Bishop Marshall School plans to expand
Bishop John A. Marshall School in Morrisville has announced plans to expand its current building to include a new early childhood education center and after school program. The school, located on Laporte Road right at the bypass intersection of Route 100 and Old Route 100, has received a generous donation from Howard Manosh that will enable the construction and furnishing of the new wing.
The new addition will be added on to the north end of the current building where the school’s current pre-kindergarten through grade four is located. The addition will include two 900-square- foot classrooms, a kitchen for program use, office and teacher space, storage and a 1,500- square-foot multi-purpose room that will be used for early childhood physical education and movement. The multi-purpose room will also serve as the new centerpoint for the school’s after school program.
“Our admissions inquiries requesting information and screening for pre-kindergarten aged children and younger have increased significantly over the last two years,” said Jennifer Nordenson, the school’s vice principal and director of enrollment and marketing. “Our current pre-kindergarten classroom was originally designed when the school was built in 2000 as the teachers’ lounge. We converted the space into a pre-kindergarten classroom in 2007. Due to licensing regulations and the current size of the classroom, we are only able to enroll a maximum of 10 students in that classroom. Ten students is still a very tight fit for that classroom and we have been wanting to expand for some time now. This expansion was really just a wish list item; it just wasn’t possible until we met with Mr. Manosh and he made this dream come to life for us.”
The school hopes to add on to its current program by also opening up a second pre-kindergarten program for 3 ½ – 4 year olds. This second pre-kindergarten program will be ready for the start of the 2020-2021 school year; however, the school is working hard to open it sooner.
“Some within our community have asked why we would not consider expanding to open a high school, which is a great question,” said Carrie Wilson, head of school. “At this point, our data indicates that the need is greatest with our younger population. Also, when talking with Mr. Manosh, we agreed that getting students enrolled as soon as possible is a wonderful way to boost our community by graduating students who are thoughtful, caring and Christian citizens. Mr. Manosh is a longtime supporter of Lamoille County and our school. We are beyond thrilled to be partnering with him to expand our offering to families of this region.”
“Lamoille County has been very good to me,” Manosh said. “Giving back to this community is very important to me.”
Current pre-kindergarten director and teacher Laurie Flaherty was overjoyed to hear this news. “This is such an exciting opportunity and generous gift to the young children and families in Lamoille County and its surrounding communities. There is a shortage of spaces open for full-day, full-time pre-kindergarten programs to help prepare our youngest learners for school and support working parents. Full-day pre-kindergarten allows teachers to address all the Vermont Early Standards to provide children ample time to play and to learn in all domain areas. Teachers also have more time to get to know children and to address their learning challenges early — saving money and resources over the long term and helping children to be successful later in school and in life.”
Architectural plans by Silver Ridge Design of Hyde Park have been completed and the permit process is underway. H.A. Manosh project manager, Kevin Amyot, plans to be breaking ground by June 1 with an anticipated center opening for the start of the 2019-2020 school year. H. A. Manosh Corporation will be handling all of the construction of the new addition, with supplies sourced from Country Home Center. Gary Nolan will be overseeing the site work on the project. Manosh is hopeful that area vendors will also want to match his generosity by helping with this project that focuses on growth and quality for the good of Lamoille County.
“This is such an incredible opportunity, I am still in disbelief that our dream of expanding the school is becoming a reality,” Wilson said. “Mr. Manosh believes in our mission and we will continue to inspire greatness in our students by providing them with the space they need to learn and grow.”
The school is currently accepting applications for enrollment for the 2019-2020 school year. Visit their web site at bjams.org or call 888-4758 to learn more.