Blossburg Elementary School gets ‘paint lift’ from volunteers

BLOSSBURG – The halls of the elementary school here hadn’t been painted in 17 years, and they looked it, according to teacher Jeanne Carlson.

Eighteen teachers, both current and retired, plus school staff and several students and parents, decided to do something about the peeling, dirty walls – even though the future of the school is uncertain at best.

Each person in the group belongs to BEST – the Blossburg Elementary School Team.

Despite the fact that the school could close after this year, and parts of it even eventually demolished, the group decided to give the halls a fresh coat of paint, retired teacher Kate Chabala said.

“The kids deserved it,” Chabala said.

They all pitched in and bought the paint, brushes and rollers from Lowe’s, then painted on July 23, 24 and 29. In that time, they finished four hallways and two restrooms, basically “the entire elementary school, K-6.”

Not only that, but tile is coming this month for the main hall, which had been torn up three years ago when the plan was to have a building project.

“Last year we just made do with what we had and used tape to put the primary numbers on the floor so at least they could see those as they were walking in,” Chabala said.

The group had been telling the school board “for years” that the halls desperately needed repainting, so when the board voted to keep the school open for one more year, they all said, “let’s do it.”

Participating in the paint job were:

  • Retired teachers Kate Chabala, Laurie Tompkins, Linda Farrer, Carol Wooley and Larry Smith;
  • Teachers Jeanne Carlson, Natalie Hetzel, Kelly Honeyfield, Joline House, Missy Loomis, Tom Augustine, Anne Harman, Lisa Stryker, Amy Nybeck and 4-year-old Wyatt Nybeck;
  • Secretaries Rebecca Hemling and Shelly McIntosh;
  • Students Peyton and Gavin Loomis, Bridgette Wolf, Ben Wolf, Dan Harman and Michael Harman;
  • High school students Derrick Nybeck, Carrigan Honeyfield and Thomas Keown;
  • Principal Al Lindner;
  • Parents Amy Augustine, Dawn Hull-Wolf and Josh Wolf, Ethan Chabala;
  • Custodians Bill Novitske, Bob Frederick and Winnie Seaman.

The first day of school this year is Sept. 3, the Tuesday after Labor Day.