Scarborough Nursery School, Durham, NC

NC64 performed an extreme makeover that included painting the inside of the school, removing outdated playground equipment, power washing the outside of the building and installing a new sign. April 2004.

scarboroughNursery gets a touch-up

April 17, 2004 Outside, volunteers scrape and sand old white paint from the building at 309 Queen St. Inside, 3- and 4-year-olds color pictures that will decorate the hallways of their school Scarborough Nursery School, North Carolina’s first and oldest licensed child care center, is undergoing a face-lift this weekend. Volunteers are giving their time to revitalize the nursery school, which provides care for about 70 children between the ages of 18 months and 5 years. Scarborough Sr. founded the school in 1925, and although officials said it struggled to survive in the early years, the school is now supported through tuition payments, the Scarborough Foundation, the Department of Social Services and the United Way. However, officials said money is limited for facility improvements and beautification. Carl McMillon, the chairman of the school’s board of directors, coordinated this weekend’s cleanup effort. McMillon, who is also a member of a service organization at the WorldLegacy in Morrisville called N.C. 64, said he recruited about 70 volunteers from the group to help with the project. “I’d like to see the inside and the outside of this building celebrate both the history of the school, and the work that continues to go on in the school today,” McMillon said. Volunteers arrived at 7:30 a.m. Friday to begin renovations at the school. “We prepped, we sanded, we got rid of some of the mildew, and now we’re getting ready to do some of the inside work,” volunteer Karen Cathcart from WorldLegacy Leadership said Friday afternoon. The work will continue through the weekend, as parents, alumni, staff and N.C. 64 volunteers sand and paint the trim and the hallways, remove outdated playground equipment, powerwash the outside of the building and install new signs bearing the school’s name. “It’s amazing,” said the center’s executive director, Myra Scott. “All of this has come together in just the past few weeks. Carl asked me at the beginning of April what my dream was for the school, and the next thing I knew, the phones were ringing with people volunteering to help.” Cathcart noted that the work done by the volunteers wouldn’t have been possible without donations of food and supplies from Randy’s Pizza, Sal’s Pizza, Krispy Kreme, Jimmy John’s, True Value Hardware and Burke Brother’s Hardware in Raleigh. “We’re getting a lot done,” Cathcart said. “But the more volunteers we get out here, the more we can do for this school.” Scott also emphasized that more volunteers are needed. “We still need people to paint classrooms, we need roofing work done on the building, and we could use some clean mulch for the playground,” Scott said. “Those are the big-ticket things we still need.” Reprinted with Permssion The Herald-Sun, Durham, NC

Preschool children doing activities.

Preschool children doing activities.

TRIANGLE Scarborough Nursery School Nursery school gets a hand

Author: Benjamin Niolet; Staff Writer DURHAM — Four-year-old Latoni Cruse took a break from building a Lego tower and leaned in close, covering her mouth so the others couldn’t hear.   “Our school’s being painted,” she said. “I want to see pretty colors on it.” Latoni had in mind red, white or even green. When she comes back to Scarborough Nursery School after the weekend, she’ll actually see a color called “purple lace” on the walls. Latoni and her excitable, pint-sized classmates attend one of Durham’s oldest nursery schools. Scarborough was established in 1925 to serve black families. The children seem to enjoy school and its tasks of reciting the alphabet, painting, playing in a sandbox or with a classroom turtle named Rusty. But their building needs work.   Boards are rotting. The paint in the cafeteria and indoor playroom is teal and dirty. The toddler playground equipment outside looks as if it has been played on by too many children over too many years. So a group of volunteers are spending this weekend sprucing up the place, hoping to surprise and delight the children when they return. “I guess Monday what I really see is the excitement of the students, the teachers, the staff,” said Carl McMillon, chairman of the board for the school. McMillon is also involved in a program from the WorldLegacy in Morrisville. The center, which offers courses in leadership, among other topics, has a leadership team that coordinated the weekend of work. By Friday afternoon, volunteers had come from Virginia, Rocky Mount and Asheville. Alphonso Sumler, a home builder from Rocky Mount, tapped finishing nails into boards on the back patio. Sumler had never heard of the Scarborough school, but he heard about the chance to volunteer through his church. “If I can lend a helping hand, volunteer work, what you give will be given back to you,” Sumler said. The nursery was established by John Scarborough Sr., founder of the well-known Durham funeral home. Scarborough observed through his business that in many homes in Durham, children were been looked after by older children. The school, set up as nonprofit, began operating in 1925. It moved to its current downtown location on Queen Street in the early to mid-1970s, McMillon said. The building’s exterior has been worked on probably once since then, he said. Today the school has about 80 students, ranging in age from 18 months to 5 years old. The school is funded by tuition, the Scarborough Foundation, the state Division of Social Services and the Triangle United Way of Greater Durham. Linda Preston, a librarian from Asheville who belongs to the leadership group, swept dirt and dust from the paved walk surrounded the school Friday. Preston had little specks of paint on her cheeks, a holdover from her morning duties of scraping. “It’s a wonderful thing,” Preston said. “You can see how it will benefit children.” Reprinted with Permission Raleigh News and Observer