Sandy Hook Elementary School opens four years after massacre

The new Sandy Hook Elementary School, built to replace the old school that was torn down after the 2012 massacre, has opened.

The school, built on the same land in Newtown, Connecticut, was opened to the public and media on Friday to allow students and teachers a normal opening as possible, according to local officials.

In December 2012, gunman Adam Lanza shot dead 20 children and six teachers in the school, before turning the gun on himself.

The massacre was one of America's worst mass-shootings and reignited the nationwide debate into gun laws.

The school was badly damaged in the 2012 attack. Credit: APTN
Tributes were left outside the school after the shooting in December 2012. Credit: PA
The old school was torn down after the shooting. Credit: APTN

The $50m (£37.8m) replacement is designed in a forest theme, with the aim of being environmentally friendly, conductive to learning and above all, safe.

The new school will serve students from pre-kindergarten through to fourth grade.

Visitors will need to pass through a driveway gate, across a moat-like rain garden, past two police officers and a video monitoring system to get inside.

The communal garden. Credit: Reuters
The entrance to the school is via a moat. Credit: Reuters
Officials unveiled the new school on Friday. Credit: Reuters
The new school was built on the same land. Credit: APTN

In the years after the massacre, Sandy Hook students have attended a school in nearby Monroe.

Sandy Hook will open to students when the new term starts in August.