Bertie Middle School dedicated

Published 12:00 am Monday, August 20, 2007

WINDSOR – Hundreds gathered here Sunday to celebrate the impending opening of the brand-new Bertie Middle School (BMS).

Construction began on the $19 million dollar facility in the early part of 2006 and was completed last month.

Architect Richard Andrews with DKW Architects masterminded the design and Barnhill Construction oversaw its completion, with Project Manager John Smith.

During the dedication ceremony, local officials stood and offered words of wisdom to commemorate the day.

&uot;It is often hard to give up what was home to so many, but we must do so in the name of change and progress,&uot; stated Interim Superintendent of Bertie County Schools (BCS) Dr. Michael Priddy.

He went on, &uot;BMS offers more than just a new facility, it offers hope for a future founded out of its freshness. The synergy created in this new environment will allow the Phoenix (the school’s mascot) to lift our children up to new levels of success.&uot;

Chairman of the Board of Education Rickey Freeman said it is his vision for BCS to provide the best possible education for the students of Bertie County.

According to Freeman, for the first time in history the school system’s teaching positions are 98% filled before the first day of school.

&uot;I want this to be the day that is looked back on as the day BCS began to rise to the top of the educational ladder. We can do it if we all work together,&uot; Freeman said.

Rick Harrell, Chairman of the Bertie County Commissioners, stated, &uot;We’re dedicating this facility today to the children of Bertie County. We need to remember that it’s all about the children as we move forward.&uot;

BMS Principal Sandra Hardy echoed Harrell’s remarks. &uot;To our children, the future, I dedicate this (facility) to them,&uot; she said.

Open house for BMS will be held from 6-8 p.m. on August 23. The school will open for its first day of classes August 27.

Of the project’s total cost, $10.3 million came from state bond money. The Bertie County Commissioners funded an additional $6.5 million by borrowing that amount. Another $1.6 million came from ADM (Average Daily Membership) funds and the rest was acquired from state lottery money and taken out of the capital reserve funds.