UPDATED: Brentsville Supervisor Not Supporting any Specific Design for 13th High School

| June 9, 2016 | 0 Comments | Education
Image from above showing the side view of the new high school prototype.

Image from above showing the side view of the new high school prototype.

Updated: June 9, at 3:30 p.m. with a response from Chairman Ryan Sawyers. 

Brentsville Supervisor Jeanine Lawson (R) is not supporting any specific design for Prince William County’s 13th high school, which will be built in her district.

The school is scheduled to open in 2021.

An aide for Brentsville Supervisor Jeanine Lawson contacted Bristow Beat, Thursday morning, saying that despite what was said at the June 1 school board meeting, and subsequently reported upon by Bristow Beat, Lawson never said she was in support of the PRICE model for the high school.

At the June 1 school board meeting, Chairman Ryan Sawyers said that he corresponded with Lawson about the matter and found it ironic that she wanted the “nicer” school when she did not vote to fund the $8 million the schools expected from the county.

According to Lawson’s aide, Sawyers’ quote did not rightly express what Lawson had wrote to Sawyers.

In her email, Lawson said she supports adding additional capacity, but she does not advocate for any specific design for the school.

She wrote: “I fully support adding high school seat capacity. As to the actual design, it is the purview of the school board to make the decision on how to balance the seat capacity with the design and overall cost.”

Email from Jeanine Lawson to Ryan Sawyers.

Email from Jeanine Lawson to Ryan Sawyers.

Chairman Ryan Sawyers responded to Lawson’s email, explaining that from his perspective, wanting the added capacity to the high school is essentially the same as advocating for the PRICE Model.

That [distinction] is disingenuous at best unless Supervisor Lawson is suggesting that we scrap both models, delay the project, and come up with a third design.

There are only two designs on the table. One is less expensive with less seats and one is more expensive with more seats. She clearly stated in her email that she wanted more seats therefore the more expensive model.

He quipped that while he appreciates Supervisor Lawson’s interest in anxiously awaiting a ground breaking and the photo opportunity that will afford, “we must first make tough decisions regarding seating capacity and what we can afford.”

“Supervisor Lawson’s fight against the Stone Haven development means that the school system will have to pay for the land for the 13th high school,” he wrote.

He also claims Supervisor Lawson has also been critical of how much the school system kept in its reserves, and, pointed out she voted “for cutting the school system’s unanimously approved budget by $8.1 million.”

“Supervisor Lawson’s ‘let them eat cake’ attitude towards the other six magisterial districts may play well in Brentsville,” Sawyers said, “but I must consider the entire county when making my decisions.”

He goes on to say he is still undecided on the issue of whether he will approve the PRICE Model for the 13th High School.

“Proper funding of our schools would have made his decision much easier. Regardless of price per seat the PRICE model is more expensive than the already twice approved Battlefield model,” Sawyers said.

Prince William County Schools Director of Communications Phil Kavits said the PRICE design is on for action at the next school board meeting, June 15. The auditorium will have 1,200 seats.

© 2016, Bristow Beat. All rights reserved.

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