Randolph County school district proposes new middle school

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ARCHDALE, N.C. -- The Randolph County school district says it needs a new middle school. Archdale-Trinity Middle School and the sixth-grade school that feeds into it, Braxton Craven, are overcrowded.

Superintendent Stephen Gainey says building a new middle school would fix the problem by eliminating Braxton Craven completely and dividing students into two fully functioning sixth- through eighth-grade schools.

"The time is now to realign this community,” Gainey said.

Someone donated the land next to Trinity High School to build the new school that is expected to cost around $26 million. Gainey says it's a good investment because if the district kept Braxton Craven Middle School, it would have to do millions of dollars of renovations there anyway.

The new school would also solve other problems. Right now students in this area come together for middle school, but are later divided when going to high school.

"I've been a middle school principal and I've been a high school principal,” Gainey said. “When you go to middle school together and then you split away there are so many activities -- band, chorus, athletics, clubs -- just really can start causing problems. You just want to keep kids with their peers and keep those relationships and continue to develop."

Right now the superintendent says they are working to get support from the community for the new school. The district will have to work with elected officials to figure out where the $26 million would come from.

Anyone with questions about the potential project can come get a tour of ATMS and talk to the superintendent on Jan. 24 from 5:30-7 p.m.