A crowd of around 200 gathered Friday morning to celebrate the opening of the Sisters of Mercy Early Learning Center located at the corner of Clay and Howard Streets.
The 8,300 square foot center will bring children, from infant to three years of age, together into ten class rooms.
The center was funded strictly through donations and was constructed by Fordice Construction. Local businessman John H. Heggins chaired the committee that oversaw construction that stayed very close to schedule, despite weather challenges and COVID.
The center will also bear the name of Sherry Scott who was a graduate of St. Francis Xavier Academy. Scott went on to serve as a Mayor in Georgia, as well as being recognized for various contributions to numerous civic causes. She and her husband Sam were in attendance and were awarded the inaugural award for service and support of the Catholic Schools.
Bishop Joseph Kopacz was on hand to offer both the invocation and the dedication of the facility.
Natalie Burke in her last official act as Senior class president spoke to the crowd about the value of her education in the Catholic School system and what the center will mean to generations to come.
Mayor George Flaggs Jr. and Margaret Gilmer, chairwoman of the Economic Development Foundation both echoed how important centers of this level are in recruitment of both business and business professionals to this community.
Mary Margaret Edney, VCS board member and an alumnus, gave an interesting perspective on the history of the Sisters of Mercy, detailing how the first school in this area was in established by six nuns in the 1860’s. She continued by detailing how Mercy Hospital came to be.
Kristi Smith, who serves as Director of Development for the Catholic Schools and has been serving as Capital Campaign Chair spoke to the crowd about the impact of continuing the legacy.
The center is amazing on the inside and we encourage you to seek an opportunity to see for yourself what a positive environment it will be for young people.
We at VDN offer our congratulations to all involved in constructing this wonderful addition to our community.See a typo? Report it here.