Two new Fayette County elementaries nearly ready

Coventry Oak Elementary School.
Coventry Oak Elementary School.

Construction crews are putting the final touches on Fayette County’s two new elementary schools set to open in August, Myron Thompson, senior director of operations and support said after Monday night’s school board meeting.

Coventry Oak Elementary School and Garrett Morgan Elementary School are among four school construction projects in the district.

“There is certainly a great deal of excitement about the opening of our two newest elementary schools and as the completion of the construction draws near we’re confident these new buildings will meet the high standard of excellence that our community demands,” said Superintendent Manny Caulk.

In the last few weeks, in preparation for the start of school on Aug.10, work was being finished on the plumbing and electrical systems, drywall and painting, brick masonry and landscaping at Coventry Oak.

The name Coventry Oak blends two neighborhoods in northwest Lexington: Coventry and Oakwood. The school is in Coventry subdivision, one of the newest neighborhoods in the area. Students from the Oakwood area, off Georgetown Road, also will attend. When established in 1964, Oakwood became only the second community where black residents of Lexington could buy a house, the school’s website said.

Garrett Morgan Elementary was named after a native of Paris who invented and patented multiple devices, including a sewing machine and a breathing device to protect soldiers and firefighters exposed to toxic fumes and fire, the school’s website said.

His safety hood is credited for the rescue of two workers trapped in the 1916 Cleveland Tunnel explosion. Later, Morgan created and patented the three-light traffic signal, incorporating the yellow warning light to alert drivers to prepare to stop.

“Morgan represents the innovation, diligence, and creativity which we will seek to instill and cultivate in all of our students,” the website said.

The school construction at Morgan is nearly complete and needs only some finishing touches.

Besides the new elementaries, a $15.2 million renovation at Squires Elementary School, 3337 Squire Oak Drive, is scheduled to be completed when classes begin.

Construction on the high school on Winchester Road, to open in August 2017, is at least 44 percent complete, Thompson said. Work is on the foundation, utilities and ductwork this summer. The architect is Tate Hill Jacobs. With the land, the total cost of the project is $81.5 million, Thompson said.

The district’s Carter G. Woodson Academy will move from Crawford Middle School to the new high school.

Board member Amanda Ferguson said at the June 27 school board meeting that signs at the construction site refer to Fayette County High School, but that won’t be the school’s name. Once the principal is named, a committee will help decide the name after reviewing suggestions from the public.

Valarie Honeycutt Spears: 859-231-3409, @vhspears

Coventry Oak Elementary

2441 Huntly Place, near Georgetown Road

Architect: Clotfelter-Samokar

General contractor: D.W. Wilburn

Cost: $19.4 million

Capacity: 650 students

Principal: Shamiah Ford

Motto: “Challenge minds, create learners, cultivate futures.”

Mascot: Comets

Colors: Teal, gray and white

Garrett Morgan Elementary

Passage Mound Way near Polo Club Boulevard

Architect: Moody Nolan Architect

General contractor: Griggs Enterprises

Cost: $19.8 million

Capacity: 650 students

Principal: Sarah Woodford

Motto: unavailable

Mascot: unavailable

Colors: Red, Yellow and Green