[SeMissourian.com] Fair ~ 88°F  
Heat Advisory
Friday, Aug. 22, 2014

Delta High School staff begins moving back in following fire

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

(Photo)
Fire restoration crews work at Delta High School Monday, Aug. 16, 2010 to get the school ready to open again after a fire in the school offices Friday. The fire damaged offices of the principal, secretary, counselor, nurse and the records room. Nearby classrooms also had smoke damage.
(Fred Lynch)
Some of Delta High School's staff worked out of their own offices Tuesday for the first time in more than two months.

The high school's principal, counselor and secretaries having been sharing space in Delta Superintendent Nate Crowden's office since an Aug. 13 fire damaged the school's main office area.

The Cape Girardeau County Sheriff's Department determined the fire was arson, but have still not made an arrest in the case.

"We've interviewed the usual suspects, and we have ideas on who it may be, but we're not getting information out of them," Cape Girardeau County Lt. David James said Tuesday. "That's as far as it goes."

The investigation can be actively worked for up to three years, according to Missouri statute.

While some cleanup from the fire needed to be complete before students returned to class, restoration crews and additional contractors have been working to renovate the most severe damages the last six to seven weeks, Crowden said. Workers tore out and replaced the ceiling and tile flooring, insulation and also repainted all the walls.

Also, computers sent to a company in St. Louis to be cleaned have been returned to the school and are back in use. Although the school's insurance company covers the restoration costs, Crowden estimated recovery costs to exceed $200,000.

"It took awhile to do all that. It looks pretty good now," Crowden said. "It has went faster than we thought it would."

Despite the progress, there's still work to be done.

Crowden said staff has been busy making copies of records saved in the fire. Initially, Crowden thought a lot of student records and schedules had been destroyed.

"I don't know if [there will} be any lost,[CloseDouble] he said. "It's a process still, but, we're actually thinking we're going to be able to salvage most of them."

He added that local businesses have donated copiers so staff could copy records either burnt or water damaged.

The 175 high school students started classes again Aug. 23, more than a week after the blaze. They'd only had one day of school before the fire occurred.

"They hate that it happened, but they seemed ready to be back in school," Crowden said.

And despite the arson suspect not being in custody, students and staff aren't letting the dilemma bother them.

"We got right back on schedule. It was a pretty good turn around," Crowden said. "There's not much talk of it among students."

Recently, concerns of having to extend the school year because of the fire were put to ease after the state commissioner of education made the decision to forgive the time off. Crowden said that puts the students back on schedule to be released May 13.

ehevern@semissourian.com

388-3635

Pertinent Address:

324 N. Liberty St., Delta, MO


Fact Check
See inaccurate information in this story?


Comments
Note: The nature of the Internet makes it impractical for our staff to review every comment. If you feel that a comment is offensive, please Login or Create an account first, and then you will be able to flag a comment as objectionable. Please also note that those who post comments on semissourian.com may do so using a screen name, which may or may not reflect a website user's actual name. Readers should be careful not to assign comments to real people who may have names similar to screen names. Refrain from obscenity in your comments, and to keep discussions civil, don't say anything in a way your grandmother would be ashamed to read.

Such a shame....I just don't understand why anyone would want to burn down a school for any reason. That action takes away from so many. I truly hope they catch who ever did this.

-- Posted by ryder53 on Wed, Oct 20, 2010, at 1:30 PM


Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration. If you already have an account on seMissourian.com or semoball.com, enter your username and password below. Otherwise, click here to register.

Username:

Password:  (Forgot your password?)

Your comments:
Please be respectful of others and try to stay on topic.

Map of pertinent addresses
Related subjects