Manila elementary building dedication ceremony held
Manila Public School hosted a building dedication and ribbon cutting for the new Justin Veach Elementary Building on Tuesday evening.
The ceremony was held in front of the building with family members of the late Veach recognized. His widow and sons, Kristy, Drew and Jake, cut the ribbon, officially opening the building named for the former school board member who was instrumental in getting the new building project started.
Superintendent Pam Castor welcomed everyone and introduced Board President Tony Crowell.
Crowell welcomed everyone who turned out and thanked everyone for their support of the Manila School District. He also recognized Jerry Brackett, architect with Brackett Krennerich and members of Nabholtz Construction.
Crowell spoke about Veach's dedication to his family, community and the Manila School District.
Using a quote from Robert Kennedy, Crowell said, "Few will have the greatness to be in history itself, but each of us can work to change a small portion of events in the total and of all those acts will be written the history of this generation."
Crowell went on to say in September 2006 Veach was elected to the Manila School Board.
"He brought a sense of cohesion and completeness to the board between his members," Crowell said. "Many who knew Justin knew his passion for sports. His passion for sports has little comparison to his concern and dedication for the education of the children of Manila School District. Justin knew, being a landowner and patron, this building would affect him as much as any citizen. He also knew this Manila Public School System is the cornerstone and the rock of this community and he supported it. This building was a dream in the mind of Justin and today it becomes a reality."
Crowell then quoted Proverbs 24: 3-4 "By wisdom a house is built and through understanding it is established; by knowledge the rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures."
Justin's brother, Brandon Veach, a member of the Manila School Board, spoke briefly saying, "I've heard it said a measure of a man's life is not what he owned or the positions he held but the friends he leaves behind and the positive impact he had on those around him. This building is part of Justin's impact and he would be proud to see this facility, proud to see the excitement and enthusiasm of students and teachers. It is an inspiration to us all."
Following the ribbon cutting, the new building, as well as all buildings, were open to the public to tour.
The new building replaces two round buildings built in the early 1960s. The demolished buildings totaled 31,052 square feet. The new K-4 building increases the space to 33,531 square feet. It features 24 classrooms, administrative area with principal's office and work rooms, nurses office and health room, teacher preparation work rooms, and a covered drop off and pick-up area for students. Several safety features and energy saving features of the new building include a fully fire sprinklered classroom addition, fire alarm system, secured entrances, tornado resistant corridor construction, geothermal heating and air conditioning system, lighting controls and motion sensors on all light fixtures, well insulated building envelope, and all equipment is high efficiency.
Teachers were available to meet with parents and patrons. Several meetings were held throughout the evening and refreshments were served in the cafeteria.
A 9,057 square foot cafeteria expansion is also underway and should be completed in the next few weeks. It includes area for new serving lines, a dining area, and a stage. The existing kitchen area was renovated and expanded with new kitchen equipment and was ready for students at the beginning of the school year.