Until 2005, the whole of the School of Tomorrow was located in a crowded and sub-standard building in the Vake district of Tbilisi. A new facility, located in Mziuri Park, is being built in stages, and - as of October 2007 - accommodates the entire school. Read on for more information.
The Mziuri Facility
The School has aquired a long-term lease on a piece of land in Mziuri Park, which lies alongside Chavchavadze Street, where the university is located. There was already one building on the land - an octagonal hippodrome, which had fallen into disrepair. Plans for a new school facility were drawn up, incorporating the hippodrome into the facility.
Under Earl Treat's direction, the new facility was designed to allow construction in phases, with parts of the school becoming functional before the entire facility is complete. The foundations for the whole facility have been constructed. At this time, a single-story building, the second wing of which was completed in 2007, accommodates the entire student body of the School of Tomorrow. Here is a picture of it:
Note the conical roof of the "octagon" in the center of the building.
Here is the view from an apartment building above the school:
A larger version of this picture is available here.
This building contains a number of learning centers (classrooms) for both English and Georgian curricula, two lunch rooms and administrative offices. One of the learning centers has been equipped as a computer lab, with desktop PCs and a server. Currently, the computer lab is used to teach computing skills. In the future, Mark IV Harvest plans to add language-learning software, which would not only enhance the program for the school's students, but would also open the door to evening classes for the public, which would generate extra revenue for the school.
The hippodrome is used as a gymnasium, though its equipment is fairly basic. The plans for the facility call for a purpose-built gymnasium, as you'll see below.
Plans for the Mziuri facility
|The existing building marks the first and second phases of construction, with single-story structures on the west and north wings of the site, including a main entrance lobby and incorporating the existing octagon. This provides enough learning centers to accommodate the entire student body of the school of tomorrow|
|The next phase would be the construction of a gymnasium at the north end of the north wing. The expected cost for the gymnasium, its equipment and heating would be around $250,000 USD.|
|With the gymnasium built, the octagon can be re-purposed. It will be divided into two stories to provide a canteen and a small auditorium. In addition, a set of workshops will be built around the south side of the octagon, to provide instruction in woodworking, metalworking, etc. Expected cost for this phase: $250,000 USD.|
|Finally, second and third stories will be built onto the existing structure to provide further learning centers and accommodations for visiting teachers. Expected cost: $400,000 USD.|
Where is the Mziuri facility?
Google Maps has a satellite image of the new facility here. You can see the octagonal hippodrome and the first wing with its sheet steel roof. The red rectangle at the top of the school is the artificial soccer field that's sitting on the foundation for the future gymnasium. You can also see the new road that's been built just north of the school. Use the scale to zoom out, and drag the image around to explore the rest of Tbilisi.