Beach this September.
Nestled on a hillside between Newport Coast Drive and the San Joaquin
Toll Road, the 140,000-square-foot campus will encompass 22 of 30 acres
of agriculturally zoned land owned by the Irvine Company. The remaining
eight acres will create a barrier of coastal sage and a pond between the
school and the toll road.
"They've been very supportive of the project from the beginning, so it
wasn't very difficult," said Karina Hamilton, the school's chief
So far, trustees have raised nearly $34 million toward an estimated
construction cost of about $60 million, with an additional $5 to $8
million expected for start-up costs, said Clint Wilkins, who will head up
the staff at Sage Hill.
The project will be completed in two major phases, the first of which
will be done by September. The second, Hamilton said, should begin in
The first phase, costing $30 million, includes the athletic fields and
four of the seven buildings. The first buildings will be a humanities
building, which will house 28 classrooms, a library with a 150-seat
multimedia lecture hall, a community center and a gymnasium.
Phase II, costing another estimated $30 million, will include a math,
science and technology building, an arts center and an aquatic center.
But the Caillouettes' vision was for more than a nice view and a
They were looking for a strong arts and community-service program on an
intimate campus with a diverse faculty and student body where their
children would have close interaction with teachers.
"[High school] is when they really learn to establish themselves," said
Dori Caillouette. "Kids love to accept challenges and rise to the level."
Part of that challenge needs to be serving the community, she added.
"We need to educate kids that they need to do for others," Caillouette
The Caillouettes also felt that it was essential to their children's
growth for them to be surrounded by a diverse student body.
"Orange County is a diverse community and yet the groups tend to be very
segregated," Caillouette said. "In small intimate classrooms, they learn
a lot about others."