Months of effort culminated in a large groundbreaking ceremony Thursday for Miami Trace as the district prepares to build a new school for its high school students by 2019.
The student body, faculty, guests, administration, school board and many others joined the Miami Trace Local School District for its groundbreaking ceremony at the track at the current high school Thursday morning. The event opened with the “fight song” performed by the Miami Trace High School Marching Band under the direction of Ken Hoffman. The Miami Trace Symphonic Choir, under the direction of Holly Stanley, also performed, welcoming the crowd with the National Anthem. Pastor Bruce Morrison led the invocation.
Miami Trace Superintendent David Lewis opened with an introduction of various guests, including state representatives, local law enforcement, construction leaders and many others. He then introduced Miami Trace Board of Education President Dave Miller, who gave a few remarks.
“On behalf of the board of education we would like to welcome (the crowd) to this special day, to mark putting the final piece in the puzzle,” Miller said. “Years ago the educational leaders of this area had a vision. Their plan was presented and approved by the state superintendent of public constructions on August 26, 1954. Then on November 3, 1954, voters approved and recommended the merger. It became enacted and at that point Miami Trace was a reality. Finally in 1963, Miami Trace High School, as we know it now, was opened. Some 42 years later in 2005, educational leaders continued the vision of providing the most effective educational environment possible. A bond issue was passed and a new elementary building opened its doors in 2008. The (board of education) sold the old office and opened a new office here on central campus in 2009. A new transportation facility was constructed and opened in 2010, followed by the passing of a new bond issue for a middle school that opened in February of 2011. This brings us to where we are today, building a new school that will serve grades nine through 12 for decades to come. Approximately 60 years since the original consolidation was approved, leaders in this community still strive to provide a well-rounded education experience for our children in need.”
Miller continued by thanking the taxpayers in the community for their continued support and helping to make a central campus setting a reality for Miami Trace. He said that without their support they would not be celebrating this great opportunity. With an enthusiastic “Go Panthers,” Miller concluded and the groundbreaking portion of the ceremony began.
Instead of administration, board members or construction representatives turning the dirt, two students from each grade, a boy and girl, were selected to represent the schools. Some of these students also helped to release 329 balloons, which represent the sum of the graduation years in the current student body, starting with 17 (for the class of 2017) and ending on 30 (for the class of 2030).
The students assisting in the groundbreaking and balloon-launching were: Drake Ecton, Esmeralda Rodriguez Pena, Adailya Ridings, Braxton Harris, Alyvia Atkinson, Zane Carner, Tanner Eggleton, Anslee Combs, Jimmy Woodruff, Asucel Cruz, Konner May, Sue Morris, Jesse Daniels, Anna Williams, Pedro Arreguin, Jarya Hassell, Kamdon Satterfield, Katelyn Lewis, Madyson Adkins, J.J. Puckett, Abbigayle Pettit, James Munro, Wes Gandee, Destiny Peterson, Logan Graham and Faith Halloway.
“I thought it was a great day, with weather better than expected, and I am pleased with the ceremony,” Lewis said following the groundbreaking. “We had well over 200 kids helping, between playing in the band and choir, escorting guests to their seats and breaking ground. This centralized campus has been a long time coming. This is not a quick process, between design and building, there are a lot of things to take care of. Hopefully, in the next two to three weeks we will see some dirt moved on the site. Thank you to everyone for coming. The community has been extremely supportive of the district’s goals and we couldn’t have done it without them. The kids were awesome today. It can be difficult when you have that many kids in one place, but seeing them all there was awesome. We have a lot of fun times ahead.”