Mount Vernon High School to remain closed

April 13, 2010 3:44:46 PM PDT
Engineers spent the day assessing and inspecting the damage at Mt. Vernon High School. An exterior wall of the auditorium collapsed on Monday, sending tons of bricks and cinder block crashing down in what the principal said sounded like a bomb.

The school will remain closed. Administrators are hoping to reopen part of the building next Monday.

The plan would be to divide the school's 1400 students and send them to Nellie Thorton High School or Nelson Mandela High School, splitting the day into morning and afternoon sessions.

As of now state officials have deemed Mt. Vernon high unsafe. The collapse sent debris crashing through the roof of area building that houses career and technical education units like wood shop, auto shop and a tv production studio. The cause is not yet known.

The auditorium is capable of holding hundreds of people. Luckily at the time of the collapse there were no students inside.

The high school was built in 1964. Two years ago it received a satisfactory rating, despite problems with the roof.

A board trustee says maintenance has been deferred because of budget problems.