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Planning for middle school on post continues

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POSTED: August 7, 2007 5:02 a.m.
The plan to build a Liberty County middle school on Fort Stewart has received little public attention, but the preliminary steps, such as an environmental assessment, continue grinding on.
Recently, residents were asked to comment on the environmental assessment for the proposed school and documents were placed on file for the public at the Main Post Library and the Live Oak Liberty County Library Hinesville branch.
The new middle school is proposed to accommodate students, military and civilian, who live in the Fort Stewart area.
Snelson-Golden and Lewis Frasier middle schools historically get seventh and eighth graders from Fort Stewart. DoD schools on post are open to grades one through six. Overcrowding, however, is forcing the Liberty BoE to assign about 400 military children to Midway Middle School, which is about a 10-mile drive away.
The Liberty BoE’s five-year capital outlay plan calls for construction of a new middle school to meet the needs.
Under the plan being considered, the Army would lease Fort Stewart property to the Liberty school board to construct and operate a new middle school. The proposed school would house 750 students and would be expandable to 1,000.
The Environmental Division at Fort Stewart and the Army Corps of Engineers from Savannah conducted a survey of six sites on the post and considered the effects if no action were taken.
An area in the National Guard Training Area off Olmstead Road, near Gate 2 received the highest rating as a school site. An immediate drawback is that the Guard uses the area for training, but the Army report suggests that the lease could be revised to permit the school and there is a possibility of locating the Guard elsewhere.
Using this site would require some road construction for both on-post and off-post access. Utilities infrastructure is in place.
The National Guard site is subject to minor, intermittent noise, as were all the other sites considered.
 

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