Despite placing third in Glidden Paint's Colorful Classrooms Contest, Franklin Elementary School in Kent will be receiving 200 gallons of paint for free, along all the contest's finalists.
"Everyone's excited about it," Franklin Elementary Principal Todd Poole said. "The parents are, the community is and teachers definitely are."
Franklin Elementary School, at 6662 S.R. 43, is the oldest building used by the Kent School District. Of the more than 320 entries from across the country, Franklin Elementary was selected as one of the contest's five finalists.
Jefferson Elementary in Gallup, N.M. won the competition with 27,440 votes, 44.48 percent of the all votes cast, but Poole said it was "awesome" witnessing the community come together with school pride to help Franklin Elementary earn nearly 20 percent of all votes and place third.
Poole said families used Twitter, Facebook, email, called friends and campaigned outside of Walmart, while staff members emailed their friends in other districts and students stood outside of the Kent State University Student Center to gain votes.
"Even as we got closer to the end and were down 8,000 votes, it was never a gloomy outlook," Poole said. "They were determined. That was really cool."
Poole said posts on Glidden's Facebook page took a negative turn as people associated with the finalists challenged vote totals, but he was proud that the Kent community stayed out of that particular discussion.
"Maybe they were, I don't know, but our community was not getting sucked into that," he said.
Franklin is now working through selecting new color schemes for classrooms and its gymnasium, which will have to be approved by the Kent Board of Education.
Poole said the school gym is a primary focus its the home for many school functions and events, and the school has its eyes on painting a large Rough Rider logo on one of the walls.
A few service organizations and individuals have volunteered their time to help paint once the time comes, Poole said, adding that any individuals or organizations willing to help can contact the school.
Contact this reporter at 330-298-1127