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Principal Richard Carter

Talley ready for a comeback

The building housing Talley Middle School opened the same year that Veterans Stadium did. The South Philadelphia sports arena is now a parking lot. The Talley building in Ramblewood will reopen in late August after a year's renovation as a state-of-the-art school.

"This is something of an experiment. We did a lot of things in this school that have never been done in Delaware," said John Read, construction manager for the Brandywine School District.

Innovations range from a cafeteria designed to resemble a food court in a shopping mall to energy-efficient heating and cooling units to  built-in security cameras that cover literally every square foot.

Richard Carter, who became principal in April, said that "cutting-edge amenities" are intended to provide students and their teachers a quality of life that will support and encourage learning.


Workmen move classroom furnishings into the building. With basic construction completed ahead of schedule, the  school district was able to take possession about a month earlier than originally anticipated.

Despite increases in the price of construction material having outpaced the state-allowed 3% annual escalation in cost estimates, Read said the $11 million project not only will come in under budget but has been augmented by including such things as all new windows.

Availability of the Burnett building in north Wilmington to serve as a home-away-from-home during the past academic year enabled the district to let contracts which did not require trades contractors to work around an operating school, he explained.

Bancroft Construction Co. was construction manager.


The traditional school cafeteria will be a memory as separate serving lines will offer  students a choice of a hot meal, soup and sandwich or salad. The large room is designed to be a multi-tasker. It can be converted into a place to hold meetings, conduct in-service professional training for teachers and host like functions,