In groundbreaking news, Pace Academy has announced that plans for the new Upper School building have been terminated due to lack of funding. Headmaster Fred Assaf said, “It’s incredibly sad that we have to scrap our plans as the whole Pace community was very excited about this project, but there’s just no way at this juncture that this project can happen.” Pace needed to reach a certain undisclosed budget goal by the end of this academic year, but the fundraising efforts have fallen short. Tim Walsh, Board of Trustees chairman, admitted, “We really believed that the Pace community would respond to this with much more gusto and generosity, to be honest.” According to a source who wishes to remain anonymous, Pace needed to raise twice as much money at this point than the school has raised, showing just how far behind the fundraising efforts were. “We came into this project much more confident than we should have been,” said Head of Upper School Mr. Gannon, adding, “our goals need to be more realistic for the future.”
The teachers’ reactions vary. Ms. Smith is ecstatic that there will be no new Upper School. “My room can continue to exist as it is, which is lucky because can you imagine trying to recreate it in the new Upper School?” she asked. Other teachers, however, were not as pleased. “I was looking forward to the new school as I have not enjoyed my time in what is basically the basement of the academic building,” said Mr. Newman. Señora Lewis complained, “I’m tired of having to work in a separate part of the building. I was excited for the improved accessibility of the new building.” The librarians are devastated. Ms. Teague said, “The new library looked like a dream come true.” Ms. Strowd as Director of Admissions is especially angry because she is the one responsible for taking interested families on tours of Pace. “Frankly, it is a little embarrassing going through the Upper School, and the only way I could get through it recently was by emphasizing the plans for the new Upper School that would blow the old one out of the water. Now, I have no excuse for this archaic building.”
Though sophomores might be happy with this new development, younger students are outraged. Sophomore William Rushton said, “It really makes no difference to me. It was either trailers our senior year or the old Upper School, and I’d rather have the old Upper School.” All sophomore Baiza Cherinet had to say on the subject was, “Stinks for the freshmen!” The freshmen did not share the same view, however. Freshman Josh Blank was dejected, saying, “Our senior year was set up to be so perfect, as we would be the first ones to have the new building. Now it’s all ruined.”
The future looks bleak now, but there is hope. Mr. Assaf claimed, “Though the project cannot be completed according to the schedule we had originally set, we do plan on building a new Upper School at some point. Whether or not it happens during my time as Headmaster is another question. This might have to wait a generation or two.” The administration is truly sorry for this shocking development, but they stress that they did everything they could to try to make it happen. It just was not enough.
By James Rushton, News Editor ’12