The dedication was a nice event, with all the typical dignitaries speaking and thanking the appropriate individuals.
Two details stood out to me during the ceremony:
- In 2009, the Pennsylvania Department of Education said the Bear Creek School construction project was the cheapest of all school construction in the Commonwealth, according to school Director Terry Seiders, who is chairman of the school board's Facilities Committee. He said the project cost $115 per square foot; in 2009, the average cost for school construction was $183 per square foot.
- School Board President Jamie Rowley said Bear Creek is the first brand new school, on a new footprint, that the Elizabethtown Area School District has built in 50 years.
In the program handed out yesterday, the district noted some other details:
- The district originally estimated construction at about $23 million, but a favorable construction climate saved nearly $5 million.
- The project is funded through general obligation bonds. The debt, according to the program, has no impact on the district's tax rate because the district has paid off some debt, the difference between construction estimates and actual costs as noted above and favorable interest rates.
- The 153,000-square-foot school has 48 classrooms housing fourth, fifth and sixth graders. It has five science labs, nine small group instruction spaces, two art rooms, a full-sized gym and an auxiliary gym, a food court and cafeteria and an outdoor play area.
- The school has 940 students, 61 teachers, two administrators and 28 support staff.