PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) — Bay County School Board Members approved nearly $10 million Tuesday to renovate Patronis Elementary School. 

“When they say they’re gutting it, they really are,” School Board Chairman Steve Moss said. “They’re taking it down to the studs and building it back.”

Moss said work will begin the day after school lets out on May 26th. 

“What’s key to the Patronis, is that holding those contractors responsible,” Moss said. 

Culpepper Construction out of Tallahassee won the bid for the renovation project.

“The board made sure that everybody was on the same page that you need to be done with this project the first week of August,” Moss said. “Cause whether you’re done or not, students will be on that campus.”

The school, located just off Thomas Drive was built in the mid-90s and opened in 1995.

“It’s been several decades since Patronis has been built, and so we’re using some funds,” Moss said. “The board decided today to basically do a total renovation of the school, and it needs it. Honestly, there are several schools that need a facelift, and Patronis is one of them.”

Several Patronis students happened to be attending Tuesday’s meeting. 

“They gave the Pledge of Allegiance and we told them about, hey, your school was getting a big facelift,” Moss said. “As a matter of fact, we’re voting on it today. And they were so excited. They said, tell us about, believe it or not, the hand sanitizers. Tell us about the technology. Tell us about, of course, they want to know about the playground.”

The renovation will be paid for with a half-cent sales tax.

Click here for a full breakdown of the renovation’s budget.