Two elementary schools in Fluvanna
County took a huge hit this year to help balance the books.
Both Cunningham and Columbia
are slated to close at the end of the month. Now those with ties to the schools
are celebrating memories.
Thursday night teachers,
students and parents with ties to Columbia Elementary gathered to share
memories made in the small school.
It was one of the last
chances to see the school before it closes its doors for good.
"You can close the
building but Columbia is going to live on for a pretty long time in the hearts
and minds of all the people who went to school here," said Mel Sheridan.
Columbia has been part of
the Sheridan family for generations. Following in his mother Mary Jane's
footsteps, Mel Sheridan went to Columbia and so did his children.
"I traveled all
around the world with the military but honestly I never found anywhere I liked
better than central Virginia and two of my four sons are here with us who went
to Columbia," Mel said.
Now his grandchildren go
there too. All were there along with many others to say goodbye to the tight-knit
school. They shared songs, pictures and, most importantly, memories of the
school they say is unique.
"What makes Columbia
so special is it's one of the last true community schools. We only have about
115 students here and we know these kids inside and out," said Janet Harper,
When the doors close for good
at the end of the month, many say it will be the children they miss most.
"It will definitely
be the kids. I only taught here one year but this was the best class by far. Hands
down the best kids I've ever taught," said teacher Skyler Fox.
But many hope this is just
a temporary end to the school they love so much.
"I still have hopes
that it will be reopened again. You never know," said Mary Jane Sheridan.
The closing ceremony for
Cunningham is Friday. That event starts at the elementary school at 6:30 p.m.
Teachers, Students Past and Present Say Goodbye to ColumbiaMore>>