Hundreds of people turned out Aug. 22 to celebrate the ribbon-cutting ceremony of Cheshire Elementary School, Olentangy Local Schools' 14th elementary school at 2681 Gregory Road.

Hundreds of people turned out Aug. 22 to celebrate the ribbon-cutting ceremony of Cheshire Elementary School, Olentangy Local Schools' 14th elementary school at 2681 Gregory Road.

Principal Justin Syroka said he looks forward to 2010-11 school year.

"I'm extremely excited about our school community. Students at Cheshire will be wild, wondering, imagining, learning and discovering," he said.

Superintendent Wade Lucas said the school - which was built on time and on budget - is an example of the district's goal of providing an "excellent quality education in an efficient manner."

In the past 20 years, the district has opened 20 schools and has grown into the 11th largest district in the state.

In the past seven years, the district has been the fastest-growing district in Ohio, Lucas said. For the past several years it has enrolled 1,000 new students per year, as it will when school resumes Aug. 25.

"Despite the dip in the economy, student enrollment growth hasn't slowed down one bit," Lucas said. "We're projecting that more than 16,000 students will walk through our doors (Aug. 25). That's more than 1,000 additional students since June and nearly 400 students more than we had initially projected."

The district received more than 4,000 teaching applications for the new school.

"We have the opportunity to bring in some of the most talented teachers in not only the state, but the nation," Lucas said.

The school is also an example of how the district is becoming more efficient with increased technology, Lucas said.

"The school has laptop carts instead of a stationary computer lab. That means we can better integrate computer work into the curriculum and have space for another classroom," Lucas said.

Cheshire Elementary School was constructed with funds from an $89.89-million bond package approved by voters in March 2008.

That bond package also provided the funds to build the Berkshire bus compound, which opened in February 2009; Freedom Trail Elementary School, which opened in August 2009; the addition to Olentangy High School, which was completed in December 2009; Olentangy Berkshire Middle School on Three B's and K Road in Galena and the district's 15th elementary school between Olentangy High School and Shanahan Middle School, both of which will open in 2011; as well as improvements at other facilities, technology, buses and textbooks, a district press release said.

The 22 acres the school sits on was donated to the district in 2007 by Dominion Homes, a district press release said. At that time, the land was valued at $476,000.