Graysville Elementary School

ESPLOST V funds are paying for major changes at Graysville Elementary School, including a new wing and safety features. (Photo courtesy of Catoosa County Public Schools)

The Catoosa County Board of Education got an update at its Jan. 9 meeting on three ESPLOST V projects going on at local schools.

ESPLOST stands for Education Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax. It is a one-percent tax on consumer goods in Catoosa County. The continuance of the tax is voted on during selected elections.

Mike Sholl, director of operations for Catoosa County Public Schools, provided information and showed board members pictures of the progress being made at two elementary schools and one high school.

The big project – a facility equitability and safety project at Graysville Elementary School – is aimed at improving instruction space and safety for students.

"The old part of the school," says Catoosa Schools Communications Specialist Marissa Brower, "is 67 years old and has pod classrooms that don’t facilitate instruction very well. That part of the school is being removed and a new wing is being added."

Graysville will also enjoy a new entrance designed with security in mind.

"The Board of Education is committed to facility equitability," says Superintendent Denia Reese, "because they understand that parents want the school their child is zoned to attend to be equitable with all the other schools in the county. The new design for Graysville will improve safety and academic achievement while providing facility equitability."

The other ESPLOST V projects board members were updated on were the remodeling of the media center at Battlefield Elementary School and the new sign Battlefield Parkway commuters have seen in front of Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe High School.

ESPLOST V funds have also been earmarked to cover projects that include updating security, updating playground equipment, purchasing new school buses, purchasing iPads and Chromebooks for students, and maintaining facilities.