Suspense: The Name of the New South County Middle School Is...
The School Board voted 11-1 on it Thursday night.
South County Middle School it is.
Last night the Fairfax County School Board, swayed by overwhelming community opinion, voted 11-1 to name the middle school "South County Middle School." The name was chosen after two community surveys.
Mount Vernon District School Board Member Dan Storck made the motion.
"I couldn't be happier and prouder of the community an the people I represent," he told Patch after the vote. "That we were able to overcome almost insurmountable odds to bring the building and naming of this school to fruition, to provide a school that will be a home to generations of students is a testament that the Mount Vernon District doesn't mess around."
Marsha Manning is the South County Middle School principal. "I think the name will connect the students to the County and to the high school," she said. "We are really looking forward to building an institution of learning and focusing on how we are going to meet the needs of students."
Christine Morin, co-chair of the South County Middle School Solutions Group, emphasized the importance of the South County name in the public comment period of the meeting.
"When we all cheered together this past fall when [South County High School] linebacker Devin VanDyke ran into the end zone for a game-winning touchdown, the crowd roared 'We are South County!'," she said. "When South County Secondary School reverts back to a high school, it will share sports fields and even some teachers with the new middle school. It will become a campus-like environment with a symbiotic relationship unlike that of any other high school and middle school in the County - creating a shared South County educational experience from seventh grade to graduation."
The $21.95 million South County Middle School will open this fall. Other names considered for the site:
- Doris Stevens Middle School
- Nike Middle School
- Harold J. Wilson Middle School
- Dr. Theodor Seuss Geisel Middle School
- George A. Malcolm Middle School
At-large school board member Ryan McElveen said his vote was influenced by Morin's statements. "Tonight, I guess we are all South County," he said.
Lorton's heritage will not suffer because of the school name. "The suffragette movement will be honored nearby at Occoquan Park," said Morin, who is also a senior aide to Mount Vernon District Supervisor Gerry Hyland. "The middle school, which is located on a Nike Missile site, will have a Cold War display to help students better understand the history of the area. The adaptive reuse for the prison provides a historical backdrop for our entire community as we continue to create the new history of South County."
This week, Patch conducted its own poll on the naming of the middle school. Check out the results!
On May 2, the school Parent Teacher Student Organization will elect its officers at 7:00 p.m. in the South County Secondary School library.
What do you think of the name?