Crumbling school breaks ground on new elementary school

State, county, and school leaders and students helped break ground for a new elementary school in Carlisle County, Kentucky, Monday. 

The group asked the state for years to get a new school. After facing design issues, not being up to code, and putting kids’ learning at risk, school leaders say getting a new school is long overdue.

The curtains, the cracks, and the open concept are all issues teacher Katy Eddleman struggles with to keep her class of fourth graders on task. She says building the school with an open concept was a mistake, but more than a mistake: the building isn’t up to code or conducive to learning.

"The major problem we have is not being divided off from other classrooms," Eddleman says.

Superintendent Jay Simmons says the news school is years in the making, and it could be what helps the school district and its students improve.

"Learning is the main thing. That’s the biggest difference," Simmons says.

The new school will be built on the playground there, but where the playground will go is yet to be decided.

Four walls: that’s what Eddleman is most excited about. But she says, more than the walls, it’s how the students helped get a new school. She says the students help write letters to try to persuade government officials. She says, above all, she’s proud the students learned invaluable lessons. "Perseverance and working hard towards a goal," says Eddleman.

The school district received a $7.3 million grant from the state. It’ll bond the rest of the money for the $11 million project. The district will demolish the old elementary school after the new school is completed. The state’s school facilities construction committee will help with costs to tear it down.

Simmons says building the new school will take 18 months, but they don’t have a start date yet for construction.

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