“We were originally thrilled with the modulars but knew we would outgrow them,” Raux says. “We were ready to take the next leap to where we would be able to grow and accommodate students’ needs through their high school experience.”

Locke adds that the school serves as a model for future expansion by Summit Academy Schools across the state. “This is the expectation we have for our schools, for students, teachers and administrators to feel comfortable and succeed,” Locke says. “It provides a very positive learning environment.”