Greensboro Elementary prepares for new construction

From left: Kaytlin Curren, Greensboro Elementary School assistant principal; MaryJo Kerr, assistant principal; Dawn Swann, principal; James Orr, Caroline County Public Schools administrative consultant; Patricia Saelens, superintendent of schools; Caroline County Board of Education President Kathy Dill; George Abner, board of education member; Tolbert Rowe, board vice president; Caroline County Commission President Larry Porter; Commision Vice President Daniel Franklin; Commissioner Wilbur Levengood; Caroline County Sheriff Randy Bounds; Milton Nagel, assistant superintendent of administrative services; Peter Winebrenner, architect, Hord Coplan Macht; Charles Petrick, CCPS supervisor of school construction and maintenance; Eric Shore, architect, Hord Coplan Macht; and Paul Curren, project manager, Whiting-Turner.

GREENSBORO — Caroline County school and government elected officials, administrators, and staff, along with project partners, gathered at the site of the new Greensboro Elementary School Dec. 19 to celebrate the official beginning of construction.

“This is an amazing day for Caroline County,” Superintendent Patricia Saelens said. “We can’t say thank you enough to the Commissioners for supporting this project, and to our board members for their work in moving it along.” She added that she was proud of be a part of this exciting time.

The new school is slated to open for the 2021-2022 school year, and will be close to 94,000 square feet, almost 20,000 square feet larger than the current building. The state rated capacity for the new school is 818 students.

Assistant Superintendent for Administrative Services Milton Nagel observed that it was doubtful anyone in attendance had ever taken part in a groundbreaking for a new Caroline County school, since the last one was over 40 years ago. “The new Greensboro Elementary will be a flagship for Caroline County, an outstanding facility at the center of the local community.”

Nagel recognized project partners from Hord Coplan Macht and Whiting Turner Construction, thanked them for their work to date and expressed his confidence in their ability to see the project through to a successful completion. He also recognized CCPS Supervisor of School Construction and Maintenance Chuck Petrick, who, Nagel stated, “knows how schools work and will live this project.”

Caroline County Commission President Larry Porter said it was an exciting day, and thanked county staff behind the scenes. “The real work is done in the trenches by the chief of staff, the county administrator, and the county finance department who make sure the county has a good bond rating,” he said.

School board President Kathy Dill thanked GES principal Dawn Swann, saying she knows Swann is up to the task of leading a school while construction is on-going. Board vice president Tolbert Rowe stated, “The Commissioners took a huge step in raising the county income tax, an absolute necessity, and took a lot of abuse for it. It shows the relationship between the board members and the county commissioners. We have locked arms with this effort, and are excited to move forward.”

Project architect Peter Winebrenner from Hord Coplan Macht shared that GES would be the first Maryland school that the state approved for ‘right-sizing’, a process that enables classroom space to be designed for the intended use, rather than just the number of students.

Whiting Turner Project Manager Paul Curren thanked everyone involved and stated, “This new school is something we are going to be very proud of; we’re here to get it done.”

Following remarks, elected officials, administrators, school and project staff braved the cold and wind to pick up shovels and officially break ground on the new Greensboro Elementary School.

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