Middle school groundbreaking kicks off $27.5 million project

Bowling Green community members celebrated the ceremonial groundbreaking for the new middle school on a cold rainy afternoon yesterday.

“There’s an old wives’ tale that rain brings good luck on a wedding day, so hopefully that will translate to groundbreaking,” Superintendent Hugh Caumartin said.

A bond was put on the ballot in order to authorize the building of the new school.

The community passed the bond in 2006 after a second attempt by the board

of education.

“After the first one failed, we asked the community to fill out a survey to see what they thought was necessary for a new school and placed that on the ballot,” board member Ellen Scholl said. “We are happy they agreed.”

The $27.5 million project will begin construction next week.

The new school will be located on the north side of the high school, and the two schools will be connected by

an auditorium.

“Students from both the junior high and high school will have access,” Caumartin said.

The school will be built in pods where each team of 80 to 90 students in seventh and eighth grade will have all classes in one area.

“We’re excited for a facility that supports a great program and a building built specifically for the team concept,” Caumartin said.

The school will also offer the only air conditioning system in the school district.

The design of the school underwent several changes before coming to the final blueprint.

“It is unique because of the sight constraints, so we had a number of design options to stay in between those constraints,” project architect, Jim Price said.

Project manager Kent Buehrer has envisioned the school for some time.

“A few years ago, when I learned of the desire for a school, I began to dream about what the facility could be,” Buehrer said.

Ideas for the design also came from faculty members.

The auditorium will seat 739 guests and serve as the performing arts center.

“The easy work is done and the tough work is beginning, and in 18 months we believe the community will be blessed with the facility,” Buehrer said.

Future students of the school are also looking forward to the end product.

“I’m excited, and it’s cool to go there for the first year of the school,” Crim Elementary student Richard Burbey said.

Other students also showed anticipation for the school.

“I’m excited about having air conditioning and going to a bigger school,” Ridge Elementary student Samantha Garno said. “I want to meet new people.”

Community members, faculty and staff look forward to the new building and the opportunities it will provide.

“We’re just excited to have a building that will meet the needs for middle-aged students,” Mayor John Quinn said.

The community continues to show its support.

“The school system reflects the community it serves,” Caumartin said.