Olathe middle school students get their first look at new high school

OLATHE, Kan. -- Thousands of metro eighth graders will take a tour of their future high school Wednesday.

The Olathe School District, which has 30,000 students all together, currently has four high schools, but will soon have five with the addition of Olathe West on Santa Fe Street.

The administrative team spent this year hiring faculty and staff, and during Wednesday's tour students will get a chance to meet the new teachers and familiarize themselves with the new classrooms.

"It is a real exciting day for us in Olathe, we are transitioning more than 2,200 eighth graders to our high schools next year, and as you can imagine in a district of 30,000 kids it is quite a challenge," said Jim McMullen, executive director of secondary schools. "And we actually have students from all nine of our middle schools attending each high school."

Three different middle schools will feed into the new high school, which will have mainly freshman and some sophomores.

"In our other for high schools the upperclassman will be the one taking students around," McMullen said. "Today it will be staff here because obviously we do not have upperclassman yet. But our other schools, it allows relationships to be built between the freshman and upperclassman. It also just gets them used to the building, they have assemblies and scavenger hunts, they even have lunch there so all sorts of great stuff."

Wednesday's tour will be the first time all students have toured their school on the same day.