With the ringing of a historic bell, Penn Manor School District dedicated its new Hambright Elementary School Sunday before a crowd of more than 100 dignitaries and other guests gathered in the school’s bright, airy multipurpose room.
Millersville University President Dr. John Anderson was keynote speaker for the ceremony, which marked the opening of the first new elementary building in the district in more than 50 years. Hambright opened in August, replacing the old Hambright School on Temple Avenue that was built in 1936.
Building a new school “is no small feat in today’s economy,” Anderson told the crowd.
“There’s an element of risk involved in an undertaking of this size, but you were willing to take that risk to give your children every educational advantage you could think of,” he said.
He commended Penn Manor for incorporating music and art rooms in the building’s design at a time when some schools are cutting those subjects. He also had praise for the school’s “academic commons” areas — large, open instructional spaces in each of three wings.
“These areas were designed to address the need for 21st century learning skills, like technology and collaboration,” Anderson said. “Through this new facility and your vision for a high-quality education, you’ve given your children the gift of the future.’
Also at the ceremony were state and township officials, Penn Manor school board members, current and former Hambright students and staff and members of the public.
Hambright music teacher Lee Jordan played the National Anthem on his trumpet and led students and staff in the singing of “Hambright Leaders,” the school song.
Following the ceremony, guests toured the new school, which enrolls more than 500 students in kindergarten through grade six.