CAMERON - As he waited for the arrival of students to the new Cameron High School, Wayne Simms, Marshall County Schools assistant superintendent, stood in the cafeteria and took in the view.
A few minutes later, as students arrived by the busload to the new building after many anxious months, a bright sunrise peaked over the hills across from the building. Though classes won't formally begin until Monday in the new, $31.8 million building, students spent this morning getting acquainted with their new school, something Cameron High School Principal Jack Cain said has been "a long time coming."
"It was worth the wait, wasn't it?" he asked a cafeteria full of smiling students.
Photo by Scott McCloskey
Cameron students got their first look at the new school as it opened for the first time today. Students check out the gymnasium.
Students spent today finding their lockers and seeing many of the areas in the school for the first time, including the new gymnasium and lunch area.
With occupancy approval granted less than a week ago, Simms said crews have been working to make sure the building is ready for classes to begin, though some new challenges presented themselves, namely the amount of dust still on the floors.
"With this new terrazzo floor, we've mopped it several times and we can't get the dust off of it," he said while leading a tour of the building. "We are working to find a better way to clean it."
Elsewhere, workers on scissor lifts cleaned windows and painted steel beams, putting the finishing touches on the building. Simms said he hopes to have crews at the school throughout the weekend completing the remaining cleaning. Additionally, Simms said the final painting on the main gymnasium court was expected to begin today.
Despite the ongoing work, students didn't seem to notice as they walked through the nearly 1.5-mile building. Many said they were excited to finally be in the building after more than a year of delays. Cain and Simms pointed out some of the features of the new building, including the walking track over the main gymnasium and the painted murals in the auxiliary gymnasium, where students took the opportunity to test out the rims on the new basketball backboards.
Simms said students will attend class as at the old Cameron High School on Friday and are scheduled to begin classes first thing Monday morning.