SARALAND, AL (January 6, 2017) -- The Saraland City School District celebrated the first day of classes at the newly constructed Saraland Early Education Center (SEEC) on January 4, 2017. The SEEC is a 65,750 square foot facility with 29 classrooms, located near the Elysian Fields neighborhood on Celeste Road. The 26-acre property on which the school was built was donated by Mr. and Mrs. Jon Lieber.
The SEEC houses Saraland’s pre-school, kindergarten, and first grade students. The facility is equipped with amenities designed to specifically accommodate early learners and their unique developmental needs as well as allow teachers to focus on specific learning goals for these students.
Remarking on the timely opening of the school, Dr. Milner, Superintendent of Saraland City Schools, expressed thanks to the many people who served a vital role in ensuring the facility opened as scheduled. Dr. Milner summed up his thoughts, “All the sacrifices over the past three years were worth it when students’ smiles filled the building as they entered their new school.”
After moving over the holidays, teachers are excited about beginning 2017 in the new school. “The SEEC will provide a unique learning experience for young learners and prepare students for educational success as they advance in the school system,” said Katie Scoggins, kindergarten teacher. “This foundation will continue to be built upon as the student advances in their academic career.”
Rakesia Wilson, first grade teacher, agreed. “The SEEC allows teachers to foster a love for lifelong learning in our young students. We can focus on meeting their needs, and we will be able to provide educational opportunities in a more age-appropriate environment that will allow students to develop to their fullest potential,” she said.
To help students transition, the school hosted a “move-in” day on January 3rd to provide students and their families an opportunity to visit classrooms, drop off school supplies, tour the school, and complete updated transportation forms. Students received a free SEEC spirit shirt and Yellowhammer Coffee was on-hand to help support the SEEC Parent Teacher Organization.
The SEEC is one component of the Saraland City School System (SCSS) Capital Plan, which is partially funded through a 7.5 mil ad valorem tax that was voted into place by the community in January 2015. Another component of the Capital Plan, which demonstrates, “campaign promises made and promises kept,” was the addition of five buses to the Saraland fleet to solely transport these young students.
Amy Pippins, Director of Special Services, reiterated, “We are committed to providing the highest quality education to all students, including those with special needs. This new facility supports our highly trained, dedicated staff in meeting the needs of our children with disabilities. We are excited to continue our tradition of educational excellence in this state of the art facility.”
Brittany Mullins, parent of a kindergartener, is thrilled about the addition of the SEEC stating her daughter is really excited. She continued, “As a mom, I believe my daughter will benefit from the closer knit atmosphere of being with children her age. It is a wonderful opportunity, geared toward the younger children, which is great, especially for children’s first experience in a school environment. Students are excited about the playground and the features of the building designed for little people. For this age, it’s literally the “small things that make a big difference.”