Pupils at P.S. 109 got to finally play in their East Flatbush school’s brand new gym unveiled on Jan. 12.
Students, school officials, and parents attended the ribbon-cutting ceremony of the hard-wood gym floor. After an unfortunate water damage during a school vacation, the gym was shut down for 16 months forcing teachers and administrators to use other areas of the school for recreational activities. But no more alternatives, said parent coordinator Laurentina Mattews. Excited students happily welcomed their new gym.
“They were very happy and they couldn’t wait,” she said. “Once we got the okay, the kids were in there the next day.”
Councilman Jumaane Williams (D–East Flatbush) also attended the gym’s debut and cut the ribbon with several students.
During the gym closure students still kept up with their physical activities in staircases, the school’s lunchroom and when the weather allowed it — outdoor in the schoolyard. Matthews said teachers found ways around the inconvenience, but some areas made it hard.
“They made it work so the kids could get to do gym activities,” she said. “I’m very excited it’s back up — we would also use any space and the library sometimes but there’s only so much you could do in the library.”
The new gym looked similar to the previous gym, but the new one has shinier parts and sports a personalized signature of the school such as the school’s lion logo and name, said Matthews.
Now that the gym is open many events can resume.
“I’m very excited it’s back up — now we can have our father’s day game and meetings and all that good stuff, and on Fridays we have our parents and staff basketball games,” added Matthews.