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School addition running behind

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Construction on the addition to Hugh Mercer Elementary School is now 15 days behind schedule.

Bob Burch, Fredericksburg schools director of operations, told the School Board on Monday night that he’s hopeful the time will be made up.

He said the contractor is producing a “revised accelerated schedule for completion.”

The expansion will allow the school to keep up with the city’s increasing population.

The elementary school off Cowan Boulevard was built for 800 to 825 students, but this year had closer to 900 enrolled, with more children expected in the future.

The current school stretches over 114,900 square feet. The renovation will add another 10,800 square feet.

Substantial completion of the addition was supposed to be done by July 15 and final completion for the addition is set for July 31, Burch said.

“There are some issues we are working very hard to solve,” he said.

Burch expects to be able to give tours to the School Board next week.

Also at Monday’s meeting, the School Board approved the recommendation for a new principal for James Monroe High School.

Taneshia H. Rachal will be the next head of the high school.

Rachal was recommended by Schools Superintendent David Melton and the School Board unanimously approved the recommendation.

She has been an assistant principal at the school for the past seven years.

She graduated from the University of Virginia with a B.A., and a master of teaching degree. She also holds a master’s in educational leadership from the University of Mary Washington and an Ed.D. in educational leadership from Virginia Commonwealth University.

Rachal has worked in the field of secondary education for 17 years.

Current Principal John B. Gordon has been the school’s principal for the past five years.

He’ll become the school division’s director of operations. Burch retires in August.

Robyn Sidersky 540/374-5413


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