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HOUSTON -- At Marshall Elementary in northeast Houston, teachers want everything to be just right for the first day of school.

Looking good, said Baltazar Vasquez, an incoming fourth grader.

Vasquez showed off paintings of Dr. Seuss in the school s hallway.

The school s principal Hilario Martinez said he wanted to transform Marshall Elementary.

Old green walls were painted with characters from storybooks.

Martinez said he wanted to spark children s imaginations from the moment they walk in the door.

The building has undergone a dramatic transformation. New computers and smart boards will be ready to go before classes begin Monday.

Things at Marshall haven t always been so nice.

The school in the 6200 block of Winfield had been part of North Forest Independent School District for about ten years.

It was handed over to the Houston Independent School District because of failing academics and mismanagement.

Martinez said his students will be coming from other schools in the area that were falling apart.

We re providing [the students] with a safe clean environment that s conducive to learning, Martinez said. So I think that s the biggest difference that the parents and the community will see.

Things were different.

Classrooms have new furniture that has been arranged in a different way that s supposed to help students learn more quickly.

All of Marshall s teachers will be new to the school which will have 800 students.

I thought that it was great because the other district wasn t acceptable and I think kids in this area deserve a better opportunity, said Baltazar s mother. You know they deserve a better education.

Little Baltazar said he can t wait for classes to start at the new school in northeast Houston.

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