Principal in Louisiana is giving students a creative outlet during the pandemic

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SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – COVID-19 has put a strain on many in the community and a Shreveport principal is working to give her students a creative outlet during the pandemic.

“It inspires because it has different words telling you to dream big and that you can do whatever you want, become whoever you want and dream big,” said Cha’vaneti Dupree who is a fifth-grader at Linwood Public Charter School and she’s explaining how she and 15 of her classmates help create a mural in their school courtyard over the Christmas Break.

“With the blue me and my friend Chloe, we painted that part and then the yellow I painted.”

A mural she says inspires her everyday.

“It’s helpful to me because it encourages me to be who I want to be, don’t let anybody take my joy away from me,” said Dupree.

It’s called Dreamers and is designed by Shreveport public artist Kadavien Baylor in partnership with the non-profit S.C.O.R.E and Linwood Public Charter School.

“It was an opportunity to address a lot of the issues that occur after COVID when children aren’t able to tape into creative enrichments or even connect with other students that go to their school, their friends,” said Kadavien Baylor, Artist of the mural.

“Right now the community is struggling in a lot of ways, with all the negative things we see and hear so, we’re just trying to be a bright light in the community and do something positive for the community, as well as the children of the community,” said Larry Wilson, C.E.O of the Non-Profit S.C.O.R.E

The vision for the mural came from the principal of the school Starla Ross, wanting to develop a creative space for students and teachers to see beyond what they see on a daily basis with living in a pandemic.

“What I hope to bring through this is even though we are in some struggling times and there is this pressure that we’re against. I still want us to see the beauty that can come out of it, like a diamond and almost like a 2Pac Shakur the rose that grew out of the concrete. How can we still inspire and grow the roses that our children our and grow the roses I know my staff is every day,” said Starla Ross, Principal for Linkwood Charter School.

It took 10 days for the kids to paint the mural.

If you would like to learn more about the non-profit S.C.O.R.E you can click here.

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