It smells like fresh paint and new material in the halls of Earl Jenkins Elementary School, on the east side of Las Vegas.
The new school is one of two that will open their doors for the first time on Monday, welcoming a projected 705 students this school year. The constantly growing Clark County School District has raced to build new schools to alleviate overcrowded classrooms.
Families lined the hallways and auditorium Friday to celebrate their brand-new school, which will provide relief to nearby Iverson and Hal Smith elementaries.
“I think they’re going to get a lot of foundation here,” Earl Jenkins, the retired district educator for whom the school is named, told the crowd of parents. “Just think about it. Most of them are going to come here and they’re going to learn how to read right here in this school.”
The new Sandra Abston Elementary also will open Monday for a projected 723 students, alleviating crowding at Goolsby, Hayes and Rogers elementary schools.
A number of other building changes are occurring this school year:
■ Three elementary schools — Griffith, Twin Lakes and Ullom — are celebrating their brand-new buildings. The district built replacements for those schools, which had old buildings.
■ Five schools — Elizondo Elementary, Goldfarb Elementary, Katz Elementary, Mendoza Elementary and Bonner Middle School — will enjoy new building additions to alleviate overcrowding. These schools previously had a large number of portable buildings on their campuses. The four elementary schools will operate with 18 more rooms, and Bonner will have an additional 22 rooms.
■ Three elementary schools — Edwards, Mackey and Wasden — will operate from a “swing” campus while construction on a new building is underway. Edwards students will be set up on a portable campus at Heard Elementary, while Mackey will operate from portables at Wendell Williams Elementary and Wasden students will attend classes at the former Fyfe Elementary campus.