HOUSTON COUNTY, Ga. — More families moving to Houston County means more students filling up the schools.
"We're from Florida and my husband's job brought us here to Bonaire. We lived in Warner Robins, but when we bought a house, we knew we were coming to Bonaire because the schools were great," Bonaire Elementary School parent Cynthia Smith said.
Next year, her youngest will go to the new Bonaire Primary School headed by Elgin Mayfield.
"I really applaud our school system for recognizing that they needed another school in the Bonaire area," Mayfield said.
Construction is moving right along for the new Bonaire Primary School on Thompson Mill Road.
Principal Mayfield says they'll serve around 500 to 600 students, which will help alleviate the nearly-900 that currently attend Bonaire Elementary.
"Bonaire Elementary School is, if not the biggest, it's one of the biggest schools in our smallest buildings. It allows for that growth, because -- I'll be honest with you -- if Bonaire Elementary were to grow much more without support, I don't know where they'd put them," Mayfield said.
"It would be really great to have classrooms that aren't overpopulated because when there's less student to teacher ratio, you're going to get better one-on-one with your kids and you're going to be able to service them better," Smith said.
This will be Mayfield's second time as the head of a new school.
He was principal of Langston Road Elementary when opened 5 years ago.
"You're going to have a principal who is completely focused on pre-K, kindergarten, 1st and 2nd grades, and it allows me to not be so spread and to really be honed-in on what the teachers are doing, what the classes are doing," Mayfield said.
"Dr. Mayfield, he's ready to go, he's excited, and so I think it's just going to be new and fresh and lots of space for growth," Smith said.
The $21 million project came from ESPLOST funds. In addition to that, the county's SPLOST plans include over $6 million to widen Thompson Mill Road.
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