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Lincolnshire renovation celebrated

August 28, 1998|By MATTHEW BIENIEK

HALFWAY - Parents, teachers and students gathered Thursday at Lincolnshire Elementary School for an open house celebrating a $4.3 million renovation and expansion.

"One heck of a celebration" is how Liz Jones, PTA president described the event.

Renovations began in November, 1996, and added 11,500 square feet to the building, Principal Thomas Ingram said. The school has about 540 students, he said.

"We renovated the whole thing and never missed a day of school," he said.

Cookies and punch covered tables inside the building where parents, teachers, children and neighbors wandered through the school during the open house. About 150 parents, teachers and children stood in front of the building for a ribbon cutting ceremony.

Two former students were among those seated as official guests for the ribbon cutting - Washington County Commissioners President Gregory I. Snook, and Maryland Del. Robert A. McKee, R-Washington. Snook and McKee greeted some of their former teachers in the audience after the ribbon cutting.

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Snook said he was housed for a while in one of the same portable classrooms now sitting vacant behind the school.

McKee's granddaughter, Tiffany, now attends the school.

The celebration ended 18 months of coping with the ongoing construction for students and teachers. Teachers said everyone got used to the chaos, dust and noise.

"The kids were excited about the construction equipment," said kindergarten teacher Nancy Nally. Nally and fellow kindergarten teacher Rachel Rice said the new classrooms they have will help them be better teachers.

Construction created a mess, said former student Allison Moberly, now a seventh-grader at Springfield Middle School. Her sister, Kaitlyn, still attends Lincolnshire as a fourth-grader. Kaitlyn is more impressed by the new playground equipment than the new classrooms, she said.

Nicki Turner's son, Dylan, is a third-grader at the school. Turner said her son's classroom moved three times in one year during construction.

The renovated school includes an expanded library, a library classroom, a new computer lab, an additional first-grade classroom and two new preschool classrooms.

The new front section of the building required demolition of the schools' administrative offices, some instructional rooms, the health room and a special education resource room, Ingram said.

Lincolnshire Elementary was originally built in the mid-1950s with an addition in the mid-1960s, Ingram said.

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