Once-vacant Cleveland elementary campus gets makeover

Once-vacant Cleveland elementary campus gets makeover

DOWNTOWN CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - This is no trick, students are in for a real treat when they return to school on Monday as more than 40 volunteers gathered at the campus of Citizens Academy on Saturday to give the school a mid-year makeover.

The school is housed in a 1960s building that sat vacant for a decade. Original, bullet-hole-torn window coverings were replaced, the playground was repainted, and a local artist lead volunteers in creating a large mural.

The 15-foot-by-15-foot mural will incorporate the school's seven virtues and the Cleveland skyline. Volunteers will utilize a paint-by-numbers system, designed by local artist Nicolette Capuano, to fill in an outline that the artist creates.

Citizens Academy, a publicly-funded charter school under the Breakthrough Schools umbrella, places a strong emphasis on incubating global ambassadors and promoting community service. It is in alignment with the local office of national financial planning powerhouse, Appreciation Financial, who is funding and spearheading the project.

All equipment, paint and materials will be supplied by Appreciation Financial. Every quarter, Appreciation Financial selects cities where they do business to perform service projects to help instill their corporate motto of giving back.

"We are overjoyed to receive such a generous donation and know that this mural will be a wonderful addition to the school," says Kimberly Peterlin, Principal at Citizens Academy. "I can't wait until our students, teachers and faculty see the finished product. It's sure to have a long-lasting impact on this school."

Citizens Academy was the first in its charter network to open in Ohio in 1999 and was named a Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education in 2011.

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