Hardin High School has started what district officials believe will be a new tradition with students being given the opportunity to purchase, paint and customize their parking spots in the student parking lots.
“We are letting our students take ownership of this part of their campus. It’s the start of a new tradition. When they think back on their teenage years, we want them to have a piece of Hardin High School in their memories. With this being the 80th anniversary of Hardin ISD, and after providing an awesome education to students for these 80 years, we are still willing to try something new,” said High School Principal Stacy Tucker.
The high school parking lot project was first suggested by students two years ago, but the COVID-19 pandemic waylaid many initiatives, Tucker said.
“This was one of the requests made by students in their student surveys. This is our first year back on track with improvement ideas since the pandemic began,” he said. “We believe it will increase school spirit and improve the campus.”
To participate in the parking lot painting project, students made a commitment, first through a $75 donation to secure their spot, then through the design and approval process. The most challenging part, the actual painting itself, meant sitting in the hot sun for hours as they applied the paint and design elements.
“They are using a paint that will last throughout the year. It’s a waterproof outdoor paint. That way, we can prime over it next year for another student or powerwash it off,” Tucker said.
At last count, the student parking lots – located next to the high school gym and agriculture science building – were adorned by roughly 20 painted spaces. More will be finished, weather permitting, by the time school begins on Aug. 12.
“We have 40 students signed up so far out of 75 spots. I think that’s a good start,” Tucker said.
The students’ artistic talents are impressive, he added. One features a VW Bug, another looks like a Hollywood marquis sign and one has a smiley-face emoji.
“We have a student who is putting up the college he plans to attend – TCU. Right now they are trying to get the horned frog mascot on the parking space. They are all really good and super creative,” he said.