GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Gulfport High teachers and staff are busy moving into two new buildings, and a freshly-renovated media center. Final preparations are underway to get the campus ready for the first day of school.
Parents and students who showed up for band uniform fittings on Wednesday got their first glimpse of the new fine arts building at Gulfport High School.
"It's huge, I love it. It's a big step up from our old band hall, we were all kind of crammed up in there," said sophomore Brooke Bryant.
The 40,000 square foot facility, the athletic field house, and remodeled media center will be the first structures to open as part of the new construction and renovation project. The fine arts building will house the band program, drama department, choir, strings, and art classes.
"I'm excited. I've been anticipating it for awhile, watching them pour the foundation and just thinking about the day we get to move in," said art teacher Marshall Polson.
The move was extra special for Daniel Vernon, who will be starting his first year as the school's choir director.
"It's a beautiful space. The room is very nice, and it's great as a first year teacher to be able to have a new room like this. So it's a new start for the building, for the students, and myself," said Vernon.
With classes starting Aug. 4, crews are putting finishing touches on the new buildings, and preparing to pour concrete in the courtyard.
"They assured me that would be finished, so I feel good about that. I think they [students] will come back and start to see the layout of the new campus, so I think it'll be an exciting time for everybody coming back," said GHS Principal Mike Lindsey.
In January, the Junior and Senior Academic Institute Buildings and the new high school entrance will open. The 9th and 10th grade academic building is scheduled to open in August of 2017.