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Franklin Elementary School in Kent stayed busy for the past week, despite students being home for winter break. Today, staff members and volunteers are finishing the application of a new paint job to the school's gymnasium, just in time for students to enjoy at the start of a new semester.
"When they get back on Monday, we're going to bring the students to the gym so they can see it before school begins," Franklin Principal Todd Poole said, adding that the gym is the used frequently between sports, events, assemblies and meals.
When students arrive, they'll see that the solid, egg-white color of the gym is changed to two tones: three grey walls and a large red wall that will feature the Franklin Rough Riders logo.
Franklin Elementary, at 6662 S.R. 43, was selected to receive the donated paint by Glidden Paint as part of a nationwide "Colorful Classrooms" contest.
As one of five finalist schools, Franklin's staff, students and parents campaigned throughout a month-long voting period to determine which school would receive 200 gallons of free paint. The school ended up placing third in the competition, but Glidden decided to award each school with the grand prize.
The school building, built in the 1920s, hasn't undergone any major renovations since its doors were opened.
"My son's father went to school here, and he said it hasn't changed since he went here, and that's 30-plus years ago," said Missy Hilton, a parent and Home Depot employee who organized "Team Depot" paint crews to help with the job. "It looks so much nicer now, I can't wait to see the kids' faces."
Hilton said although most of the Home Depot help came from the Streetsboro store she works at, employees of the Macedonia, Bainbridge and Maple Heights locations have lent aid as well.
"I'm not sure where all these people are coming from, I'm just glad that they're here," Poole said.
Maurice Kirkland, a store manager at the Streetsboro Home Depot, said the company aims to give back through monthly projects.
"It's about doing the right thing. We enjoy it," he said.
Contact this reporter at 330-298-1127