Littleton Public Schools held an official ribbon-cutting ceremony Aug. 29 for the recently unveiled Gudy Gaskill Elementary, though students have been attending the school since mid-August. The school is located at 1603 E. Euclid Ave in Centennial.
A consolidation of students and staff from Highland, Franklin, and Mark Twain elementary, Gudy Gaskill had been under construction since May 2021 and was funded through a 2018 bond measure approved by voters that raised $298 million for a slew of projects. The school cost $38 million to construct, according to LPS spokesperson Diane Leiker.
“We don’t see ourselves as separate communities, we see ourselves as one community as staff," said Gudy Gaskill Principal Leslie Dominick.
The new site is one of several school consolidations by LPS, which has faced years of declining enrollment rates. The school is built on the site of the former Franklin Elementary building and while the other two school buildings — Highland and Mark Twain — still stand, neither serves its original student body.
Highland is slated to house the district's early childhood education center and Mark Twain currently serves students previously enrolled at Ralph Moody Elementary, which the school board voted to close in March 2021.
Those students, along with the community of East Elementary, will eventually attend Little Raven Elementary in fall 2023. District leaders broke ground on that site May 9.
With more than 500 students currently enrolled at Gudy Gaskill, Dominick said they've begun to "establish a strong community” with staff.
“I think that the students have done an amazing job," she said, adding student "still see their relationships from other schools” but also have embraced “new relationships” at Gudy Gaskill.
Named after the American mountaineer dubbed the "Mother of the Colorado Trail," Dominick said she hopes the new elementary will embody that same spirit.
“It’s about being a trailblazer," she said.
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