Source: San Diego Jewish World
The rebuilt, rocket-resistant Sha'ar Hanegev elementary school has been reopened in the same compound it had occupied for a half century. Ceremonies inaugurating the seven-building complex on Thursday, November 5, 2009, marked the end of the elementary school's two-year exile from Sha'ar Hanegev's educational campus -- a move that had been forced by Kassam missiles fired by Hamas terrorists from the nearby Gaza Strip.
Until now, students had been attending classes in crowded caravan trailers set up temporarily in Kibbutz Ruhama, beyond the range of the missiles. Now that the school has been built in a manner able to withstand explosions from falling missiles, authorities consider it safe enough for children in Grades 1 through 6 to resume their studies there. The rebuilt school is located in the educational complex of the Sha'ar Hanegev municipality, adjacent to Sapir College.
Each of the six grades has its own fortified building containing three classrooms, a teacher's room, a computer classroom, hallway and restrooms. The seventh building is for the administration.
Keeping students of the same grade together--with their teachers and computer facility in the same building -- facilitates a more relaxed atmosphere because there is no need for students to exit their building, and possibly risk exposure to falling missiles, during the school day.
A school yard for outdoor activities was built in such a way as to provide ready access to shelters for the students in the event of Israeli sirens announcing incoming missiles. Israelis in the Sha'ar Hanegev area have become accustomed to taking shelter within 15 seconds of hearing such "Red Alerts."