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The Daily Tar Heel

New Carrboro Middle School Dedicated

The school, partially funded by the 1996 bond referendum, cost Orange County taxpayers $19.4 million to build.

Walking into the new school, the visitors immediately sensed excitement surrounding the building and people.

Parents were selling Smith Spirit clothing, the seventh-grade band's music drifted through out the hall, and people admired the brightly tiled floors, modern cafeteria and technologically advanced atmosphere.

Located behind Chapel Hill High School, the school opened its doors to students on Aug. 20 but was officially dedicated Sunday afternoon to Euzelle and R.D. Smith.

Between them, the couple worked 75 years in various roles within the community's secondary education program.

In their speeches, both thanked family members and friends who supported them throughout their careers. "We never thought our work in education over the past 70 plus years would culminate in an honor of this magnitude," Euzelle Smith said.

School Principal Valerie Reinhardt addressed the attentive audience made up of students, parents, family and officials.

"When someone walks into this school, you immediately get the sense that our school is different," she said.

Reinhardt also said the school has been nationally recognized for conserving resources.

The Smiths' daughter, Patrice Wall, stressed to the audience that her parents have made a significant mark over their 75 years in Chapel Hill-Carrboro schools. She urged students to "embrace the Smiths' philosophy on education."

Surrounded by family and school board members, the Smiths accepted a plaque and portrait to be permanently hung on the wall at the end of the ceremony.

Seventh-grader Kyle Slosek, who guided audience members through tours of the school following the ceremony, said he likes the school.

"My favorite part of the school is the technology," he said. "I like how you can turn off the lights and still see where you are going because of all the outside light."

Eighth-grader Berkely Gadbaw said, "This is a great school, and students as a new group will have to work hard to build their own community, one that will follow the teachings the Smiths have presented."

The City Editor can be reached

at citydesk@unc.edu.

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