By Steve Woodward
When Moore County Schools put an aging Aberdeen Primary School on the sales block, focus naturally was on who would bid for the seven-acre parcel and its structures.
Apparently, Moore County Schools administrators never contemplated what would become of the contents inside the school, everything from furniture, to educational supplies, to janitorial supplies.
A sale was closed last April between MCS and Sandhills homebuilder Ron Jackson (photo nearby). The Pilot reported his offer of $400,000 did not attract a competing bidder during a three-month process.
Under terms of the deal, Jackson is prohibited from erecting another school. He says he plans to build homes after razing the old school building, but he is renovating the gymnasium. It will re-open in the fall as Freedom Hall, an intended community events facility.
Meanwhile, tables, chairs, rugs and supplies, paid for by Moore County taxpayers, were abandoned. Jackson says he has no idea as to the value of what was left behind. He is not selling any of it. He has been giving it away to churches, private schools and charitable organizations.
The tale thus has a happy ending. But we are left contemplating why Moore County Schools apparently has no process to sell or relocate furnishings when it sells a school property. We must conclude that this saga represents the classic definition of financial negligence on full display.