FREMONT - The Wayne County Board of Commissioners, Wayne County Board of Education, county leaders, school district administrators and town of Fremont leaders met Wednesday morning to make an announcement.
The school district and county have been awarded a $15 million grant to build a new Fremont Elementary school. The funding is provided through the State’s Need-Based Public School Capital Fund program.
Wayne County will provide $8 million in matching funds for the school’s construction.
“Building a new Fremont Elementary is and has been a joint effort by many people who have a vision for Wayne County Public Schools,” said Don Christopher West, chairman of the Wayne County Board of Education.
"I would like to extend my appreciation to the NC Department of Public Instruction, Representative John Bell and Senator Jim Perry, my fellow board of education members, the Wayne County Board of Commissioners and its late chairman, Ray Mayo, for their support and many contributions to bringing this project to fruition for our students and community."
WCPS officials plan to break ground on the new school in spring 2021.
According to blueprints, Fremont Elementary will mirror the design scheme of recently-built Meadow Lane Elementary. It is expected to accommodate more than three times as many students as the current Fremont Stars facility, which has approximately 200 students. The additional space will help bolster the needs for K-3 class size in northern Wayne County.
The new school will have energy efficient HVAC systems, upgraded furniture and technology and advanced safety and security features.
The building’s completion date is projected for 2023.
"Providing our children with safe facilities continues to be a priority of the board of commissioners," said Joe Daughtry, vice-chair of the county commissioners.
FFremont Elementary was originally constructed in 1923, and is one of the oldest schools in our state. We are excited that NCDPI chose Wayne County for this grant opportunity, and we look forward to breaking ground on a new school in Fremont.”
Absent from the town hall announcement was E. Ray Mayo, who recently passed away. The former chair of the board of commissioners, Mr. Mayo remained a vocal advocate for building a new elementary school in Fremont.
“Like it was for many, this project was a passion of Ray Mayo,” West said. “ had several discussions with Mr. Mayo about the need to replace this nearly century-old school. He recognized the importance of this project for the town of Fremont, as well as the financial impacts a new elementary school would have on the northern end of Wayne County if it were to come to fruition.”