Ooltewah Elementary School's art classroom is far too tidy for a kids' studio. The floors are spotless, the chairs are empty and the tables beg for more grime.

When the school district built the $21 million facility, it optimistically included an art classroom and science lab, even though there was no funding to hire an art or science teacher. Now, those two rooms are empty in a stunning new school that's bustling with about 850 students. The school opened in August 2013.

"This is our science lab," said Principal Tom Arnold as he took a group of public officials, and people running for office this year, on a tour of the school Friday. "But you can probably tell it's not being used as a science lab."

Instead, it's being used to store boxes, still unpacked from the move to the new school. The art classroom is used lightly in an after-school art program that students must pay to attend.

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