ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Bernalillo High School students are starting off the year in a new high-tech building.
Classrooms are equipped with 70-inch interactive screens called Mondopads. Incoming freshmen will also be issued laptops to test out a paperless concept for assignments.
"Times are changing, and when we see how students are learning and what kids are exposed to with technology, education has to meet those needs," said Bernalillo High School Principal Keith Cowan.
Students working on credit recovery can also take online classes in one of the many computer labs throughout the campus.
Cowan said the school is also utilizing technology to keep the campus safe.
"We have a security room now. All of our doors lock down, and when you come into the main entrance, you have to get buzzed in through our receptionist," said Cowan.
The building is energy efficient, which is expected to save money on maintenance costs.
There is space on campus for a cyber café that Cowan said students will help run.
"When we were here for registration, I was thinking, 'Wow, this reminds me of CNM,'" said senior Sabrina Marie Long about her first impression of the building.
Cowan said part of the planning process for the new building included plans to prepare students for what they will experience in college and in the real world.
Most of the old buildings on campus have been demolished to make room for a second new building that will house career-readiness programs like culinary arts, auto shop, construction and welding.
The second phase of construction is expected to be complete by next year.