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TES gets new Pre-K playground

With dozens of new students on the way, plenty is changing at Tharptown Elementary School – mobile unit classrooms and a cafeteria annex have been added, additional teachers have been hired, and a new cafeteria to serve both schools will soon be under beginning construction. But one change unrelated to the influx of students – although no less timely – is a new Pre-K playground.

“We have to have a certain type of playground to be in compliance with the OSR Pre-K program,” Principal Ann Scott explained. A grant helped make the new $30,000 playground possible.

The swing set and slide/climbing equipment will be encircled by a fence for safety and include a shade structure for protection from the sun. A designated walkway will ensure safe passage from the school building to the playground, and the equipment can be enjoyed by TES’ four kindergarten, three first and three second grade classes, in addition to 18 Pre-K children.

“The kids are going to be so excited. I’m tickled for them,” Scott said.

Scott said there is an atmosphere of enthusiasm at Tharptown as the school prepares to welcome returning students as well as brand new students who previous were enrolled in Russellville City Schools but are now transferring because of the new tuition requirements for out-of-district students.

“I’m tickled to death to get the kids. I’m just thrilled,” Scott said. “I hope they will feel comfortable. I want the transition to be positive for them. I have talked with Mrs. Ezzell and Mrs. Hollimon at Russellville, and we’re going to work with them to make the transition easy for the kids.”