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COUNTING DOWN: Work Continues At 6 Schools

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When the bell rings next week, officials with Des Moines Public Schools are confident that building will be ready.

Hallways at Jefferson Elementary and Hoyt Middle School are filled with power tools and many walls are still getting fresh coats of paint.

The construction is part of a busy summer for Des Moines schools.

The district is spending $40 million dollars between the brand new Edmunds Elementary and renovations at five other school buildings.

"These are buildings that haven't seen renovations in a number of years,” said Bill Good, Corporate Operations Officer for Des Moines Public Schools.

The improvements include secure entryways, energy efficient heating and cooling systems, and at Hoyt Middle School, brand new classrooms.

"It makes it a more pleasant place to live in for six hours a day,” said Deb Markert, Principal at Hoyt Middle School.

Markert says renovations are on schedule but there was a lot to accomplish in a short window of time.

"As they are painting and making finishing touches, we have cleaning crews setting up furniture and classrooms,” Markert told Channel 13 News.

To be ready by Thursday, Hoyt is using custodial staff from buildings that are ready to go and construction crews will work around the clock, including all weekend long.

According to Markert, there may be some small projects that will be completed in the fall, but classes will start as scheduled.

"I'm sure the kids will be thrilled and we're excited that even though it's not done to watch things come together. It's going to be great,” said Markert.

After this summer, the renovations are far from over in the Des Moines School District.

Next summer, Merrill Middle School will go through a $1.7 million dollar renovation.

The new Casady Education Center is set to open in the fall of 2014. That's a $9 million dollar project.