Prospect on the horizon

School and county officials break ground on new elementary school

Breaking ground for the new Prospect Elementary School in Seymour are, from left, Don McNelly, Blount County School Board member; Steve Samples, Blount County Commissioner chair, John Davis Jr., Blount County School Board member; Chris Cantrell, chair, Blount County School Board, Brad Long, Blount County School Board member; Rob Webb, Blount County School Board member; Rob Britt, schools director; Jake Jones; Jerry Cunningham, Blount County mayor and Ron French, Blount County commission.

Photo by Leslie Karnowski

Breaking ground for the new Prospect Elementary School in Seymour are, from left, Don McNelly, Blount County School Board member; Steve Samples, Blount County Commissioner chair, John Davis Jr., Blount County School Board member; Chris Cantrell, chair, Blount County School Board, Brad Long, Blount County School Board member; Rob Webb, Blount County School Board member; Rob Britt, schools director; Jake Jones; Jerry Cunningham, Blount County mayor and Ron French, Blount County commission.

Former property owners Berl McCammon, Charlotte McCammon and Glenda Edmonson break ground for the new Prospect Elementary School with Blount County commissioner Ron French.

Photo by Leslie Karnowski

Former property owners Berl McCammon, Charlotte McCammon and Glenda Edmonson break ground for the new Prospect Elementary School with Blount County commissioner Ron French.

School and County officials gathered in Seymour recently to break ground on Prospect Elementary School.

County Mayor Jerry Cunningham said the school will provide a relief valve for Porter and Walland elementary schools. “The best investment this county can make is education for our kids and investing in the facilities they are educated in,” he said. “It has just been one of the most pleasant experiences with this joint construction committee.”

The committee was made up of county commission members and school board members. “It was a totally amicable venture and I’m very pleased with it,” he said. “It’s good to go into a project where there is peace and harmony on all sides.

The school is being built on 17 acres on Burnett Station Road at a cost of $13.3 million to open. There will be additional costs for hiring staff when the school opens in August of 2011, the mayor said.

Blount County Schools director Rob Britt said he is excited by the possibilities for Prospect Elementary School. “I appreciate the board and the commission working closely together to make it happen,” he said.

Britt, who is in his first year as schools director, said he had never been part of the planning process for building a school and he appreciated how the commission and school board cooperated in a transparent way. “The communication that occurred was great to watch happen,” he said.

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