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Construction Prevents Green Country School From Starting On Time

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School in Olive was supposed to start on Thursday but right now parts of the school are under a major remodeling project. School in Olive was supposed to start on Thursday but right now parts of the school are under a major remodeling project.
Although the nearly century's old frame is the same, inside it's a like a brand, new building. Although the nearly century's old frame is the same, inside it's a like a brand, new building.
Third grade teacher, Stephanie Stevens, said it's important for the school to look nice. Third grade teacher, Stephanie Stevens, said it's important for the school to look nice.
OLIVE, Oklahoma -

A Green Country school district is forced to push back its start date by about two weeks, saying starting school now would be unsafe for the students.

School in Olive was supposed to start on Thursday but right now parts of the school are under a major remodeling project and it just was not going to be ready on time.

Things are starting to come together in Stephanie Stevens' third grade classroom.

“I was panicking before yesterday,” she said.

Monday was the first time Stevens could get into her room to start setting up for the school year.

Although the nearly century's old frame is the same, inside it's a like a brand, new building.

“Now, it's just so clean and bright and everything's new,” Stevens said.

Over the summer Olive's cafeteria was gutted and renovations to classrooms began - replacing ceiling tiles, painting walls and adding new bathrooms.

“No, I can't imagine us starting right now in all this chaos,” said Stevens.

With doors still off their hinges and a kitchen in disarray, Superintendent Jerry Reynolds said it's not quite safe enough for students yet.

“When you look around, you don't want kids coming into a building project while it's going on,” Reynolds said. “We want to make sure it's a good environment for them to be in and a positive environment for them to learn in.”

Stevens said the colors of the walls made learning more challenging.

“It was a, poop brown is what we called it,” Stevens laughed. “It was horrible.”

Flushing that old paint job, she said, will help make students more active and involved.

“And, of course, when the kids are young, with bright colors, that enhances the learning ability and it does the same thing in a classroom,” Stevens said.

All of the upgrades were made possible thanks to the town. Voters approved an $850,000 bond earlier in the year.

“So, it's very important for the school to look nice and have good, quality teachers because this is Olive, right here, and it's great a'place,” Stevens said.

There's still more work to do, a new roof for the gym, new computers, and new smart boards, but none of that will keep class from starting in two weeks.

The superintendent said all the work should be complete by August 25th, the new first day of school in Olive. Then students and teachers will have to go an extra five days at the end of the school year to make up the time.

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