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Time was, schools were simpler structures. In addition to the requisite classrooms, offices, cafeteria and gymnasium, they might have a science lab, woodworking shop, maybe even a music room. When a new school had to be built, the school board found a general contractor to oversee construction and hire subcontractors.
This fall, however, Montgomery Blair High School will demonstrate how dramatically times have changed. Billed as a "super school," Blair is the largest K-12 school ever built in Montgomery County. Comprising 382,000 square feet, it will accommodate 2,800 students and support a computer science and communication arts magnet program. It boasts valuable enhancements to help educate and build student skills, including:
* A spacious entrance with an open atrium and computer "docking stations" lining the walls.
* An interactive central classroom linking multimedia capabilities, including cable access television and radio stations.
* Three television studios and eight editing rooms.
* A darkroom with 30 workstations.
Today, educational facilities must be constructed to house and power the complex array of technology that is integral to learning. At the same time, construction costs have soared; school board staffs and …