Archives » January 13th, 2004

January 13, 2004

Schools’ Out

The school is still closed. The middle school where Viola works was closed last Tuesday when a student brought mercury to class. Now, a week later, it’s still shuttered. And they’re estimating that it’s going to stay closed for another week. Kids got mercury on their shoes and clothes, and tracked it around the school. Crews have been in there all week ripping out carpets and replacing furniture. Kids were throwing mercury at each other in the locker room. Now the entire locker room needs to be remodeled, including jackhammering the floor and replacing the drain pipes. Dozens of students have permanently lost personal belongings that became contaminated. Urine tests were being offered for any students or faculty who wanted to be sure their health checked out. Parents are angry because the school district isn’t keeping them informed about when the school might reopen, but the date keeps getting pushed back, and the most efficient way to disseminate information to 850 families is through the newspaper and the radio. Midterms have been pushed back by several weeks. Summer vacation will most likely be delayed by several weeks to make up the lost time. The student who brought the mercury to school and caused the whole thing is facing a suspension and possible lifetime expulsion from the Douglas County School District.

But little Sammy gets to have his mommy home all day, so at least he’s happy.