New Bournedale school delights parents, kids

By Paul Gately
Posted Jun 18, 2009 @ 09:35 AM



Bourne’s new elementary school was a long time coming. See the video of the grand opening online at

The ceremonial ribbon cutting event Sunday afternoon was likely the easiest part of the nine-year quest to plan, fund, design, re-design, construct and open the new Bournedale Elementary School and Early Childhood Learning Center off Scenic Highway.

Superintendent Edmond LaFleur and Bournedale Principal Jeanne Holland did the honors with a host of third-grade students, who served as tour guides during the Grand Opening.

LaFleur said the school “came in on time and under budget.” He said the entire project was likely the longest in the history of the Massachusetts School Building Assistance Bureau’s history. A feasibility study was first undertaken in 2000.

Parents and students cascaded into the school for tours along with town and system officials and staffers.

The school will open to students in late August. It is not what was first designed by architect Dan Tavares of Kaestle Boos Associates. A $13 million cost overrun rejected by voters prompted redesign site reconfiguration deep in the woods of the busy highway.

The project was aided by a land swap with neighboring Cape Cod Aggregates owner Sam Lorusso and the political intervention of Senate President Therese Murray, D-Plymouth, who helped divert highway construction money toward creation of a new signalized Scenic Highway intersection at Edge Hill Road along the approach to the school.

Richard Lavoie, school committee chairman, said he hopes the intersection will be done by Labor Day and the start of the new school year. “Without it, we’ll have some problems,” he said.

Retired Business Manager Robert Watmough said the move of material from the Hoxie and Otis Memorial Schools to Peebles Elementary starts Thursday. The new school, he said, is furnished.

Hoxie in North Sagamore and OMS on Otis Air National Guard Base are closing as Bourne Public Schools. Etched-glass pictures of both buildings are in place above the Bournedale entrance.

The new building includes big windows and warm earth-tone-colors. It was constructed to easily make room for expansion. School administrators say it will open at capacity.

The School Building Committee chairman is Mary Jo Coggeshall. Jim Liddick served as project manager for the town, working for Turner Construction Management Co. Braitt Brothers, Inc. was the general contractor.

Bill Friar was the clerk of the works.