Beaumont Magnet Academy will celebrate the grand opening of the new Beaumont Arts Playspace with a ribbon cutting at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, May 22.
The arts integrated playground features an outdoor stage with chalkboard backdrop, outdoor musical instruments, an amphitheater, painted playground games, a mosaic staircase, sculptural entrance art and signs and several large murals by local artist Curtis Glover.
Beaumont art teacher and grant winner Cheryl Burchett applied for the Farmers Insurance “Thank America’s Teachers” Dream Big Grant during the summer of 2016. Her proposal was titled Transforming Problems Into Playspaces and focused on fixing some issues with underutilized spaces on the school’s playground by turning them into arts integrated spaces. Her proposal was selected as one of the 15 national finalists in Fall 2016. Much of the month of October was spent ask the community to vote for the proposal. In December 2016, BMA was awarded a $100k grant to bring this project to life.
Since that time, BMA has worked with Great Schools Partnership, who acted as the fiscal agent of the grant and provided Ben Epperson as project manager.
“It was important that this playspace reflect all that we do at Beaumont,” said Burchett. “As the only elementary arts magnet school in Knox County, we are already integrating the arts into our classwork inside the school. Now we will be able to take that arts integration outside, too! Students can play music, dance or act on a stage, draw chalk art and so much more. Beaumont is teaching our students to find creative solutions to problems and showing them that everything can be art!”