Archive for Wednesday, August 29, 2007

McLouth board hails fine arts wing

August 29, 2007

One long ribbon and several snips later, members of the McLouth Board of Education along with several key contributors officially opened the fine arts wing Thursday at McLouth High School.

"It turned out really well," said Mitchel Campbell, president of the McLouth School Board, who was also on the committee that helped plan the new expansion. "From what I've heard the kids really love it."

And they do love it, according to music instructor Jerome Johnson.

Johnson said he knows that the students are very thankful for the new space.

"When the students walked from the hallway and walked into the rooms they were stunned," Johnson said. "They said, 'Wow this is for us?' It was an amazing moment."

Thursday night's ceremony began with another ribbon cutting ceremony for the three new "Welcome to Mclouth" signs that were installed earlier this summer.

The wing actually has been open since before the beginning of school to allow teachers and students to move equipment into the new rooms. However, this was a chance for Superintendent Jean Rush to thank all parties for their involvement in the construction.

Rush said she especially was thankful to the teachers, Erin Scott in art, Michael Brandel in choir, and Johnson, for expanding their programs and creating "the best kind of problems we like to have, which is lack of space," Rush said.

Rush also thanked the board for its outlook into planning for the future of McLouth schools.

"There focus was not short term, but they needed to look long term even though we had immediate needs," she said.

She was also able to thank the community and the Bank of McLouth for their support as well as thank GLPM Architects and Kansas Building Systems for getting the expansion finished in time.

"I did not lose one moment of sleep because I knew you were worried enough for the both of us," Rush said to Bret Holstien of Kansas Building Systems.

This was also the first time some parents got a chance to see the $1.03 million expansion.

"It is awesome," said Kathy Edmond, mother of a McLouth High School junior, Chelsey Breshears, 16. "I'm from an era where everything was downstairs in one room. This school has changed so much in every way."

Breshears, who plays the bass drum and clarinet for the band, was happy to finally have enough room for individual instruments.

Even the teachers are still in amazement of the new rooms that include more acoustically suited ceilings and walls for the band room and easier to clean concrete floors in the art room.

"Boy, since we moved in Wednesday it's been such a whirlwind," Johnson said. "Until tonight I haven't even had a chance to see what it even looks like."

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