Principal Donna Ford cuts the ribbon on the new $14 million Lee County Elementary School Monday. She is flanked on the left by Lee County School Board Chair Sylvia Vann and on the right by LCSS Superintendent Larry Walters.
LEESBURG, Ga. — Lee County officially opened its new Lee County Elementary School Monday as Principal Donna Ford cut the red ribbon on the sparkling $14 million facility.
Inside the building, nearly 800 people, 655 of them third through fifth graders, listened intently as Ford beamed on stage and thanked those who made the new school possible.
“This is a proud moment for our students, their teachers and our community,” Ford said. “I want to give special thanks to our board of education for making this moment possible. People used to grow soybeans and peanuts on this 40-acre plot of land … now we are growing children.”
Lee County School Superintendent Larry Walters was also happy.
“You see 655 children today, but we expect enrollment to climb and continue to grow right along with the Lee County School System,” Walters said.
Marine Corps Logistics Base - Albany Commanding Officer Col. Don Davis said the school was a perfect representation of Lee County.
“While we celebrate the opening of (the school’s) doors, we are also celebrating the opportunities that open along with them,” Davis said. “Education represents the values and fundamentals of this community. I commend Lee County.”
Davis then spoke directly to the children in the room, quoting a passage from Robert Fulghum’s “All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten.”
“These are the things I learned (in school):
- Share everything.
- Play fair.
- Don’t hit people.
- Put things back where you found them.
- Clean up your own mess.
- Don’t take things that aren’t yours.
- Say you’re sorry when you hurt somebody.
- Wash your hands before you eat.
- Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
- Live a balanced life — learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.
- Take a nap every afternoon.
- When you go out in the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands and stick together.
- Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in the Styrofoam cup: the roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that.
- Goldfish and hamsters and white mice and even the little seed in the Styrofoam cup — they all die. So do we.
- And then remember the Dick-and-Jane books and the first word you learned — the biggest word of all — LOOK.
“Everything you need to know is in there somewhere,” Davis said.