GCPS welcomes students to eight new schools for 2003-04









GCPS welcomes students to eight new schools for 2003-04

Gwinnett County Public Schools will open eight new schools this coming August, representing the most aggressive building program year yet in the school system's history. The eight new schools are complete and will be ready for students as the new school year opens on Aug. 11. Although there may be some finishing work still going on at some of them, principals and front office staff are moved in and several of the schools are planning open houses and tours in the next few weeks. In addition, these schools-- like all Gwinnett schools-- will hold back-to-school registration activities the week before school starts. These new schools are the first projects from the school system's 2002-07 Building Program, which means that in addition to opening on time, they all are opening completely debt-free.

Of special note is the opening of Peachtree Ridge High, the only new high school opening this year and the anchor for the school system's newest cluster. The Peachtree Ridge Cluster will include Peachtree Ridge High, Richard Hull Middle, Jackson Elementary, Dr. M. H. Mason Jr. Elementary, and Parsons Elementary.
Here are details about the new schools:

Peachtree Ridge High
Cluster: Peachtree Ridge
Address: 1555 Old Peachtree Rd., Suwanee, GA 30024
Telephone Number: 678-957-3100
Principal: Dr. James Kahrs Enrollment Projection: 1,648
Mascot: Lions Colors: Royal blue and white with red
Building Size: 416,000 square feet Field House: 15,000 square feet
Cost: $29 million or $69.75 a square foot (compared to a metro Atlanta avg. of $100.59 a square foot)
Capacity: 3,000
Final Instructional Areas: two gymnasiums, 77 general classrooms, 20 science classrooms, eight business education classrooms, seven computer labs, three art rooms, one band classroom, one orchestra classroom, one choral classroom, one technical education classroom, one family/consumer science classroom, three health/P.E. classrooms, one TV production classroom, one marketing classroom, and 12 special education classrooms.

J.A. Alford Elementary
Cluster: Berkmar
Address: 2625 Lawrenceville Hwy., Lawrenceville, GA 30044
Telephone Number: 678-924-5300
Principal: Laurie Allison Enrollment Projection: 790
Mascot: Stars Colors: Red, white, and blue
Community Open House: Tuesday, July 22, 6-8 p.m.
Building Size: 90,453 square feet
Cost: $6.1 million or $67.71 a square foot (compared to a metro Atlanta avg. of $91 a square foot)
Capacity: 770

W.J. Cooper Elementary
Cluster: Grayson
Address: 555 Ozora Rd., Loganville, GA 30052
Telephone Number: 770-554-7050
Principal: Dr. Phil Epperson Enrollment Projection: 1,003
Mascot: Rams Colors: Green and gold
Open House/Self-Guided Tour: July 20, 2-4 p.m.
Building Size: 90,453 square feet
Cost: $6 million or $66.41 a square foot (compared to a metro Atlanta avg. of $91 a square foot)
Capacity: 770

Corley Elementary
Cluster: Berkmar
Address: 1331 Pleasant Hill Rd., Lawrenceville, GA 30044
Telephone Number: 678-924-5330
Principal: Dr. Valerie Manson Enrollment Projection: 934
Mascot: Cougars Colors: Light blue and white
"Roam Your New Home"/ Self-Guided Tour: Sat. July 26, 1-3 p.m.
Building Size: 90,453 square feet
Cost: $5.7 million or $63.10 a square foot (compared to a metro Atlanta avg. of $91 a square foot)
Capacity: 770
Duncan Creek Elementary
Cluster: Dacula (will join the Mill Creek Cluster when it forms in August 2004)
Address: 4500 Braselton Hwy., Hoschton, GA 30548
Telephone Number: 678-714-5800
Principal: Chris Emsley Enrollment Projection: 871
Mascot: Cardinals Colors: Red and khaki
"Take a Peek at Duncan Creek"/Self-Guided Tour: Sat., July 26, 1-3 p.m.
Building Size: 90,453 square feet
Cost: $5.4 million or $59.72 a square foot (compared to a metro Atlanta avg. of $91 a square foot)
Capacity: 770

Ivy Creek Elementary
Cluster: North Gwinnett (will join the Mill Creek Cluster when it forms in August 2004)
Address: 3443 Ridge Rd., Buford, GA 30519
Telephone Number: 678-714-3655
Principal: Yvonne Frey Enrollment Projection: 879
Mascot: Black bear cubs Colors: Navy blue, white, and green
Open House: July 26, 12-2 p.m.
Building Size: 90,453 square feet
Cost: $5.6 million or $62.32 a square foot (compared to a metro Atlanta avg. of $91 a square foot)
Capacity: 770

Parsons Elementary
Cluster: Peachtree Ridge
Address: 1615 Old Peachtree Rd., Suwanee, GA 30024
Telephone Number: 678-957-3050
Principal: Melinda Sepmeyer Enrollment Projection: 785
Mascot: Lion cubs Colors: Royal blue and white with red
Building Size: 90,453 square feet
Cost: $5.6 million or $62.50 a square foot (compared to a metro Atlanta avg. of $91 a square foot)
Capacity: 770

Sycamore Elementary
Cluster: North Gwinnett
Address: 5695 Sycamore Rd., Sugar Hill, GA 30518
Telephone Number: 678-714-5770
Principal: Brenda Anderson Enrollment Projection: 869
Mascot: Huskies Colors: Red and black
Open House: July 26, 2-4 p.m.
Building Size: 90,453 square feet
Cost: $5.5 million or $60.84 a square foot (compared to a metro Atlanta avg. of $91 a square foot)
Capacity: 770


Gwinnett's seven new elementary schools are all built using the same floor plan. Each school has 37 classrooms, two computer labs, one art room, one music room, one media center, one P.E. building, and seven special education classrooms. The use of a prototype design has been a very cost-effective means of building new schools, resulting in construction costs that come in below the metro and regional averages.