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District to break ground on early childhood center addition

East Grand Rapids — An expansion of Woodcliff Early Childhood Center is expected to start at the end of the month, kicking off the first of the improvement projects outlined in East Grand Rapids Public Schools’ voter-approved November 2023 bond proposal.

The district is eyeing a groundbreaking date of March 30 to start work on the roughly $7.5 million, 11,000-square-foot WECC addition, which will bring five new classrooms and one new community room to the building, said Assistant Superintendent of Finance and Operations Anthony Morey.

With the addition, the district aims to augment the WECC space to meet community demand.

“All classrooms will be for preschool, early childhood special education and childcare services,” Morey said. “These rooms will also allow us to greatly reduce our waitlists and serve more community members.”

He added that the new rooms will allow the WECC gym, which has been functioning as a classroom, to be freed back up for its intended use. 

Morey said WECC will operate as normal during the construction process, and students will not be displaced as a result of the work. However, he said the project will lead to some “added parking strain,” as workers will have to take up some of the on-street spots normally used by the community.

The start date coincides with spring break to allow workers to get some additional work done when students are out of the building, Morey said.

The new addition is slated to open in August 2025.

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Riley Kelley
Riley Kelley
Riley Kelley is a reporter covering Cedar Springs, Grand Rapids, East Grand Rapids and Sparta school districts. An award-winning journalist, Riley spent eight years with the Ludington Daily News, reporting, copy editing, paginating and acting as editor for its weekly entertainment section. He also contributed to LDN’s sister publications, Oceana’s Herald-Journal and the White Lake Beacon. His reporting on issues in education and government has earned accolades from the Michigan Press Association and Michigan Associated Press Media Editors. Riley’s early work in journalism included a stint as an on-air news reporter for WMOM Radio, and work on the editorial staff of various student publications. Riley is a graduate of Grand Valley State University. He originally hails from western Washington.


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