Construction is beginning on the Pike Road School. It will be the first independent school for the town since the town council voted to break away from the Montgomery County Public School System in 2010. Friday, the town held a groundbreaking to mark the moment.
Dozens of people in Pike Road came to the ceremonial groundbreaking to celebrate. That includes town leaders, parents, and future students of the school.
The new school will house kindergarten through eighth grades, and town leaders plan to add ninth through twelfth grade in a few years.
"I can't wait until the school comes out, because I'm going to go there and some of my friends are going to go there, and I'm going to be excited when that comes out," said 10-year-old Walker Lee Hinton.
"I think it's going to be easier to come here, and easier not to be late for school. I'm excited," said 8-year-old Lauren Ware.
"It's exciting, It's great to have a school nearby within the community, as a part of this community and as an answer to some of the outcry of the community, you know, they've wanted a school," said Linda Ware, a Pike Road parent and Vice President of the newly formed Pike Road Board of Education.
Town leaders say they have been working toward this for years, and now Mayor Gordon Stone says the town will focus on raising the bar when it comes to education standards.
"When you start from scratch, you have an opportunity to learn from others, and the things we've picked up from the best school systems in alabama and others around the region are--set your bar high, establish a parameter that says we won't accept anything less than excellence," Stone said.
The school will be able to hold up to 850 students. Town leaders expect that to include about 400 students currently enrolled in Montgomery County Public Schools, and some of the 400 others students in the town, who are now attending other schools.
The school will open for classes in fall of 2015. The system's search for a superintendent will begin at the end of this month.