Last day of school means start of new construction at some Greater Clark County schools

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Classes ended today, which means the work is just beginning in Greater Clark County Schools. 

Seven campuses will see construction this summer amid public pushback on how the projects are funded. 

The last day of fourth grade brought Kinley Romans a final lesson, including a little bit of team building, a little bit of math -- and a lot of hustle. The 10-year-old knows Jonathan Jennings Elementary School will look much different when she returns from summer break. 

"Our room floods, so it will be better, so the mold won't be in the carpet," she said.

It's part of a wave of summer construction for Greater Clark County Schools. 

"We've got about seven different school sites where we'll be doing anything from new carpeting, new HVAC systems," said Dr. Travis Haire, deputy superintendent at Greater Clark County Schools. "At Parkwood Elementary we're adding four classrooms -- quite a bit to get started."

The cost of summer building is near $9 million, greatly scaled back from the school district's original plan. 

"I feel it was underhanded, deceitful and dishonest," said Alice Butler, a voter and taxpayer.

The public lashed out as the school system tried to break construction into smaller projects -- a way to avoid the ballot as voters had rejected a more than $100 million tax hike. 

When the state blocked the new funding plan, it put work at places like Northhaven Elementary School and Charlestown Middle School and River Valley Middle School all in limbo. 

"I think the community wants what's best for kids," said Principal Adrienne Bach. "We just need to get more info out there: hit the pavement a little harder and we're ready to do it again. So we'll see how it goes."

The big test for the district now is finding a way to still fund proposed projects. As far as what's left at places like Jonathan Jennings Elementary School, the cost is under $2 million, and it's only expected to raise the school property tax rate by a few cents. 

"We'll also have crews working sometimes during the day, when school is in session, and some weekend,s and a  second shift," Haire said.

Kinley knows what she's looking forward to the most. 

"Air conditioning in the gym?" asked WDRB's Gilbert Corsey.

"Wow," Kinley said. "That's going to be good."

For more details on the various construction projects, CLICK HERE.

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