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Classes return to normal after downpour floods Carver

By Staff
CLEANING UP Lapictetus Coleman removes water from Carver Middle School's flooded band room. Children were forced to wait in the gym after Monday rains flooded the upstairs. Photo by Paula Merritt/The Meridian Star
By Steve Gillespie/The Meridian Star
Aug. 29, 2001
Carver Middle School students were expected to return to classrooms today after heavy rains leaked through the roof, flooded rooms and sent children to the gym for part of Tuesday morning.
The only exception is the band room, which was expected to remain closed.
Maintenance workers discovered the school flooded when they arrived at Carver on Tuesday morning.
A downpour Monday night swept away plastic covering part of the school's roof that was being replaced, sending water through temporary roofing. Most of the water leaked through the center of a 7,000 square-foot section of the roof, where it slopes down to a 4-inch drain pipe.
Water logged
About 2 inches of water covered the carpet in the upstairs band room Tuesday morning. While custodians tried to remove the water, more continued to pour through the roof, onto the classroom chairs and onto the floors.
Water covered the hallways on the south side of the second floor, creeping into a custodian closet and covering a home economics classroom. Workers wore rubber boots and worked with mops and vacuum cleaners to clean the mess.
Carver Middle School's roof is being replaced by Norman Roofing in Meridian part of renovations that began this summer throughout the city school district.
Archie Scarbrough, the school district's executive director of facilities, said the damages are still being assessed. He and Mark Holcombe, estimator with Norman Roofing, both said the contractor's insurance will cover the damage.
Markham said water flooded the band room, chorus room, the career discovery classroom, two science rooms, two math rooms and the hallways. Smaller leaks were found in the amphitheater and library.
Books damaged
Markham said some textbooks were damaged, as well as some reading materials for the school's "Success for All" reading program.
Personal items, such as grade books and student work on teachers' desks, were damaged as well. Some computers also got wet, but Markham said he didn't know if they still work or if they must be replaced.
Scarbrough said carpeting and ceiling tiles will have to be replaced. He said he believes the district's maintenance employees got the water up quick enough to prevent damage to floor tiles.
Holcombe said work on the school roof will be approached in a different way to prevent future floods: The area around the drain pipe will be sealed and that section of the old roof will be replaced last.
While in the gym Tuesday morning, Markham said faculty and staff made the most of the situation by holding an orientation for students on classroom rules, behavior and conduct.
Steve Gillespie is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. Call him at 693-1551, ext. 3233, or e-mail him at sgillespie@themeridianstar.com. Staff writer Marianne Todd contributed to this report.

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