Lanier Co. Elementary School opens Monday - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Lanier Co. Elementary School opens Monday

By Jade Bulecza - bio | email

VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) - A new school opens Monday for 400 Lanier County students.

The school is built to accomodate future population growth and is equipped with interactive technology in the classrooms.

Through the years, Lanier County Primary School became crammed for space. To solve this problem, the school board made plans for a new elementary school three years ago.

"Now we have some room to move around, plenty of storage space," said Sena Pike, math teacher. "I've been teaching for 10 years and this is the first time I've had some empty cabinets so that's nice."

The primary school used to be pre-k through fifth grade. However, the new Lanier County Elementary School is housing three of those grades, third through fifth.

"It's sized for growth," said Gene Culpepper, Lanier County Elementary Principal. "When they built this building, they made sure it was not going to be outgrown."

Some of the common areas of the school can hold 1000 students. The building costs $12.5 million and was paid for by local funds sales tax  money.

"The community, I think, is very proud of this new building and it'll serve them for many years to come," said Keith Humphrey, Lanier County Schools Superintendent.

The principal says the influx of the population comes from Moody Air Force Base and residential growth on the northwest side of Lanier County.

Before the school was built third graders were learning in portable buildings.

The superintendent says the new school is safer for students and also gives them a better learning experience.

Each classroom has six computers and a smart board.

"Kids are so into computers anyway that that's where they want to be," said Pike. "They want to be on a computer. They're interested in that."

The construction of the school took about a year. The doors will open for students on Monday. Lanier County now has four schools in its system.

Principal Culpepper says being in a small community has many benefits. Principal, teachers, and students can all work together from pre-k all the way to twelfth grade.

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