Thursday the Hamilton County School Board created a priority list of schools that need to be rebuilt. Harrison Elementary School was on top of that list followed by the Chattanooga School for Liberal Arts.
Channel 3 first told you Wednesday about how the 70-year-old building is plagued by decay, mold, and now dozens of mice.
CSLA has been over looked for 18 years. The first time it was on a list to be replaced was in 1999, but 22 new county schools have been built during that time. Now CSLA parents have a reason to be hopeful.
It was standing room only at the Hamilton County School Board meeting. Parents and teachers filled the room to express their concerns about run down Hamilton County School buildings. “They provide a great education, but it would be awesome to have a building for the children to feel safe in and comfortable in,” said CSLA parent Lynn McGill.
CSLA parents made up most of the crowd begging for a change. “The time is now to avoid those awkward conversations with kindergarten students when they find mice eating their school supplies,” said a parent speaker.
The maintenance director read a lengthy list of schools in need of repairs. At least a dozen schools are on the list including Harrison Elementary, East Hamilton, and CSLA. Improvements include new roofs, bleachers, bathrooms, and plumbing .To name just a few. “Very old, bad windows, bad walls, leaky roofs, they've done the best they can to contain it,” said Les Clark.
School board members were handed a blank piece of paper. The Hamilton County Commissioners have been asking board members to list the six schools that need the most work. “It is as frustrating for us as it is for parents. I am a parent. I have 3 children at Hamilton County Schools,” said School Board Member Joe Wingate.
It's now in the hands of Hamilton County Commissioners. Board Members urged concerned parents to share their frustrations with them as well. “They are the ones who decide what buildings. Please understand that. We see your emails. I hear you,” said School Board Member Karitsa Jones.
The six schools will be presented to Hamilton County Commissioners for approval.