|The new gym at Bailey's Upper.|
Bailey’s Upper Elementary School now has a 5,000-square-foot gymnasium plus an outdoor playground and ball field. The new gym was officially opened April 26 with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
|Bailey's patrols gather for the ribbon-cutting. In the foreground, left to right: Principal Marie Lemmon, School Board Chair Sandy Evans, Mason Supervisor Penny Gross, and Executive Principal for Region 2 Jay Pearson.|
Students had been given a chance to vote on the gym’s interior colors – they selected blueberry and mango – and had a say in the playground design, said Bailey’s Principal Marie Lemmon.
|The Bailey's dance team performs in the new gym.|
The school, on Leesburg Pike in Seven Corners, opened in 2014 in a converted office building. Since then, it’s been viewed as a model for an urban design school, said School Board Chair Sandy Evans (Mason), who noted it has attracted educators from nearby jurisdictions and across the nation who are considering replicating the model.
|The new outdoor recreation area.|
Mason Supervisor Penny Gross called Bailey’s “a wonderful, wonderful school and also a wonderful example of taking something old and making it really spectacular.”
Bailey’s Upper serves grades 3-5, while the lower grades remain in the original Bailey’s school building. The school board for years had trouble finding land for a new school to relieve severe overcrowding at Bailey’s, so when the office building became available, the board agreed to move fast to purchase and renovate it. The BoS approved the project in June 2014.
|School Board Chair Sandy Evans.|
The building has indoor play space but there wasn’t enough room for a full-scale gym, so the board promised to add a gym later.
The gym project cost $2.9 million, which also includes a 10,000-square-foot outdoor play area and playground and a new bus loop.
|The new addition, as seen from Leesburg Pike.|