Revamp underway for Madison district’s new pre-kindergarten center

This rendering depicts the playground for Madison City School's new pre-kindergarten center on Nance Road. (CONTRIBUTED)
This rendering depicts the playground for Madison City School’s new pre-kindergarten center on Nance Road. (CONTRIBUTED)

MADISON – Noisy jackhammers are bursting through concrete on Nance Road as Madison City Schools sees its planned, standalone pre-kindergarten center become reality.

In mid-May, Madison Board of Education called a special meeting to approve a bid of $621,100 from Pettus Plumbing and Piping of Rogersville to renovate the building for classrooms to accommodate pre-kindergarten students.

Legacy Academy for Children formerly occupied the building, which sits on a three-acre lot about 200 yards north of Rainbow Elementary School. The pre-K center’s proximity to Rainbow will simplify providing joint services, such as maintenance and other support.

Originally, the property was listed for sale at $1.6 million. School officials negotiated a purchase price of $837,500, which includes all furnishings, fixtures, playground equipment and fencing.

The renovations will include work for nine classrooms, improvements to technology, kitchen and bathroom modifications, along with upgrades to security, fire sprinklers and library.

As Madison completes its pre-K center, state school districts are broadening access for pre-K students. Madison City Schools recently received a state grant for one of 100 new pre-K classrooms across Alabama.

The pre-K grants were highly competitive — more than 250 entities applied, superintendent Dr. Dee Fowler said.

The new center will house four existing pre-K classes from Rainbow Elementary School, an additional pre-K class and a new Head Start pre-K for Madison students.

Fowler said the administration and board considered numerous factors to confirm the pre-K is in the best interest of the school district and the Madison community. “Adding and expanding a new grade or program in our district, such as the Pre-Kindergarten program, places classroom demands on our existing facilities,” Dr. Fowler said.

“This purchase will allow the Pre-Kindergarten program to grow without limiting existing school classroom space,” Fowler said. “We’re very excited about the program and the wonderful opportunity it affords.”

The pre-K school will open for students in the 2014-2015 school year. For more information, call 256-464-8370 or visit madisoncity.k12.al.us.

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