What to know when heading back to Fayette schools


The new school year is almost here. The 2022-23 year begins on Thursday, August 4, and excitement is filling the air.

For the first time in many years, the county is celebrating a new school building with the grand opening of the new J.C. Booth Middle School.

The new school will provide a fresh and spacious learning environment, replacing the current building that is over 40 years old and lacks the space to accommodate the more than 1,100 students who attend the school, officials said.

Situated on 37 acres, the new J.C. Booth Middle is 180,654 square feet and has a core infrastructure and classroom capacity to accommodate up to 1,400 students. It features wide hallways for ease of movement between classes, and has 57 regular classrooms and 18 science labs, along with an art room, band room, orchestra room, drama room, two technology labs, a family and consumer science lab, and a business lab. All totaled, there are 89 instructional units in the building.

There is also a media center, cafeteria, and large commons area for students to interact, as well as a gym that seats 1,290 persons.

The construction of the approximately $46 million school was approved by the Fayette County Board of Education on November 4, 2019. Clearing of the building site began April 2020. Initially set to open December 2021, completion of the school was slowed due to a global supply chain storage of materials needed to finish construction.

The old J.C. Booth will become the new home for the Center of Innovation, a campus offering career and technical education (CTE) courses to prepare students to be college and career ready.

Here’s the news about students pick-up and drop-off at the new Booth.

Carriage Lane will be the only entrance/exit for all traffic and buses. Stagecoach Road will NOT be used for any traffic flow at this time due to construction.

Booth school hours will be 8:10 – 3:10. Drop-offs are allowed as early as 7:15. Officials say that since there is only one entrance and exit at this time, parents will need to plan for traffic backups and delays. You are encouraged to carpool as much as possible, as well as register your child for school bus transportation to help ease traffic and assist your child in arriving at school on time.

New faces will be leading the way at three schools this year.

Tosha Oliver will be principal at Sandy Creek High. Oliver, who most recently served as an assistant principal at Westlake High of Fulton County Schools since 2013, was approved as the school’s new principal by the Fayette County Board of Education at their July 11 meeting. She succeeds Richard Smith, who will be Coordinator of Students Services for Fayette County Public Schools.

David McBride takes the reins at North Fayette Elementary. McBride most recently served as the Virtual Academy Administrator for grades K-8 for Fayette County Public Schools. Among many roles in the county, he also previously was an assistant principal at Starr’s Mill High and Flat Rock Middle. Dr. Lisa Moore departed for career opportunities with another school system.

Bennett’s Mill Middle principal Dr. Marcus Broadhead resigned in mid-July to pursue other career goals. JP Ward, currently an assistant principal at Whitewater High School, will temporarily assume principal duties at Bennett’s Mill until a permanent administrator is named.

The Fayette County Board of Education approved a price increase for student meals for the 2022-2023 school year. The elementary school lunch price will be $3.00, and middle and high school will be $3.25. Breakfast will be $1.75 for all grade levels.

Families that are eligible for free and reduced meals are asked to apply by August 4 via www.myschoolapps.com. Assistance is available for breakfast/lunch and for home internet/device.

Rising sixth and eighth grade students who will be riding a school bus this year need to register for transportation service. Information regarding bus stops and pick up times will be sent to parents via an Infinite Campus message on August 1. Parents can also view this information on August 1 at the following link: https://www.fcboe.org/Page/336 .

Meet the teacher will be held at all county schools on Tuesday, August 2, except Rising Starr Middle, which will be held August 1. Contact your school for further details.