Pender county schools have been coping with an issue of overcrowding for quite some time now, but one high school is getting some breathing room. Tom Roper of the Pender County Board of Education said, "We have 1100 kids in a 600-700 capacity school, so you can just imagine the nightmare we have to deal with." Topsail High School students are packed like sardines, in a facility built to hold half of the current student body. School officials were forced to bring in mobile classrooms and use storage space just to fit everyone within the walls. But, change is on the way as the students will move into their new facility to begin the second semester, and Pender County can't wait. Topsail High Principal Marcus Skipper said, "Just the space alone, we aren't going to be on top of each other, I think it will enhance the culture." Students and faculty will move into the new facility for the second semester, starting January 5th. Parents are excited, too. Lorrie Luhring said, "We are thrilled to death that everybody worked so well. The buzz is, thank goodness it's here." Right now, the theatre arts class is practicing their winter musical, The Wizard of Oz, in the cafeteria. When they move into the new school, these aspiring thespians will have a full blown theatre. Topsail’s auditorium is the first true auditorium that has been built in the Pender County school systems, in over 70 years. This new facility was made possible by a bond referendum passed in 1995. Board members, county commissioners, and parents who toured the facility said the new school is a good example of tax payers’ money hard at work.
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