WACO, Texas (FOX 44) – The groundbreaking on the new G.W. Carver middle school brought a large crowd including school leaders, city leaders, and even some special alumni. 

It was a day of celebration as these G.W. Carver High School alumni along with members of the community, school board , city leaders and even students attended the groundbreaking for the new campus.

After last year’s fire claimed the historic building, alumni say this is the beginning of a new legacy.

“Carver and it’s legacy will live on,” Ruth Jackson Class of 1962 said. “So many people in our community are excited about it, those who didn’t even attend carver. Carver is like a legacy within our community, and people just know if you went to carver you could, if you went to Carver you alright!”

Dr. Susan Kincannon shared the rich history of the school dating back to 1956 when it served grades first through 12th.

Also sharing accomplishments such as the marching band winning $1,000 in a big competition in 1967.

The new school will stand in the same location giving 1,000 students the opportunity to take part in modern day learning, while keeping its history thanks to the special alumni historical committee.

“Because of their work Carver’s traditions will continue to create memories and meaning for generations of students,” Dr.Susan Kincannon said.

Historical Committee Chairwoman Ruth Jackson says most people don’t know why the school was named G.W. Carver and it’s their duty to keep the legacy going.

“George Washington Carver was the intent behind that,” Jackson said. “There was a black man, a black person who had so much impact on the school and so much impact on us.”

Charlene Lewis the first graduate of the school when it was still considered a High School says she was there when they opened the original school, and is happy to be here for the second.

“I have two things about carver. I am a graduate of Carver, but I’m also a teacher. I came back and taught at carver,” Lewis said. “So that really makes me feel wonderful to see this is going up.”

The alumni gathered in a group singing the school song, with hopes that the panther spirits stay strong for generations to come.

The new school is set to be complete by fall 2023.