Conference on Higher Education Computing in Kansas
The Joplin Tour will depart from Pittsburg State University and travel to Joplin, entering town on the west side. We will follow the path of destruction across town where participants will be able to view remaining pockets of damage alongside new construction. We will then travel to the temporary Joplin High School and tour their award-winning facility. A panel discussion will be conducted to share the experience their students have when leaving high school and move into higher education. They will also share their vision for construction that has started for a new 400,000 square-foot high school to open in 2014.
On May 22, 2011 a catastrophic EF-5 multiple-vortex tornado hit Joplin, MO. The tornado cleared a path up to 1 mile wide and over 20 miles long through the southern part of the city and outlaying community. Joplin Schools lost many buildings that day and suffered over $150 million dollars worth of damage. 3,000 students lived in the path of destruction and 54% of Joplin students lost their schools during the storm. One of the greatest losses was the Joplin High School. JHS was extensively damaged and was determined to be irreparable and would need to be completely rebuilt.
In the aftermath of the destruction, Joplin Schools began responding immediately. 55 days later, on Aug 17 when school opened the 11th and 12th grade students began attending classes in a converted big-box store in the local shopping mall. An aggressive plan was put in place to create a completely digital school focused on next-generation educational tools. The 21st century design of the temporary facility has received numerous awards for their ingenuity and ambition.