Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony Held For Claremont Elementary School

Board of Education president Nancy LaCorte, with the aid of Claremont Elementary School principal Nicole Bevere, (holding scissors) cuts the ceremonial ribbon at the school on Nov. 1.

It’s been open since Sept. 20, but the Claremont Elementary School was officially opened Nov. 1 with a formal ribbon-cutting ceremony.

The school is the newest building on the district’s roster, having been the centerpiece project in an $84 million facilities referendum in 2014 that also resulted in the realignment of the district.

“This has been an exciting journey, one that started during the months  leading up to December 2014, so that’s almost four years ago that this process began,” schools Superintendent John Ravally told a crowd comprised of district administrators, school staff, and representatives from the architectural and construction firms involved in the project.

“This all began in the dirt,” Bill Grippo, who led the district’s transition team prior to the opening of the 2018-19 school year, told the attendees. Grippo briefly recalled the history of the land on which the school sits, as well as the “Dream Team” assembled to help get the 2014 referendum passed.

Speaking of school principal Nicole Bevere, Grippo – also a principal in the district – said, “I am really proud and feel very secure that the leadership of Nicole Bevere is going to take this school over. So what started in the dirt ended up in this beautiful facility with great leadership and a great future in Franklin Township.”

Ravally spoke of Bevere’s work in helping get the school ready for this year’s opening day.

Bevere, he said, “put forth an extraordinary effort to make sure this building opened on time. Not only did it open on time, but it really has some of the nicest features and functions that a school can have, and it was her expertise that brought that to light.”

“Our playground, Nicole worked very hard with the design tea to design it,” he said. “Our classroom spaces, Nicole worked very hard to design that. Not only did she work hard to design it, but then she worked with our business office to order the furniture, and then she rolled up her sleeves and she helped to unload trucks and set furniture up and build it.”

“She absolutely was the right person for this job and is a perfect fit not only for this school but for the type of project that we took on,” he said.

Bevere thanked the Board of Education, staff and her family for helping her.

Jeanne Perantoni, the architect who helped design the school, said it was her firm’s hope that the school would act as a teacher.

Noting that the school has a number of environmentally sustainable features, she said, “We want that to be part of the education, so that kids can be teaching their parents how to save energy, what’s the benefit of natural light, of indoor air quality.”

Following the comments, the group went outside for the ribbon-cutting, which was done by Board of Education president Nancy LaCorte.


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