Berkeley Glenn Elementary to celebrate 50th on Nov. 4

Teachers and administrators from Berkeley Glenn Elementary School gather in anticipation of the school's 50th anniversary celebration next month. From left are teachers Diane Lundstrom and Katherine Dameron, Principal Leola Burks and teacher Alycia Knicely. 

And to longtime teachers and administrators, the school is much the same. Other than air conditioning, some painting and bathroom remodeling, the original brick structure that opened in 1968 remains.

It's still a neighborhood school where parents walk their kids to start the day. And with an enrollment of 263, it's a school where teachers and administrators know the students.

"All teachers get to know all students," said Principal Leola Burks, the sixth principal of Berkeley Glenn. She said there is a lot of collaboration inside the school and a sense of community. Multiple generations of families have attended Berkeley Glenn.

Reading specialist Alycia Knicely has the distinction of having attended Berkeley Glenn and taught her entire career at the elementary school.

Knicely said the "quality gets better each day." She said there are more parent volunteers now, and a greater diversity of students. She said the Hispanic students attending Berkeley Glenn learn the English language and offer a different culture to the school's American-born students.

"Our mission is still what is best for our kids," Knicely said.

On Nov. 4, the 50th anniversary festivities start at 2 p.m. Erika Smith, the at-large member of the Waynesboro School Board, said alumni of the school will attend, as will current and former superintendents of the Waynesboro Schools. Members of the Waynesboro School Board as well as current Berkeley Glenn students and staff are also expected to attend.

The school is named after the late Berkeley Glenn, who served as superintendent of the Waynesboro Schools for more than two decades from 1947 to 1973. Members of Glenn's family from Highland County will attend the celebration, Smith said. As part of the celebration, a time capsule will be buried.

The school has been one of the Waynesboro Schools' consistently meeting accreditation standards from the Virginia Department of Education. 

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