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Students from Jeff Dravis' high school building class work on soffits along the house this spring. (Anna Erickson / Enterprise)

Completed high school building class three-bedroom home sells for $40,000

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The third house completed by the Park Rapids Area High School building class has been sold.

Due to the economic times, there was only one bid for $35,000, Principal Al Judson said.

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"After consultation with our business manager we decided that was something that would be tough to live with," he said.

The materials invested were about $44,000. The cabinets that the students built were beautiful, Judson said. They were able to get the bidder to increase his bid to $40,000.

It is a classroom expense but the students learn a tremendous amount from it, Judson said.

This year's house had three bedrooms, two bathrooms and a laundry room. It is 52 feet by 28 feet and 1,430 square feet. It is similar to houses constructed by the building class in previous years.

In just two hours a day during the school year, high school students are able to build an entire house.

The Park Rapids Area High School building class, taught by Jeff Dravis, had about 20 students.

"Some take the entire two-hour class for the whole year but some fit in one hour," he said.

Many of the students are hoping to go into the construction field and others just want to learn the trade for a second job or hobby, Dravis said.

In the fall, students really see the progress.

"It goes up so fast at first," Dravis said. "You can see the progress every day."

During the building process, Dravis admits that mistakes are made.

"If they're not making a mistake, they're probably not working hard enough anyway," he said.

By spring, the students were putting in sheet rock, which is a slower process.

Cory Gibson enjoyed being in the class for the full year.

"It's fun to be outside and just learn how to put together a house," he said.

AJ May also enjoys working outside. He and Gibson both enjoyed working on the framing.

The house is constructed just north of the high school. The completed house can be placed on a basement or crawl space, Dravis said.

Before teaching this class in Park Rapids, he taught in Staples. Dravis worked with his dad on construction when he was younger.

"It's fun to see the kids accomplish something," he said.

The students work on most of the construction, except an electrician and a plumber need to come in to do that work.

"We do everything else," Dravis said.

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