"Good News" Magazine Sept. '17 GN issue to publish online - Page 9

School News SUGAR VALLEY RURAL CHARTER SCHOOL NEWS SVRCS Gets a Much Needed, Much Welcome Addition! The Sugar Valley Rural Charter School recently hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the com- pletion of their latest building on the school's campus. The event took place on August 21st - two days before school opened for the 2017/2018 school year, and showcased the new structure, which houses 15 new classrooms. The school has been open since 2000, and over the years has expanded both its architec- ture and its student body by leaps and bounds. During their first year, the SVRCS had one small building that educated children, grades kindergarten through 12, plus served as a cafeteria and a lunch room, and now, these 17 years later, there are seven permanent buildings plus multiple trailers, all containing classrooms. The new addition is a welcome one, since the school now educates over 500 students, and employs around 100 faculty members. Tracie Kennedy, CEO of the the SVRCS, welcomed visitors and thanked those who made the expansion possible. "I want to express my deep gratitude, and the school's gratitude, to the Sugar Valley Concerned Citizens, for all of the hard work and perseverance that they have done to make this building a success - for establishing it for our students, our staff, and for our community," said Kennedy. "It's a gorgeous building. I also want to thank our Sugar Valley Rural Charter School Board for coming today, and for standing by us, through this time, and for sticking it out." The Sugar Valley Concerned Citizens is a community group made up of residents of the 17747 zipcode that owns the land, and the buildings that the school sits on. Carla McElwain, President of the Sugar Valley Concerned Citizens, held back the tears as she thanked numerous contributors, financial institutions, and her husband, who was the head of the building committee. "I would like to congratulate the Sugar Valley Concerned Citizens. Twenty years ago, this piece of property was a cow pasture. And in these last few years, this is what it has become. We're just so proud of what we've been able to accomplish," said McElwain. "I'd like to thank all of our SVCC members for all of the work that they have accomplished through the many years that we have been here," she continued. "They have put in a lot of volunteer hours, and it's all just for the kids, the community, and the people who have come from outside of our community to come here and become a part of our community. Last but not least, I want to thank a guy who has - this makes me real emotional," said McElwain as she wiped the tears from her eyes. "A guy who has put his heart and soul into this project, my husband, Ivan, who has coordinated all of this, with all of these people." McElwain concluded, "The Sugar Valley Concerned Citizens have accomplished our part, and now it's up to the school to take over." Article/Story: by Amber Morris Photos: Top left - SVRCS CEO, Tracie Kennedy cuts the ribbon with the assistance of SVCC President, Carla McElwain, and SVRCS School Board President, Sandra Garverick. Bottom left - The new addition. Top right - SVCC President, Carla McElwain (6th from left), SVRCS CEO, Tracie Kennedy (9th from left), and SVRCS School Board President, Sandra Garverick (10th from left), are surrounded by other school officials and dignitaries as they pose for a photo following the ribbon cutting ceremony. www.bearcountrygoodnews.com “Good News” -- September -- 7