RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — City officials got a sneak peek Wednesday at the new George Mason Elementary School in Richmond. It will replace the old school with new 21st century technology and safety.

Mayor Levar Stoney, Richmond Superintendent Jason Kamras and School Board Member Cheryl Burke got a first look at the school, which is still under construction. 

“This dream is finally coming true. It’s been a long time coming,” said Burke. “I’m so delighted that every child will have the opportunity to be in a beautiful, modern facility.”

There has been a lot of discussion over the status of the old George Mason Elementary School, which sits in a historic part of Church Hill.

Last month, a Richmond Preservation Panel granted Richmond Public Schools permission to tear down all of the old school, except for the oldest remaining section.

The school system wants to replace it with tennis and basketball courts, a playground and sports field.

“It’s my hope that the City Council gives this a thorough review, and there’s ways that we can go about preserving the history here, but I think the utmost priority is to ensure that our kids have green space alongside a very, very high quality facility too,” said Mayor Stoney.

For now, there is a lot of excitement over the new school, including from Principal Kimberly Cook.

“I’m super excited to get into the wonderful new school. It’s amazing, I can tell it’s amazing already,” said Cook.

The new school will open in fall 2020 to about 750 students.