It was almost eleven month ago representatives from the Aledo school district, Walsh Ranch development...even Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price, came together to break ground on Aledo ISD's fifth elementary school.
On Friday, most all who celebrated that previous occasion returned to see the finished product during groundbreaking ceremonies of the Mary D. and F. Howard Walsh Elementary.
"From the perspective of a career educator it gives me a sense of the future," said Aledo ISD Superintendent Dr. Derek Citty. "The life of a school is usually 50-60 years, sometimes longer if you're lucky. There's just a certain satisfaction, knowing long after I'm gone there's going to be kids walking the hallways of this building."
Citty recognized all parties involved with the project saying it was a "team effort."
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"I've always said the best thing you can do for public education is done as a team," he said.
School board president Jay Stringer called the Walsh family a "blessing."
About the building
The two-story campus was built on 14 acres donated by the Walsh family. It features abundant natural light reducing energy use and improve student and staff comfort.
Technology amenities include a wireless network and movable touch screen panels. Also, the 100,000-square foot campus has learning spaces featuring marker walls and learning hubs.
"Our ribbon cutting and dedication will be an exciting day for the Walsh students, families and Aledo ISD," said Sheri Coll, Walsh Elementary Principal in a release. "Many hands and great thinking have gone into making this school a reality. We look forward to providing excellence in the classroom every day and molding students for many years to come."
Walsh classroom features include flexible, shared areas with movable work tables and direct connections to the exterior to allow for science, art and technology exploration.
Walsh, which is the only Aledo ISD campus in the Fort Worth city limits, is the district's fifth elementary and the first addition at this level since McCall opened in 2008. It is also the newest campus in Aledo ISD since the Daniel Ninth Grade Campus opened in 2010.
Funding of the school was part of $53.2 million in bond packages passed in 2015. It included one for $28.8 million focusing on a new elementary school, and another for $24.4 million that focused on technology, new school buses, safety and security and construction and renovation within existing facilities.
Proposition 1 – the new elementary school – passed 1,756 – 1,677 (51.15 percent to 48.85 percent). Proposition 2 passed 52.41 percent to 47.59 percent (1,802 – 1,636).
Voters rejected a similar bond proposal of $61.3 million - all in the same package. The Aledo 2025 Committee went back to work, did some restructuring, and broke their proposal into two packages.
Neither bonds include the cost of land on which to place the new elementary school, however, with the newest district growth projected to be in the upcoming Walsh Ranch development, the school was expected to be built on land donated within that development.
The estimated tax impact of the total bond proposal was anticipated to be about $7.78 per month based on a $100,000 home value.
Did you know?
Walsh Elementary is the first Aledo ISD campus located in Fort Worth city limits. To reach Walsh Elementary, take I-30 to exit 1A (Walsh Ranch Parkway) and follow the signs into the new Walsh neighborhood development.