School Superintendent Dr. Robert Waters said Tuesday that the Long County School System’s new school building should be completed for the start of the 2018-19 school year.
“The weather has caused some delay, however, we will start school in August in the new building,” Waters said.
The new school will house elementary and middle school students on a 75-acre site between Elim Church Road and Highway 84, just east of the Ludowici city limits.
“There will be a paved road connecting Highway 84 to Elim Church Road,” the superintendent said.
Workers are painting classrooms, putting up drywall and have installed windows, according to Waters. By May 25, the wings should be completed, he added. The school system broke ground on the new school nearly two years ago.
“The building could possibly be turned over to us by the end of June,” Waters said.
The $30.1 million project received $27.1 million in funds from the Georgia Department of Education and $3 million from the school district’s bond referendum, according to school administrators.
School Board Chairwoman Florence Baggs said she is pleased with the progress being made on the new school construction. Baggs said the current building is aging and the growing student body “has outgrown the old building.”
Long BOE Vice Chairman Dennis DeLoach agreed with Baggs, writing in an email that the new school is needed to serve the growing student population. DeLoach added that the construction project remains within budget.
Baggs also confirmed that during a regular meeting held March 19, the board approved a new 3-year contract for the superintendent at his current rate of pay, which will begin on July 1. Waters receives a yearly salary of $144,000. He said he is finishing up his 10th year with the Long County School System.
Waters said superintendent salaries in Georgia vary from school system to school system, and are generally based on the number of schools in a district. Long has four schools; two elementary, one middle and a high school.
School superintendents in nearby McIntosh and Candler counties earned annual salaries of $280,000 and $163,000, respectively in 2016, according to the Georgia Department of Education website. McIntosh and Candler’s school districts each have three schools; one elementary, a middle and a high school.
McIntosh School Superintendent Dr. John Barge is a former Georgia state school superintendent and former Georgia gubernatorial candidate. Barge qualified earlier this month to run for state school superintendent, according to the Georgia Secretary of State website. Barge will face incumbent State School Superintendent Richard Woods and candidate Dr. Sonia Francis-Rolle in the Republican primary in May, according to elections.sos.ga.gov.
Glynn County’s school superintendent earned $191,728 in 2016 according to gadoe.org. The Glynn County School District has 10 elementary schools, four middle schools and two high schools, in addition to six programs that include pre-K, a college and career academy, and charter school facilities.
Liberty County School Superintendent Dr. Franklin Perry earns a yearly salary of $192,000. Liberty has seven elementary schools, three middle schools, two high schools, a college and career academy, a pre-K center and an alternative school.