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Community Excited For Future Of New Eastern Elementary School

Students, parents, and faculty all had the chance to say goodbye to the old Eastern Elementary building on Thursday.

Construction will start this July to completely redo the elementary school and they plan for the new building to be ready by August of 2018.

The new building will be two stories and will be able to house more than 200 students than they can right now.

Traverse City Area Public Schools say they are excited to bring a state of the art facility to Traverse City.

“We call it keep our eyes on the future of where we’re going,” said Biz Ruskowski, principal for Eastern Elementary School.

A school that has been around since the 50’s is being completely redone.

“We are just growing out of the current facility. We will be coming one with the Old Mission community, one elementary school in the fall of 2018 and this rebuild will help us to house all of the students up to about 550 students, pre-k through five,” said Ruskowski.

The students at Eastern Elementary moved over to Bertha Vos after their spring break to finish out this year and all of next year.

“It’s been a bit of an inconvenience to have to move out of your school in the middle of the school year but our community has been outstanding,” said Ruskowski.

“It’s been a real seamless transition, the kids have adjusted well, they’ve maintained education as usual and the kids seem to have been re energized to finish the school year on a positive note,” said Jennifer Walter, a parent of students at the school.

Faculty members have been doing everything they can to make this easy for all students involved.

“We’ve done a lot to incorporate them into the ideas and concepts of the new building,” said Christine Thomas-Hill, Executive Director of Finance and Operations. “We’ve done a lot of fun things at this building, we’ve let them sign the wall and we’ve had some good little things for them to say goodbye to the building and the history.”

Even the students came out to the ceremony and they all say they are excited for the new school.

“It will be cool to come here and help out the school,” said fourth grader Mason Cox.

“I’m just excited for the younger kids,” said fourth grader Drew Zrimec.

“Hopefully some cool younger kids will be there,” said Cox.

“It’s just a privilege to be part of such an exciting time here at TCAPS and with Eastern Elementary School,” said Walter.

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