Santa is bringing brand-new classrooms to fourth- and fifth-graders at Nicholasville Elementary School this Christmas.
The iconic school at 414 W. Maple St. is undergoing a comprehensive renovation this year. The first phase of the project involves the back wing of the building. Students in the first three grades are attending school at an off-site primary center this year; the fourth and fifth grades have been in the front of the building in the fall and will move to the new classrooms for the spring, when phase two begins work on the front.
“It’s just a constructional shift from the back of the building to the front, an instructional shift from the front of the building to the back,” chief operating officer Jimmy Adams said.
The oldest part of the school was constructed in 1943, with additions in 1950 and 1987 and a secure vestibule added in 2009. The $9 million project will be completely finished in time for the start of school in fall 2013.
The gym, cafeteria and library have been in use throughout the fall and will continue to be used in the spring; renovations on those areas are scheduled to occur during the summer when students are not in the building.
Teachers have been in the new classrooms early this week to start setting up, and fourth- and fifth-grade students were scheduled to get a sneak peak of their new space Wednesday, Adams said Tuesday afternoon. After students leave Wednesday, furniture for the new classrooms will be moved in.
The project has had few hiccups — with a few negative change orders canceled out by some savings — and is proceeding on schedule.
“The classrooms, hallways and everything will be ready with floor tiles in,” Adams said. “I think the students are a little bit excited about getting to see it also, because we’re going to try and take them down to see what the classrooms are going to look like and get them not acclimated to it but at least introduced to what the classrooms are going to be.”
The first three grades of Nicholasville Elementary are being housed this year in the unrenovated portion of the Jessamine Early Learning Village building at 851 Wilmore Road.