When we all work together: WBHS library gets sprucing up thanks to many
By Melanie Tucker (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Recycled furniture, unused items from a Volkswagen plant, the talents of artistic students, the creativity of one librarian and the teamwork of a whole school — these are the elements that have come together to provide William Blount High School with an updated and more visually appealing library.
Cindy Price has been librarian at this county high school since 1996 and said little has been done since she got here in the way of sprucing up, due to lack of funds.
The circulation desk, she pointed out, is the same one installed in 1979 when the school opened. The couch used by students was actually a sleeper sofa Price donated to the cause.
With no budget to speak of, it’s been hard to make many changes over the years, she explained.
Library fund dwindled
William Blount High School’s library fund has definitely dwindled over the past four fiscal budgets. Price received $1,000 for library supplies in 2009-2010 but didn’t receive any last year or this year.
But last year, when William Blount was going through its accreditation process, money was made available for beautification of the school, Price said. She said she teamed up with teacher Melanie Pritchard to get some artwork on the walls.
Pritchard’s graphic arts students designed a mural for one wall and also helped paint some literary quotes on an opposite wall. Some of Price’s library helpers also assisted. Students and faculty were invited to submit favorite quotes which were then selected from by Price.
The wall isn’t quite finished yet, but Price and library visitors are quite pleased with its progress.
The work was started last October, “We had been talking about it for five years,” Price said. “We finally got some money to do it.”
Former students, parents and teachers as well as current ones are invited to come see what the project is all about. Price will be holding an open house from 2:30 to 5:30 p.m. Wednesday and wants to show off the work of all who have participated. It could be the inspiration for others to begin their own special projects, or the desire to help continue this one.
Help from everywhere
One of the things Price is most proud of is the new circulation desk. She said the William Blount High School Interact Club, which is sponsored by the Maryville Rotary Club, helped raise funds to purchase it.
Tony Gibbons, president of Blount County Habitat for Humanity, also lent his expertise. The components for this piece of equipment were actually left over from the Volkswagen Plant built in Chattanooga. Add that to the refurbished computers that were obtained through the Race to the Top campaign, and the library definitely has noticeable changes.
“All of a sudden all of these things started coming together,” Price said.
The next phase, she said, will be to replace the desk chairs that have also been here since the school opened over three decades ago. “They have been repaired so many times they can’t be any longer,” she said.
Scaffolding for the artwork was obtained from the vocational school and a local business.
Some teachers were kind enough to donate two couches to make the library more inviting.
Price is able to do things with money she gets from fines collections, but she hopes to start a fundraising campaign soon that will help carry this project through.
“I just like for things to look pretty,” Price said. “It’s been good to see everyone come together like this.”