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Ritchie County Schools officials prep new building pitch

HARRISVILLE — Ritchie County Schools officials are continuing to work towards a goal of new buildings for Creed Collins and Harrisville Elementary schools.

The vision for the two new buildings first came about during the 2019-2020 school year and even though the School Building Authority did not approve funding for the projects last month, superintendent Jim Brown said the school system will try again.

The project proposal will be submitted again this fall for the next SBA awards in December.

“The scope of our project will not change. There’s a possibility of some additional local dollars committed to the project by the board of education,” Brown said.

The two schools were built in the 1960s and Brown said the cost to renovate the buildings is close to what it would be for new facilities.

“These projects are long overdue. They’re two very old elementary schools that desperately need replaced. Our board is fully committed to making that happen,” he said.

Last year, community members approved a $5 million bond but Brown said if the school system does not receive funding from the SBA in December, it is the last opportunity to use the bond funds.

“The window of time is very narrow,” he said.

If funding is approved, the target date for the completion of the elementary schools is 2024.

Candice Black can be reached at cblack@newsandsentinel.com.

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