Construction begins on new Fortville Elementary


A few years ago, the Mt. Vernon Community Schools Board came up with a plan to make new additions to the district in response to the increasing population of the school community.

A Nov. 30 groundbreaking ceremony on Nov. 30 marked the start of construction for the new Fortville Elementary School and Mt. Vernon transportation building at 1806 W. Ind. 234 in Fortville.

According to Supt. of Mt. Vernon Schools Jack Parker, planning for the project started in 2019.

“We were looking at the projected growth of our district, and we knew that we were going to need more capacity,” Parker said.

Community input helped determine that a new building was needed and that the school district wanted to organize the grades differently. There are currently three schools that are kindergarten through fifth grade, one school is sixth through eighth grade and a high school for ninth through 12th grade.

Parker said fifth-grade students would be moved from the elementary schools and sixth grade would be moved from the middle school. The current Fortville Elementary School will be converted to an intermediate school by the fall of 2025, where fifth- and sixth-grade students will attend classes.

Parker said the reorganization would give the other schools more space for growth.

Mt. Vernon Community Schools Board President Kellie Freeman said construction of the new school is part of “a plan in place” to manage future growth within the school district.

“We may not be able to stop the growth that’s coming to this part of the county, but having a plan in place to maintain our facilities and monitor our growth is incredibly important,” Freeman said. “We can be prepared to engage and educate any student that comes to our school system.”

Fortville Elementary School Principal Vince Edwards said the new school will increase opportunities for the school district.

“We want to make sure there is something for every student,” Edwards said. “That way, we can help every student grow and reach their potential.”