Electrical fire forces 3,000 students out of the Union Square high schools

Friday, February 26, 2016

UNION SQUARE, Manhattan -- A fire in the basement of a large Union Square high school campus forced the relocation of 3,000 students to other school buildings Friday morning.

The fire broke out in an electrical panel in the basement of the International High School, which houses five high schools and a charter school just after 11 p.m. Thursday.

The fire was quickly put out, but it severely damaged the panel, which will require extensive repairs.

Because it is unknown how long it will take to fix, the 3,000 students who normally attend the schools were sent to other school buildings in the area.

Workers were performing electrical repairs on a generator in the basement when the fire started. The cause is under investigation.

The campus is the former home of Washington Irving High School, which was broken up into smaller schools in 2008.

--Staff and students of Gramercy Arts High School and International High School relocated to Xavier High School

--Staff and students of Academy for Software Engineering relocated to High School for Health Professions and Human Services

--Staff and students of High School for Language and Diplomacy relocated to Manhattan Comprehensive Night and Day School

--Staff and students of Union Square Academy for Health and Sciences relocated to P.S. 19