SELLERSBURG, Ind. (WDRB) -- Thousands of students returned to class Thursday at Silver Creek Schools in Sellersburg as construction crews continue work to renovate and expand the campus. 

Over half of the 3,000 students who attend Silver Creek schools were expected to take buses on the first day, but regardless of how they get to school, families will soon have to dodge construction crews. Silver Creek is in the beginning stages of reconfiguring its campus. 

Initial work in Phase 1 of the project consists of leveling the athletic facilities to make room for brand new football, baseball and softball fields. Phase 1 also includes dozens of new classrooms, a science lab, a student union and a media center.

A new cafeteria and kitchen are also planned during Phase 1. 

"It will become a little bit more interesting around here," Silver Creek Superintendent Chad Briggs said. "I had hoped that we'd be beyond where we are now, but it is what it is."

Briggs said there could be some headaches, but the payoff will be worth it so he's asking parents and students to have patience. 

"We're already cramped for space, and that's a big reason why we're doing what we're doing," Briggs said. "That, and we want to upgrade our facilities. But we do ask just for patience. There will be messages going out to students, to parents. And there may be signage. There may be people out here directing traffic."

The new athletics facilities are being tackled first, with the football and baseball fields swapping places and the softball field moving near the other fields. 

Briggs said a bigger chunk of the project will target the high school itself.

"We're going to touch every foot of our high school, basically renovating a lot of areas but also adding square footage as well," he said.

The relocation of the playing fields should be completed in about a year, and work on the high school is expected to wrap up in about three years.

In the meantime, Briggs said teaching students during renovations is a delicate balance. But Principal Al Eckert said the high school has a plan in place.

"We've done a lot of planning for this school year and we're ready to put our plans into action," Eckert said, noting that most of the action will be at the front of the high school.

"Initially at the high school, it will be at the front of the building. The front of the building will be demolished to give them access to the big courtyard where we'll be building our new media center." 

Eckert said temporary classrooms will be used as construction continues, and the staff will make accommodations for students. 

"It's going to be inconvenient," he said. "We may have to add time between classes and open up restrooms we normally open. Some of the students won't have lockers. But other than that, we think we can meet the challenges of the inconveniences pretty well." 

Phase 2 of the project will include additions and renovations to the high school's performing arts building. 

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