ELEMENTARY SCHOOL LIBRARY
IN HARLAN COUNTY GETS MAKE OVER
The Green Hills Elementary School Library in Harlan County is getting a significant facelift, thanks in part to members of the Kentucky Education Association-Student Program chapter at Eastern Kentucky University’s Corbin campus.
The driving force behind the renovations has been Valerie Osborne, an EKU senior who has served Green Hills as a volunteer and substitute teacher for the past eight years and is now completing her student teaching at the school, which counts approximately 175 students through eighth grade in the small, rural community of Bledsoe.
Osborne and KEA-SP President Denise Lewis applied for a grant through Outreach to Teach, a KEA program that selects one or two public schools annually that are in need of make-overs. Photos of a blue tarp suspended from the Green Hills library ceiling prompted a donation of a record $6,000 toward the project.
A hole had been cut at the tarp’s lowest point, funneling any water that reached it into a large trashcan. The Green Hills students teasingly called their library “Blanton Falls,” in honor of librarian Brenda Blanton.
The first phase of the renovations was completed in early April. Several Corbin KEA-SP student members painted the library’s walls and numerous bookshelves alongside Green Hills personnel and other volunteers. Also, the Harlan County School District recently installed a new roof above the library ceiling.
On Saturday, May 1, student members from KEA-SP programs around the area and volunteers will join forces with Corbin KEA-SP to complete the second phase. This one-day blitz will result in a total redesign of the library. A special reading area will be created, and hundreds of books will be re-shelved. Also, a special mural depicting a waterfall will be painted on one of the library’s walls.
The student KEA group is lead by faculty members Peggy Petrilli, Peggy McGuire and Connie Hodge.
Source: EKU press release