New OPS High School Will Include YMCA, Health Clinic


An artist’s rendering shows Buena Vista High School at 60th and L streets. (DLR Group via OPS)
By 
Derek Noehren
The Daily Record

When Buena Vista High School opens in 2022 it will feature a workout facility and health clinic.

The future Omaha Public Schools building, located at 60th and L streets, has partnered with the YMCA and OneWorld Community Health Centers. The high school will utilize approximately 3,600 square feet of existing space for a wellness center consisting of a YMCA Express and a OneWorld Community Health Centers Clinic.

“The opportunity to welcome both the YMCA and OneWorld at Buena Vista High School reflects our commitment to the health and well-being of the young people we serve and our greater Omaha community,” OPS Superintendent Dr. Cheryl Logan said in a statement.

The YMCA will operate the express center with cardio, strength training, free weights and virtual training. Along with serving the school community, YMCA members will also have access to the facility. The location provides a direct entrance, ensuring YMCA members do not need to access any OPS spaces.

“Through this partnership, we are increasing access to both clinical and preventive health and wellness services,” Chris Tointon, president and CEO of the YMCA of Greater Omaha, said in a statement. “This innovative, integrated approach shows how our team at the Y is using a health equity lens as we develop new programs and invest in communities.”

The YMCA hopes to add youth sports, youth development, exercise, nutrition, weight loss and other programs. The district has also partnered with the YMCA for a facility within the new Westview High School near 156th and Ida streets, which is scheduled to open in August 2022.

The OneWorld School-Based Health Center will be located adjacent to the YMCA with a nurses’ station and behavior health services.

“OneWorld, together with Omaha Public Schools and the YMCA have a vision to inspire academic success through empowering young adults in their wellbeing,” OneWorld CEO Andrea Skolkin said in a statement. “We are excited about the potential within the generation that will attend the high school and assuring optimal opportunities for academic success and well-being which are inextricably tied together.”

The OPS Board of Education approved design and construction plans for the special project during its meeting on Monday. The district will finance the approximately $1 million investment in constructing the space. Construction is scheduled to begin in June 2021 with the facility ready for use by August 2022.

Last month, the OPS School Board approved names, colors and mascots for the two new high schools, along with two new elementary schools.

The elementary schools will be named Pine Elementary, at 10th and Pine streets, and Forest Station Elementary, at Fort Crook and Childs roads in Bellevue.

According to ops.org, Pine Elementary gets its name because of its location on Pine Street and large evergreen trees that will be preserved in the building process. Its colors are green, white and gray and their mascot the Porcupines.

Forest Station’s name comes from its close proximity to Fontenelle Forest and nearby trains. Its colors are dark green, white and tan, and the mascot is the Owls.

Buena Vista name — Spanish for “good view” —  recognizes the beautiful views of South Omaha and adds to the identity of South Omaha and much of the student population. Buena Vista’s colors are black, silver and burgundy, and the mascot is the Bison.

Westview is named in representation of the beautiful view of west Omaha and the West Omaha community. The colors are orange, black and royal blue, and the mascot Wolverines.

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