THOMASVILLE — The Thomasville City School System broke ground on its last major project funded by the 2007 Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax on Friday at Scott Elementary School.

“We’re very excited and are building toward the future,” Principal Tret Witherspoon said on Tuesday. “Work started this week.”

The Scott project consists of three new classrooms to house pre-kindergarten classes, expansion of administrative offices and a new entrance and drop-off canopy at the front of the school.

Project bids were opened Dec. 11, 2009, with 14 contractors submitting bids.

The Thomasville City Board of Education awarded the contract of $932,500 to the low bidder, Southern Triad Construction Company of Bainbridge, at its December meeting.

“Scott is a great school,” said Chairman Matthew Conyers, who attended the groundbreaking. “We are in the process of adding on to all our schools, but they definitely need more room there, especially for pre-k. We take pride in our schools and want them to look their best.”

Dusty Kornegay, assistant superintendent of administrative services, said this project will allow all pre-k students in the Thomasville City School System to enjoy classrooms that are new or newly renovated within the last two years.

“We’ve had a waiting list for pre-k because we’ve not had room, so these new classes will help,” Witherspoon said. “This is going to give us three additional classrooms to allow us to place our pre-k and kindergarten in the same hallway. That will be a wonderful transition for us and free up some extra space for other programs and future student growth.”

The front renovations are also welcome, Witherspoon said.

“This front office has not been renovated since the school was built,” he said. “With all the technological changes and added positions, it has really cramped us up. This will allow us more elbow room and to spread out.”

Witherspoon said these expansions will also help enhance school security because a help desk will be centrally located in the administrative wing to monitor visitor traffic coming in the front door.

The covered drive-through canopy will also help keep students dry during inclement weather while they await their rides, he said.

The addition is designed by Jinright, Ryan and Lynn Architects of Thomasville, and will conform to the original 1969 building’s architectural style, officials said.

The school was expanded once before in 1992 when six classrooms and a gymnasium were added.

Earlier SPLOST projects included extensive renovations at Thomasville High School and MacIntyre Park Middle School, a new classroom and office building at Jerger Elementary School, and a classroom and office building at Harper Elementary School.

The Scott addition is expected to be completed by July.

“This has been in planning for the past year-and-a-half, so we we’re very excited to be going ahead,” Witherspoon said. “We haven’t made an official announcement to the kids yet, but we do have a drawing in the front office.

“Kids see it and ask questions, and we tell them it is what the school will look like once the project is completed. They get excited, too.”

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