MARLBORO - The parents and students of the Marlboro school district are fighting to preserve a series of murals painted at an elementary school.

Retired Asher Holmes Elementary School art teacher David Wells says that he wanted the children to have a cheerful environment while attending school. To accomplish this, he and some of his students took to painting a series of colorful murals in the school’s hallways. The project dates back to 1973.

Wells began painting characters from classic children’s stories such as Snow White and 101 Dalmatians.

However, the district now plans to paint over the murals as part of a plan to upgrade the school. School officials say that the interior of the elementary school needs to be repainted because the walls have become beaten up over the decades.

Now, more than 800 parents and students have signed a petition to block the district from painting over the murals. However, school officials say that the district plans to create a committee to decide how to preserve the images, perhaps through a photograph collection.

Parents plan on attending a school board meeting Tuesday to voice their disapproval.