Cincinnati Country Day breaking ground on renovation project - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Cincinnati Country Day breaking ground on renovation project

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INDIAN HILL, OH (FOX19) -

Cincinnati Country Day School will break ground Thursday to renovate the Lower School.

The project is the result of a $3 million capital campaign. 

Fourth-graders toting shovels and wearing "hard hats" will help with the 9 a.m. groundbreaking. Also on hand will be Head of School Robert Macrae, Lower School Head Jennifer Aquino, Board of Trustees President Chip Pettengill and lead donors Peter and Betsy Niehoff, both 2005  Country Day graduates. 

Improvements will include a new entrance, resource room, administrative space, science room, parent meeting room, reading loft, commons stage and playscape. Work is expected to be finished by January. Upgrades to the heating and cooling systems, roof, windows and doors are already completed.

"Renovations to Country Day's Lower School building will create dynamic new spaces that will enhance the student experience and strengthen our sense of community," said Head of School Robert P. Macrae.  "Since the Lower School is where many of our students discover their passion for academics, it is important they have an environment that is highly conducive to learning." 

As part of the capital campaign, Aquino took the "Aquino Challenge," to help raise $100,000. Wearing a "got courage?" T-shirt, she held an animal, insect or reptile, selected by the fourth-grade class, every time a $10,000 goal was reached. 

Critters, all housed at the school, range from a rat to hissing cockroaches. Aquino, admittedly squeamish about these encounters, has held nine of them. At the groundbreaking Thursday, she'll take the final challenge – holding a garter snake for 20 seconds.

The Lower School includes 290 students in PreK/Montessori-Grade 4.

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