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Leland Elementary School Job
BY SUSAN USHER
Six architects are seeking the job
of designing and overseeing con
struction of a new elementary school
for the growing Leland/North
Brunswick County Board of
F.ducation members spent nearly
three hours last Wednesday night
hearing pitches from three
Wilmington firms and firms based in
Atlanta. Charlotte and Raleigh.
After reviewing the proposals, the
board plans to narrow its choices to
about two firms and begin contract
negotiations, possibly as early as
The project is on a fast track.
"We're in a mode here to move,"
Chairman Donna Baxter told one
presenter. "We're looking for an ar
chitect with a plan already approved
(by state construction and insurance
"We want it to be of top quality."
she added later, "but meet our pock
The school system anticipates
starting construction in the first half
of 1994 and occupying the school
no later than fall 1995.
Initially the board was consider
ing building an 82.0(X)-square-foot
facility to serve 700 students, in
cluding pre-kindergartners, at an es
timated cost of $6.5 million. Last
week, however, Baxter told con
tenders the system is shopping for a
slightly smaller school ? 70.000
square feet to 74, (KK) square feet to
serve 600 to 650 students in grades
If you've wondered how you
could help strengthen or support
West Brunswick High School's aca
demic program, now there's a way.
PTA President Moses Stanley and
the school's Community Involve
ment Committee are inviting inter
ested individuals to join the high
school's reorganized Parent Teacher
Club. The group will serve as a ve
hicle for action by area residents
who are genuinely interested in the
academic welfare of young people
and want to become directly involv
ed in supporting school improve
An organizational meeting will be
held Tuesday. Oct. 12, at 7:30 p.m.
in the school library.
"Graduates of West Brunswick,
retired residents and parents of cur
rent students have so much to offer
in terms of knowledge, expertise and
time that our students can benefit
from," said committee member Rita
l^ewis of the English Department.
How members of the group get
involved with the school, she said,
will be limited "only by our own in
genuity and willingness to work."
Among.the opportunities: serving as
guest speakers for classes, helping
recognize academic achievement by
students, volunteering time as aides
"Possibly the community's invol
vement is at an all-time low because
no one asked for help," said l^ewis.
"We are now asking."
For those unable to attend the
Oct. 12 meeting, more information
is available from Stanley, 2X7-3554
or 287-4447, or from the school,
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kindergarten through five.
As part of consent agreement
reached with the schools, Brunswick
County Commissioners have allo
cated $500,000 in the current local
school budget for acquisition of a
40-acre site, plus engineering and
architectural fees. If the two boards
can agree upon a plan for financing
construction of elementary school
and other needed capital projects be
fore the end of the 1993-94 fiscal
year, the school board will be ad
vanced $365,000 with which to start
The board hasn't ruled out work
ing with its current architect. Boney
Architects of Wilmington, or modi
fying Supply Elementary School as
a prototype for the new school.
But if another company has an
existing plan that can be modified to
meet the needs of the school, com
munity and site more readily or in
expensively. or can start from near
scratch and meet the same deadline,
board members are interested in
those alternatives as well.
Boney & Associates has handled
all recent projects for the system, in
cluding renovation of South
Brunswick High School, design and
construction of Supply Elementary
School, and current design work on
classroom additions to North
Brunswick and West Brunswick
Wednesday night, school board
members heard from:
?Jeff L. Jafan. Prap Group. Atlanta,
Ga.. a full-service engineering and
architectural firm with no prior
school contracts in North Carolina,
approximately 50 Georgia school
projects of $4 million to $5 million
and extensive work for the U.S. mil
itary. Jafari said distance would be
no problem and that the firm is pre
pared "to do whatever it takes" to
meet the school system's schedule
?Don Lee and Jeff Yelton of Lee
Nichols Architects, Charlotte, cited
Northeast Elementary School and
Charlotte Country Day School pro
jects. numerous higher education
and institutional buildings such as
The Friday Center at the University
of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and
Carmichael Gym at N.C. State Uni
versity. The company listens to its
clients, has a reputation for generat
ing few change orders, has varied
experience it can apply to schools
and, said Lee, "We can meet your
schedule, if anyone can."
?David Bradford of George M.
Smart Architects, Raleigh, exhibited
its award-winning design of the
Vance Elementary School, Wake
County. "We're very excited about
this process," said Bradford. "This is
the kind of project we like to do."
?John Sawyer of John Sawyer
Architects, Wilmington, showed
sketches of a 750-student Main
Street design with classroom wings
intersecting at a core resource area
anchored by a media center, with
noiser areas set apart. He has built
few schools, feels his experience
with library construction would be
an asset, wants to move into school
construction, his firm "can be very
competitive" and is strong on com
munication, he said "Nobody wants
this job more than we do."
?Quinn Sweeney and Herb McKim
of BMS Architects of Wilmington
cited the firm's experience designing
75 schools, including Heyward C.
Bellamy Elementary in Wilmington,
which has a cost-efficient thermal
storage and heating/air cooling sys
tem. BMS isn't known for generat
ing change orders, is interested in
energy efficiency and suiting cus
tomers needs, and has staff members
who live in and are familiar with the
county, they said.
?Charles Boney Jr., Boney
Architects, Wilmington, cited the
company's three generations of
school construction experience and
said Supply Elementary School,
"one of the finest buildings" it's
done, is a known quantity and eco
nomical. As a prototype design it
could he given a new exterior,
scaled down and modified to suit the
Leland site for a savings in time and
"The biggest thing is that it
(Supply Elementary) is a happy
building. The children love coming
to school there." said Chairman
The two existing L .eland area
schools that serve elementary
school-age children. Lincoln
Primary (grades pre-K through 3)
and Leland Middle (grades 4
through 8) are at or over capacity
Designed for 720 students, Lincoln
has 659 K-5 students, plus 24 pre
kindergartners on campus, said
Barbara Holt, student information
management system (SIMS) opera
tor. That's down slightly from a high
of 774 in 1991-92.
I x land Middle School serves
867 students this year, said SIMS
operator Ruth Dees, which is down
from a high of 919 in 1991-92.
However, classes are being held on
the stage, multipurpose rooms have
been converted into classrooms and
work areas, and trailers house the
Chapter I reading and academically
gifted resource rooms.
"l"he school board plans to make
both Lincoln and the new facility el
ementary schools serving students
through fifth grade, and to make
Leland Middle a "true" middle
school, housing students in grades
six through eight.
By the year 2000. the Brunswick
County Schools project enrollment
of 11.300, up from approximately
9.000 this year, with much of the
that growth in the northern and
western sections of the county.
TV Summit Encourages Parent Involvement
Parents of Brunswick County stu
dents and others concerned about
public education can participate in a
televised summit at 2:45 p.m.
Sunday in the offices of the Bruns
wick County Board of Education in
The event kicks off the third an
nual Parent Involvement Week ob
served by the county school system
and sponsored by the N.C. Parent
Teacher Association and the state
department of public instruction.
Sunday's participants will gather
for a televised address by Tracy
Bailey, national Teacher of the Year,
and can then call in questions to her.
Call Joseph Butler at 457-5241.
extension 165, or Judy Auman. 754
5088 to confirm your attendance.
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