$20 million still needed to build new Uvalde elementary school after Robb tragedy

Still no date set for the demolition of the Robb Elementary School campus

UVALDE, Texas – Work is underway in Uvalde at the site of what will be a new elementary school.

This project stems from the tragedy at Robb Elementary in May 2022.

“We should have the cafeteria and the other areas done by next week. And so, once the pad is done, complete, then we’ll start looking at pouring concrete,” said Tim Miller, the executive director for the Uvalde CISD Moving Forward Foundation, while standing in front of the active construction site.

It’s a night and day difference between the site of the new Uvalde elementary school and how things looked five months ago at an emotional groundbreaking ceremony.

Heavy machinery packed the earth, laying the groundwork for the first school built in this district in decades.

The campus will be adjacent to Dalton Elementary School at Fourth and Leona streets.

“For example, Batesville is 94 years old. It has not been touched for renovations — significant renovations for many, many years,” Miller said.

The Uvalde CISD Moving Forward Foundation is creating the new campus, working alongside the architecture firm Huckabee to design the school that’ll meet the needs of the community with the latest in safety.

The project itself comes with a big budget of $60 million.

On Tuesday, John L Nau III and Silver Eagle Beverages donated $1 million.

“It’s overwhelming to be a part of this project in an amazing way,” said Katie Reynolds, director of corporate affairs for the company.

There’s still $20 million that needs to be raised for the project.

Although ground was broken in October, just a few months later in December, it was announced there was a delay in the construction.

At the time, Miller said the budget to build the new school was set at $55 million and the first bid came in at $64 million.

In January, the foundation decided to move forward with a new construction company, Satterfield and Pontikes.

“Public school is the center of a community, there’s no doubt about that. And to see the community support come out for this, which is a special project it’s really gratifying,” said John Marshall, the chief revenue officer with S&P.

At this point, the new elementary school does have a name, but a committee has been formed to come up with one.

The design of the school incorporated elements of the 21 lives lost at Robb Elementary on May 24, 2022.

From an oak tree in the library with 21 branches to their names written for all to see, the legacy of the 21 will be lasting.

“Our target date for substantial completion is September of 2025. And then, after we get the sign-off to get into the building, we’ll need to put the desks and other furniture fixture equipment,” Miller said.

From there, the district will make the decisions on when the school is ready for students and teachers.

As for the demolition of Robb Elementary, that decision is at the discretion of Uvalde CISD.

District officials are waiting on clearance from the Uvalde County District Attorney Christina Mitchell to move forward.

About the Authors

Leigh Waldman is an investigative reporter at KSAT 12. She joined the station in 2021. Leigh comes to San Antonio from the Midwest after spending time at a station in Omaha, NE. After two winters there, she knew it was time to come home to Texas. When Leigh is not at work, she enjoys eating, playing with her dogs and spending time with family.

Dale Keller is senior news photographer at KSAT-12.

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