Construction students expand their own classroom -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Construction students expand their own classroom

By Jade Bulecza - bio | email

VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) –Construction students at Valdosta High School are expanding their classroom themselves.

The instructor says the old classroom was small and cramped and needed an upgrade.

Students are gaining hands on experience and saving the school money.

Students put their carpentry skills to work at Valdosta High School.

Rather than hiring contractors for a much needed classroom expansion, instructor Jim Dawkins, had his construction students get the job done.

"Students would rather build a project than saw a board and they can see the finished project," said Dawkins.

It's a learning experience for students and it saves the school money by doing it themselves.

They demolished the old classroom, built a frame, put on the siding, and soon they'll paint.

From this line to this back wall was their classroom. This is just seven students but imagine having 30 in this small area.

They've doubled the size of what was once a 300 square foot classroom. Now, because it's 600 square feet, they have computers and a lot more space.

"You can get up without tripping over someone's feet," said Valdosta High student Travis Gibbs.

 "Last year we built the girls softball dugout," said Dawkins. "We poured the slab and built it from start to finish. Last year we also built storage sheds."

Learning carpentry and masonry skills also gets these students ready for a career.

"I'm learning about construction and that's what I want to do," said Valdosta High student Terrance Brown.

Mr. Dawkins and his classes are glad to put their mark on a classroom that will be used for years to come and also glad to have more space.

It costs $1,500 to expand their classroom as opposed to spending $4,500 for hired help.

They've worked on it three weeks and the classroom's expected to be completed in a month.

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