CHARLESTOWN, Ind. — Summer break is usually well-deserved downtime for teachers, but that's not the case for a Greater Clark County Schools crew. Several staff members have spent much of their vacation inside Pleasant Ridge Elementary in Charlestown. They made a commitment to spruce up the school in quite the creative way. When students come back, they'll see mural masterpieces all over the place.
"They're going to be really shocked, but in a good way,” first-grade teacher Nashiea Edmiston said.
The painted murals all have different themes. The one in the cafeteria pays tribute to the district's mascot, the pirate.
"That is the pirate that we use across all of the schools in Charlestown. It's very iconic. It really is what brings everybody together here in the town,” Edmiston said. "It's just really exciting to finally have that reflected in the school."
The bathrooms have lots of inspiring quotes about confidence and leadership. Each stall has a different look.
Teachers paint color, inspiration inside Charlestown's Pleasant Ridge Elementary
"That's kind of like little blank canvases. The kids go to the bathroom a lot so to be able to go to the bathroom and see all of these inspiring little messages that are just primary friendly for them, that's what we were most excited about. They're going to run to the restroom and just see this and be reminded that they can do this if they work hard and dream big, anything is possible, just things like that,” Edmiston said.
It took a few weeks to finish the work, and the team said it was well worth all of the long hours.
"It's important for them to have something that really is something they can be proud of,” Edmiston said. "It makes for just a very impactful and positive school year overall for not just the kids, but the staff as well."
The staff plans to paint even more murals before school starts and continue the trend during holiday breaks. They hope their work inspires other schools to do the same and encourage kids all over the area.