Somerville Road Elementary School staff sad to say goodbye to 74-year-old building

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DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) – The faculty at Somerville Road Elementary School is packing up things to be ready to move out on the last day of school, May 22.

They will be moving to Brookhaven Middle school for two years and then they will relocate to Oak Park Middle School permanently.

“It is bittersweet because this building has so many memories,” said Teddi Jackson, the principal of the school. “But it’s not about the bricks and the mortar, it’s about the people, the children, and the parents of our community.”

She and several other faculty members are sad to see the building, built in 1941, torn down in mid-June. Jackson said she plans to take a ceiling tile with her for posterity.

“We’re going to miss the building but we know that Decatur has to move forward and so we’re going to have to make the sacrifice so that we can have a nice high school. The students in my building now will be able to benefit from that,” she said.

The building will be demolished to make room for a new high school.

There are 434 students in pre k-3 through 5th grade at Somerville Road Elementary School.

Longtime teacher Judith Looney is very emotional about it.

“It’s going to be very difficult,” she said. “It’s like a city actually within itself. We’ve had life and death and trauma and we all stick together.”

She plans to take home a brick from the building, which were made in Decatur.

“It’s just very hard to move,” she said.

But she is comforted by the fact they are making the move together, as a family.