By Leah Schmalz
The history of Bain Elementary School is extensive, dating back 124 years. Last Thursday the school added another chapter to that rich story with a ribbon cutting ceremony for the newly constructed school building.
Principal John LeGrand reflected further on this history, emphasizing that the vision of John Bain in the 1800s, which led to the school’s establishment, is still being upheld today. “This new building does not mean that we’re starting over,” he said. “This new building simply means that we’re continuing that tradition of excellence that was created by the people that stood before us.”
The event was held in the gymnasium and featured student involvement and leadership. Fifth grade students kicked off the ceremony by leading the pledge of allegiance and introducing the principal. Mr. Clenney’s third grade class also performed a song composed by music teacher Noreen Hofmann, complete with clapping, hand motions, and creative lyrics. “The sky’s the limit when you act Bain proud,” rapped one of the students.
CMS Board of Education District 6 member Amelia Stinson-Wesley touched on the legacy of the school, noting that commissioner Mickey Ellington’s family has attended the school for five generations. “I’m really excited about having this new incarnation of Bain here,” she said. “With the technology in this building, with the talent and the passion of all of our teachers, with the drive and dedication of each of you that are students here, it will all guide us to the next generation of Bain Bobcats.”
Dr. Heath Morrison, the superintendent of Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools, spoke about the future of the students, using the analogy of a basketball game. “Here at Bain you have all of the things that you need to make sure that you’re going to be in position the rest of your life to take that winning shot,” he said. He also thanked the principals, teachers, support staff, community members, and parents for their efforts in support of the new building and the school as a whole.
The actual ribbon cutting elicited some laughter from those in attendance as LeGrand attempted to use the oversized cardboard scissors created for the occasion. Eventually he opted to cut the ribbon with a pair of real scissors instead, and the laughter gave way to applause.
After the ceremony, fifth grade student ambassadors provided tours of the two-story school building. The tours ended with a walk down the large staircase near the media center, where guests gathered for a reception of punch and cake.
Principal John LeGrand cuts the ribbon at the ceremony. Fifth graders Cameron Little and Karis Sustartours guided tours of the new Bain Elementary School building.Mr. Clenney’s third grade class performs a song written by music teacher Noreen Hofmann. PHOTOS BY LEAH SCHMALZ