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New Sandy Hook School opens on site of Newtown shooting

New Sandy Hook School opens on site of Newtown shooting

Christian Science Monitor

Nearly four years after tragedy struck Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., the school is opening its doors to students again. But those doors, like the rest of the building, look a little different today than they did in 2012, when a shooting rampage killed 20 first-graders and six educators.

A new elementary school opened Monday in Newtown, replacing the Sandy Hook school that was torn down after the shooting. The replacement facility, which cost $50 million to build, stands on the same property as the old school, but bears little resemblance to its predecessor. The new building features three courtyards, study spaces designed to look like treehouses, and a moat-like rain garden, and was inspired by the "regenerative, restorative and healing elements of nature," according to the project website.

Newtown residents voted to tear down the old school and construct a new one after the 2012 shooting.

"They don't want to go back, and vehemently so. For some, it was just too overwhelming to go into that space again without becoming unhinged," local psychiatrist John Woodall told NPR in 2013. "You can't ask people to bear something that is, for them, unbearable."

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