Allied Health

Shelby Hardymon, 17, Darrian Little, 17, and Samantha Bennett, 17, take vitals on a practice dummy Friday in the Allied Health Classroom in Fleming County High School.

FLEMINGSBURG -- Fleming County High School renovations are ahead of schedule and could be completed by the end of the school year.

FCHS Principal Stephanie Emmons said construction was originally scheduled to be completed in the summer, but that could happen as early as May.

"We're really excited," she said. "We're hoping they can actually finish by then. If they do, we'll be ahead of schedule."

Construction on the school has included several new upgrades to the building -- a new nursing area, allied health classrooms, welding center, culinary arts classroom and other areas.

Emmons said the new nursing area, which is on the third floor, has teachers and students excited.

"There's a doctor's office in the back area and the students are given scenarios while the teacher assesses them," she said. "They can test for their CNAs when they leave the program. The students love it. There is more space and we're able to offer more to them in the program."

Just down the hallway from the nursing classroom is an allied health classroom, where students can learn about other medical fields, such as physical therapy.

"This is for students who want to go into the medical field, but may not want to pursue nursing," Emmons said. "Before this classroom, they had a very small area to work in. It was cramped and uncomfortable. The students just love it."

On Friday, three students, Darrian Little, 17, Shelby Hardymon, 17, and Samantha Bennett, 17, were in the classroom taking the vitals of a dummy in a hospital bed.

The students said the new classroom is much better suited to their needs.

"I love it. I think it's better than being cramped up," Hardymon said. "There's more space so we can better prepare for what we want to do in the future."

The new welding lab, which is not yet completed, will have state-of-the-art booths for students, separated into red and blue, depending on the type of welding the students are doing.

The lab is also connected to a classroom, where students are OSHA certified before entering the lab, according to Emmons.

"We had, maybe, half this before," Emmons said. "The welding lab is such a large part of our programs here, we needed something more. The students were having to double up in the booths because of the popularity of the program."

According to Emmons, students in the welding program can receive their AWS welding certification.

"These students will actually walk out with their certification," she said. "And now, they will have a state-of-the-art facility, so they can further their certifications and go out in the field quickly."

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Emmons said the students are responsible for the booths inside the lab.

"The students actually built these," she said. "So, they were involved in this construction process."

Emmons said it should be open in three weeks.

FCHS also has a new culinary arts classroom, with industrial equipment.

"Before, we only had the household equipment, but now we have the industrial equipment, so students will have more opportunities," she said. "Students can walk out of here with their industrial certifications."

Emmons said the classroom also retained the household items because students in the lower grades can use them for the basic health and nutrition classes.

Overall, Emmons said she is pleased with the construction and looks forward to the completion.

"We're so excited," she said. "The staff is happy and the students are excited when they walk into the new classrooms. I think it's going to be great for us."

Construction on the high school began on May 31, 2016.

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Christy Howell-Hoots is a reporter for The Ledger Independent newspaper, covering Bracken County

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