DELISLE, MS (WLOX) - With school starting this Thursday, teachers at Delisle Elementary School are preparing to motivate their students to succeed. During orientation on Monday, they learned about a new program this year that rewards students and teachers for attendance, effort, and achievement.
"Oh, it's going to be great!" said Lead Teacher Mandy Lacy. "We are so excited. It's going to be awesome!"
What is also new this year is a change in the campus setting. The teachers are moving out of their school on Kiln-Delisle Road and into 54 portable classrooms. That's because the district is getting ready to build a new Delisle Elementary School.
"Some of the structures here were compromised during Katrina," said Pass Christian School Superintendent Dr. Sue Matheson. "We did have water in a number of the classrooms and it was just time for us to go in, tear down, and just start the rebuilding process."
The old Delisle school was built more than 50 years ago, and several buildings were added on over the years. Every building will be demolished, except the gym. The cafeteria building will also stay and will be converted into a media/multi-purpose center.
The new campus will be safer and will feature an enclosed courtyard, extra classrooms to accommodate growth, and it will be built to withstand hurricane-force winds.
"It's growing pains. Here we go again," said Matheson. "We're all ready to get out of the building business. But really and truly, it will just be fantastic for the community out here, for our teachers, and certainly for the children."
Pass Christian School District leaders hope to start building the new school in September. The construction should take about a year. FEMA and insurance money will help pay for the project.
Just so you know, the trailers have been on the Delisle campus since Katrina devastated the school district, and had housed Pass High, Pass Middle School and some elementary school children.