A nice, new cozy den for the Cubs

Published 12:05 pm Wednesday, December 21, 2016

By Van Wade

The Orange Leader


LITTLE CYPRESS — Immaculate.

That would be a excellent way to describe it as some junior high cubs finally have a nice “den” to call home.

For many residents of the Little Cypress area, just passing by the brand new Little Cypress Junior High brings smiles to their faces.

So many locals either went to high school there going way back, or attended elementary school and junior high at once was the old campus.

Pride always remained high but everyone knew it was time for a facelift and the bond issue that was passed by the residents for the Little Cypress-Mauriceville district was definitely a blessing.

The “new”elementary school and intermediate school in Little Cypress have been around for some time but the junior high campus remained proud but “old.”

Well, the entire LC-M community certainly has a reason to stand up and be proud of the New Little Cypress Junior High.

Those who went through the Little Cypress system over all the years would barely recognize it.

All of the kids have elbow room now. The entire school is in one central location. No more sloshing across wet sidewalks our across the parking lot to get to classes. The students and parents can certainly feel safe as well with a state-of-the-art security system.

All of the classrooms are brand new as well as the front offices, cafeteria and band hall. The long-time Bates Gym has been renovated and will be hardly recognizable for the “old” athletes that have ventured through those doors.

“To see the smiles on the kids’ faces on their first day back was priceless,” said Principal Ryan DuBose. “They have a lot of pride in their school now. The teachers are so thrilled about the environment as well now too. It’s a great place to come to work.”

Assistant Principal Leah LeBouef, a 1988 LC-M graduate who has been a coach, teacher and administrator for 24 years in the district couldn’t be happier.

“There is so much history here and so many of my friends and family have went through the school, but it was definitely time,” said LeBouef. “Memories will always be there but the atmosphere now is unbelievable. Everything now is kid-friendly and work-friendly.”

The new school has also fired up the faculty as well.

“I’ve been working with some teachers for a long time now and they really enjoy being educators,” said LeBouef. “It was hard for some of them to come in the last several years because the ‘old” buildings had so many issues. Now, it’s amazing to see them roll in with big grins on their faces and ready to get the days rolling. Some are close to on the verge of thinking about retiring but they are like ‘Wait a minute, I love this place and would like to stay another year are two.”

The new hallways are long and wide as students will no longer be bumping against one another getting back to forth to class. All of the different class wings are in one central building so there is no more braving the elements of the outside.

“It was built perfectly for the kids,” said DuBose. “They don’t have to worry about wearing rain slickers or rain boots to get to their class destinations anymore. No more slipping and sliding everywhere they go. Safety is always a big issue and now everyone is together and not scattered all over. Security is also a big deal at schools across the country. Believe me, we have cameras everywhere in this facility so parents and kids feel completely safe and the kids can solely concentrate on receiving the best education possible.”

The cafeteria is so much more spacious and has a new state-of-the-art kitchen with plenty of room and it also has a stage.

The library also has plenty of leg room, located in the middle of the building.

Each classroom is unique in itself. Cabinets have been built across each one of them for students to safely store their supplies. Each class also has excellent storage areas for the teachers.

The band hall is unique and no longer cramped as musicians can hone their talents. The science labs and shop class have rounded into shape for future scientists and architects.

Bates Gym remains in its always sturdy frame but several nice renovations were added, including new bleachers, a beautiful wooden parquet floor similar to the one at the high school along with new lighting that really brightens the atmosphere.

After all is said and done, the new LCJH will possible make other schools feel “green” with envy.

“It’s amazing to come here and just see a completely new attitude,” said DuBose. “The design is simply incredible. The community has something to definitely be thrilled about. It’s something we want to maintain and be proud of for many years to come.”

LeBouef echoed the same sentiments.

“As a graduate of LC-M and being involved with the district for so many years, I can say, proud, proud, proud,” said LeBouef. “It’s always been a special place and now it’s just that much more special.”