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  • A bird’s-eye look at the construction at Parmalee Elementary School.
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Parmalee Elementary is preparing to say goodbye to its temporary classroom buildings as construction starts on a six-classroom addition.

A groundbreaking ceremony last week commemorated the $3.2 million, 8,000-square-foot addition that is expected to be completed by Aug. 1. The building will also see 4,000 square feet of remodeled space including a new entryway that will entail moving the office and kindergarten classrooms, changes to the gymnasium, a common classroom area, flexible learning spaces and more.

The temporary classroom buildings behind the school for more than 20 years will be removed when the addition is complete. Saunders Construction was awarded the contract to build the addition.

Parmalee in Indian Hills has 217 in-person students and 60 remote learners this year. Funds for the addition are coming from a bond approved by voters in 2018.

At the groundbreaking ceremony on Feb. 1, interim Superintendent Kristopher Schuh told Jeffco Public Schools officials, parents, teachers, students and those watching virtually that he was happy the addition’s design would continue to make the school uniquely Parmalee.

Three fifth graders addressed the group, reminiscing about their fondest school memories. Andy Fleet talked about a nurse comforting him, Nick McKinnon said his family had been at Parmalee for 15 years, and Nora Gulliford noted that educators had taken care of students with different learning styles.

Parmalee principal Ingrid Mielke said the school was known for rigorous learning and has provided cherished memories in its 58-year history.

“I’m so excited the outside of the school will reflect the learning that takes place inside the school,” said Mielke, who became principal as Parmalee got another addition in 1999-2000. “I can’t wait until learning happens within these new walls.”