On Saturdays, I usually sleep in and then watch hours and hours of Dexter (or House of Cards or whatever I’m binge-watching that week) on Netflix. But last weekend, my husband and I woke up early and headed about 55 miles southeast to Okolona Elementary School to spend the next several hours repainting the K-4 building.
The painting project was part of an Ole Miss School of Education project organized by Center for Excellence in Literary Instruction Director Angela Rutherford. On a recent visit to the school, which came out of state-run conservatorship in 2013, Rutherford and others had noticed that the flaking, white hallways were in desperate need of a facelift.
On Saturday, a group of about 50 volunteers, ranging from parents and a local school board member to the McLean Institute for Public Service and AmeriCorps VISTA program, repainted the hallway, doors and teacher’s lounge. Students from Rebel Global Connections even painted some pretty impressive murals in the hallway.
It’s always a powerful experience to see what can be accomplished in a few hours of free time, and I can only hope that the Okolona students enjoy the small makeover we could offer. The superintendent told my husband a few days later that “the students were excited to see a nice, bright place” on Monday morning.