ST. FRANCISVILLE — Land-clearing operations are underway for the construction of a new Bains Elementary School on property adjoining West Feliciana Middle School.

The School Board approved a $720,000 contract on July 21 with Stuart and Company, a Baton Rouge general contracting firm, to clear 15 acres of a larger tract the board purchased last year for the new school.

The contractor also will do grading and erosion control work on the site and prepare the building pads for the contractor selected to build the school buildings.

The board also approved the final construction documents for the school, which is being financed with proceeds from a $52.6 million bond issue that voters approved in May 2019.

The project’s construction manager expects that bids will be accepted next month and the board will award a construction contract in September. The schedule for construction calls for the buildings to be completed in June 2022.

The school will replace the existing Bains Elementary, located a short distance away on Bains Road.

The construction bid package includes two alternates for additional work: building covered canopies for two lines of bus and car traffic for loading and unloading students, instead of one each, and enhancements to the playground equipment.

The board also set a special Aug. 4 meeting to open bids for construction of a new parking lot at West Feliciana High School, which will be located near a new gym on the drawing board with other improvements at the high school.

Board members also approved a contract with Quality Engineering and Surveying for a traffic study in the area of the schools at U.S. 61 and Bains Road north of St. Francisville.