School adding to elementary building due to growth, safety

Published: Nov. 2, 2022 at 4:55 PM CDT
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MAMMOTH SPRING, Ark. (KAIT) - The Mammoth Spring School District is working on an addition to its elementary building due to substantial growth.

The school broke ground on Monday to kick off the new project.

Mark Taylor is the High School Principal for Mammoth Spring, but just a year ago, he was Elementary Principal.

He said between busting at the seams and safety, the new addition couldn’t come at a better time.

“We’re having an increase in kids that are coming into the district, and so we are having to expand,” Taylor said. “Because of the amount of kids that are allowed in the kindergarten classroom by the state, we are always a classroom short occasionally, so we are planning for future expansion.”

Currently, the school has certain programs in different buildings than the elementary, but with the expansion, some programs could be in the same building as the kids.

“Our ideal goal is to have the elementary students totally enclosed in the building for safety reasons so that the only time they are going outside is for recess or the cafeteria for lunch,” Taylor said.

On top of the pandemic, price increases put the project on hold for a short while.

“In 2019, we were looking at something that was going to be under about $900,000, and now the last bid we had was over $1.5 million, so we had to restructure and redo, and I think right now we’ve got it to where it’s going to be just over one million to $1.1 million,” Taylor said.

For the money, Taylor said that was a mixture of domestic funds and grants.

“We’ve had plenty that we’ve been building up, and we also got some matching funds from the state to help with the construction through various grants,” Taylor said.

Taylor hopes for construction to be finished by the start of school in 2023.