Construction is expected to continue until 2026.
A committee came up with new names for Burnely-Moran and Johnson elementary schools, but the school board voted to come up with more options.
“This is a dramatic change. The public should have an opportunity on this,” said foundation president Linda Seaman.
The nonprofit Cultivate Charlottesville built its first school garden in 2010, and now two schools offer courses for credit on how to farm.
Albemarle initially tried to purchase CATEC to do major renovations and updates, but Charlottesville said no, citing concerns for its students’ continued access.
Teachers and other City School workers will soon negotiate contracts.
The schools were named for people who were leaders during the Jim Crow era of legal racial segregation.
The proposal was one of six legislative priorities, most of which aimed at addressing the school system’s ongoing staffing issues that have sourced back to before the pandemic.
“If we want to keep the best teachers we have in Albemarle County, we have to recognize that this is something we have to deal with,” said School Board member Graham Paige.
The School Board could vote on renaming the schools as soon as March.