McCarthy returned to the post on Thursday with Seitz Elementary being one of his stops. He remembered being in attendance the day Gates committed to obtaining funding for the school. “I was riding with him in the truck on the way over here and I was on the phone most of the time because we were in the final touches talking to lawyers and the finance organizations within the Department of Defense. We talked right before he went out on stage to talk to the ( military ) families where he going to make that commitment.”
McCarthy added that Gates’ pledge was accomplished. ” He had said there will be a shovel in the ground before the summer of 2011, and sure enough nine months later it got done.”
McCarthy toured the school on Thursday where he met with students, teachers and administrators. He was accompanied by U.S> Senator Jerry Moran, USD 475 leaders and other local military and civilian leaders.
During discussions with the students McCarthy visited classrooms, the library and the lunchroom as well as the commons area. He learned about topics ranging from the fact that Seitz Elementary School is a green school where a rain water study is under way now to the focus on quality learning and development of social skills. And the Acting Secretary of the Army learned from one student that the lunches served at the school were a highlight as well.
The groundbreaking for Seitz Elementary School was held on May 19, 2011. The school opened with 680 students on Aug. 15, 2012 and the formal ribbon cutting was held on September 14, 2012. The school is named after the late ( Lt. Gen. ) RIchard Seitz. He was an active supporter of Geary County schools following his 35-year military career.
Today the current capacity of the school is 675 students.
McCarthy’s schedule at Fort Riley also included visits with 1st Infantry Division and Fort Riley leaders and troops.