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Harford County Executive Barry Glassman wore his maroon letterman’s jacket Thursday, a proud graduate of Havre de Grace High School, as he joined other county, school and community members to break ground on a new $80 million combined high and middle school building off of Lewis Lane.
“The great equalizer in America is education. No matter where you are, it can lift you up and lift our young people into prosperity in the future,” Glassman said. “It has taken a lot of hard work to get us where we’re financially solvent and ready to move forward.”
It took six years of lobbying, planning, going back to the drawing board to get to Thursday’s groundbreaking on the 250,111-square-foot building that is projected to open for the 2020 school year.
The county has begun selling bonds to finance its share of the project and major construction contracts were approved by the school system earlier this year. Site preparation began in March, including construction of sediment and erosion control structures and excavation for the building’s foundation.
What is a landscape of dirt, Havre de Grace Mayor William T. Martin said, will soon become “sacred Havre de Grace dirt,” and on it will be built a place where sixth-graders will get off the bus fearful of going to a “big boy school,” where eighth-graders will learn U.S. history and ninth-graders will learn algebraic equations, where cheerleaders will learn new moves and kids in the hallways will talk about a touchdown they saw at last Friday night’s football game.
“Relationships and bonds with their peers and, hopefully, their teachers will be formed that will hopefully last for a lifetime, all taking place right behind me,” Martin said. “This is going to be hallowed ground in our city and this is going to produce the best of the Warriors.”