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After months of debate, school board agrees on George Wythe proposal

WRIC - ABC 8News
WRIC - ABC 8News
 2022-04-12

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RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – After months of debate, the Richmond Public School board has finally come to an agreement with Mayor Levar Stoney over the construction of a new George Wythe High School.

The school board voted to agree with Stoney’s proposal for an 1,800-seat George Wythe High School last night.

The 1,800-seat school capacity is between the 2,000-seat school the city initially supported and the 1,600-seat school the school board originally supported.

Previous coverage: Richmond School Board agrees on George Wythe proposal amid community frustration: ‘This is not a game of deal or no deal’

Several parents spoke at the school board meeting last night, explaining to board members that the population growth is there and a new George Wythe High needs to be built to avoid overcrowding, similar to what is happening at River City Middle School.

School board member Kenya Gibson suggested going back with the design for a 1,600-seat school, but later retracted the amendment.

School board member Mariah White was fed up at the meeting last night. “This has been going on too long. This is starting to be a bunch of foolishness here. So don’t make a note on why we should be changing from 16 to 18-hundred,” she said.

Before taking a vote, board members discussed topics surrounding what building a new George Wythe High would look like and current issues the school and its students face.

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School board member Stephanie Rizzi said transportation is definitely a concern she has.

“There are some students at Wythe currently who are waiting upwards of an hour for buses to take them home after school,” she explained at the board meeting. “Over the winter that meant that a lot of students were still sitting outside in the freezing cold or at nighttime.”

City council will vote on Stoney’s proposal on April 25. If approved, the city will transfer $7.3 million to begin the school’s construction.

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