Douglass

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COLUMBIA - Columbia Public Schools (CPS) hosted a dedication and open house Tuesday evening of its newly renovated facility at Douglass High School. 

Construction caused the school to close its doors for the 2016-2017 school year, but it reopened four weeks ago with the start of the CPS 2017-2018 school year. 

Principal Eryca Neville said her staff at Douglass went above and beyond to make sure the school opened in time. 

"We were still in boxes at the end of July. It was amazing that we made it, it would have been impossible with a staff that didn't care so much about these students," Neville said. 

Voters approved the $6 million renovations three years ago as a part of the bond issue ballot. 

Chris Davis of PW Architects handled the design of the restructure. He said every aspect of the campus has been improved. 

"This was an old building, and we brought it into the 21st century. That means not only bringing it up to construction standards we have in 2017, but also equipping it with everything students need to succeed in 2017," Davis said. 

The renovated building features new computer labs, culinary arts rooms, art studios, and an improved gymnasium. 

Many Douglass High School alumni came to the dedication to see the makeover of the halls they had walked. 

Alumnus Gina Rodney said she is amazed at the way her school looks now. 

"I would have loved to go to school here with it looking like this. I always wanted to take a cooking class, and these kids can take them with that new room they have," Rodney said. 

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