While questions persist about whether Mayor Vince Gray will face charges related the 2010 shadow campaign to elect him, the administrators at Dunbar High School, at least, aren’t expecting Gray to be disgraced any time soon.

Gray, part of the Dunbar class of 1959, returned to his alma mater this afternoon to cut the ribbon on the sharp new campus. Along with its new pool, gym, and common area, the redesigned school features four academic groupings, including the Vincent C. Gray Ninth Grade Leadership Academy.

“All I can is ‘Wow, we are here,'” Gray told an audience in the school’s new theater.

The last incarnation of Dunbar High School, built in 1976, still stands next to the new school, and it figured prominently in the day’s speeches. Department of General Services Director Brian Hanlon joked about selling tickets to its eventual demolition, while city administrator Allen Lew talked about the mayor’s anguish over the now-empty building.

“I think the mayor got really emotional about how the original school was torn down and replaced with this thing that looks like a prison,” Lew said.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery