The Fulton County Schools district has taken another step closer to establishing its first science, technology, engineering and math (STEM)-focused high school in north Fulton.

The new school will be located at the old Milton High School site near downtown Alpharetta, where the current Independence High School sits.

“The latest turn of events is we will have the new Independence High School site in Roswell ready to welcome students, teachers and staff that were at the old Milton site in about six weeks,” said Doug Carey, the district’s director of capital planning. “We are anticipating that Independence High School students can move into the new structure after winter break.”

At its Nov. 17 meeting at Asa Hilliard Elementary School in East Point, the Fulton Board of Education approved by a 7-0 vote the demolition of the old Milton High campus, which will likely begin in January.

However, according to Susan Hale, a district spokeswoman, a “final farewell” to the old Milton High structure, before demolition begins, is scheduled for Dec. 9 from 2 to 4 p.m.

“We are having this final farewell so that teachers, students and community members can walk through the old Milton structure one last time before it is torn down,” she said.

At the school board meeting, it approved Complete Demolition Services to conduct the demolition. Its bid of, $1.04 million was determined to be the best value for the county, said the district’s chief operations officer, Patrick Burke.

The new STEM-focused school is scheduled to open in 2020 and will concentrate on college- and career-focused curricula.

The design of the new structures is progressing, Carey said, with plans for the design of the building and site plans, “looking much as they did in the school system’s first public display of those plans after the board approved them last August.”

The building plans for the STEM school show a three-structured wing design for the programs of healthcare sciences, engineering and information technology, Hale said.

“The three-story healthcare sciences and information technology spaces flank the main entry to the facility, while a one-story engineering wing allows for larger laboratories to have direct access to outdoor classroom space.” she said.

Hale said the district plans to build a similar STEM campus in south Fulton but is still working out ideas on its visioning, programs and location.

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