Chatham County Opens New Middle School
(01/07/2011)

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — The Chatham County School District officially opened its newest school, Margaret B. Pollard Middle School, on January 3. The opening of the new campus allowed the 480 students and 50 faculty and staff members to reunite after being split between two schools while construction was completed.

The school district is actively pursuing LEED Gold certification for Margaret B. Pollard Middle School, which would make it the first LEED Gold certified middle school in the state, according to a release from Chatham County Schools.

The facility also has key “green” features, including large windows for daylighting, solatubes to bring in exterior light, and motion detectors to sense the need for lighting.

The entirely geothermal building has heating and air-conditioning systems using ground-sourced water from 170 wells located 400 feet below the soccer field. Rooms in the school have HVAC units that act as condensing units.

Each classroom includes a SMART Board and a mounted projector to allow lessons to be taught using up-to-date technology. The high school-sized gymnasium is air-conditioned and has bleachers on both sides of the court.

The 120,000 square-foot school sits on a 31-acre development on the edge of the Briar Chapel development in northeastern Chatham County. The new facility features a large “gallery” at the main entrance, leading to a hallway that connects the school’s three classroom wings.

The school serves grades six through eight, and is named for a county native and Commissioner from 1994 -2004 who passed away in Sept. 2009.

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