Frances Meeks Elementary School dedicated in front of namesake

Updated: Jun. 17, 2021 at 3:33 PM EDT
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BRYAN COUNTY, Ga. (WTOC) - This school year challenged a lot of districts in our area.

Bryan County Schools not only planned how to teach through a pandemic, but also opened a new school.

Frances Meeks Elementary School has been up and running for the past year, but Thursday they got to do something they’ve been waiting for - dedicate it in front of the woman it’s named after.

“When you think about opening a brand new school during a pandemic, opening it for face-to-face instruction and then being able to celebrate it’s naming after such a special person, it’s a very special meaning,” said Dr. Paul Brooksher, Superintendent of Bryan County Schools.

It took 18 months to build and cost $26 million but Frances Meeks Elementary School is now home to more than 750 K-5 students. School leaders say it’s named after the grandmother of education in Bryan County. She walked into the building seeing first a quote she lives by.

“It’s the most magnificent building I think I’ve ever seen,” said Frances Meeks.

She dedicated 50 years of her life to education, teaching in three states working almost every job from food service to principal and board member. She says it’s been amazing to watch Bryan county grow and the schools excel and is honored to have a part in that with this elementary.

“I just can’t express how I feel. I was so overwhelmed and just I can’t wait to see the rest of the building,” said Meeks.

While it was dedicated Thursday, students filled these halls all year.

“Although we are a new school you wouldn’t have known we have not missed a beat at all,” said Dr. Brittney Mobley, Principal of Frances Meeks Elementary School.

Though it’s summer now, they had in-person learning all year. Leaders say though different it was a success.

“We just tried to stay positive of course there were things that were out of our control. Everything that we did we just kept the students in mind and made the best of every situation,” said Dr. Mobley.

The school was built because of the growth in the county and leaders say there is still room for more as families continue to call Bryan County Schools home.

School leaders say they are already excited to bring students back into the new building in August.

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