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Vacant building might become private school

By Kim Walter -- kwalter@nvdaily.com

FRONT ROYAL -- Dian Schmiedicke has requested a conditional use permit to convert 6294 Browntown Road, most recently a doctor's office, into a private school enrolling between 20 and 25 students.

The Warren County Planning Commission approved the proposed request at their meeting last week so that a public hearing on the issue could be advertised.

Schmiedicke, an Association Montessori International certified primary teacher, said she would like to open the school's doors this fall to children ranging from ages 3 to 12.

Planning and Zoning Director Taryn Logan said the structure was built in the 1970s, and though zoned agricultural, has been through several commercial uses. However, she said that the health department has no records of the property's septic system. Logan pointed out to commission members that the septic would need to be uncovered to be sure it could handle the proposed use.

Logan also said that the Virginia Department of Transportation had minor comments.

Schmiedicke, who will be leasing the property, said she would like "plan for growth" at the school, and hopefully the health department would assist her in that.

Logan said the septic should be verified before a public hearing would be held.

If it is approved, the private school would educate children aged 3 to 6 using the "Montessori Method," and then educate children aged 6 to 12 using a classical liberal arts curriculum, according to Schmiedicke.

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