Babcock Middle School welcomes its first students as the school year begins Monday morning.

This is the grand opening of a new high school located at 43301 Cypress Parkway in Charlotte County that will focus on a holistic learning environment. Babcock schools open two days early other school districts like Lee and Collier counties.

Until now, there was only Babcock School, a K-8 school. The new high school is for grades 9-12, but 12th grade won’t be added until the next school year, which begins in 2023. District officials say both Babcock Neighborhood School and Babcock High School will focus on the greenSTEAM education program, which combines science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics.

In addition to the new high school, developer Kitson and Partners said, a 40,000-square-foot recreation center will be added, which includes the school’s cafeteria and gymnasium. It will also serve as an emergency storm shelter and a venue for school and community events. The recreation center is designed for more than 1,300 people.

The bell will ring at 8 a.m. and WINK News will be live as parents drop off their children for the first day of school.

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