Tom Bean Elementary under construction, school still expected to start on-time

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TOM BEAN, TX -- Construction is still underway at Tom Bean's Elementary School where workers are adding new facilities, upgrading security and accommodating new technology, but with the start of class just a week away there is some concern about whether the school will be ready for students.

From Highway 11 in Tom Bean it may not appear that the elementary school is ready to open its doors, but school officials assure that classrooms will be ready on August 25th.

"They say that we're going to be on time. I don't really believe that that's going to happen because I mean it looks gutted," 4th grade parent Amanda Morrison said.

Superintendent Troy Roberts says the saying "don't judge a book by it's cover" is very true for Tom Bean ISD. It may not look like it from the outside, but they have made significant progress at the elementary school.

"This is one of the classrooms that's been renovated. It's in one of the older buildings that was retrofitted and then rebuilt with new, and so it's been outfitted with the latest and the greatest new lighting, new electrical, brand new technology and so it's more than ready and exciting for,you know, the students to be coming in," Roberts said.

"We have the 3rd and 4th grade wing, and the 5th grade wing essentially complete. We just have some final touches to do," Project Manager Peter Gedoury said.

Roberts says the newly renovated school also has new security features.

"We're all under one roof now and so we've designed features into it for security measures in place, along with you know security cameras and things of that nature," Roberts said.

A $10-million dollar school bond, passed last year, is funding the renovations and parent Amanda Morrison says those renovations were desperately needed.

"We've needed a bigger cafeteria, bigger gymnasium with AC," Morrison said.

Though Roberts says bigger classrooms will be ready for the start of the new year the new gymnasium and cafeteria, and several other classrooms should be finished by December. For now students will use the old gym and cafeteria.

We are told the entire project is expected to be complete by March of next year.