Schoolhouse Beat

West (Texas) district reopens with a little help from its friends

With lots of help from other Texas school systems, the West Independent School District has been able to welcome students back to classrooms. Three of the district's four school buildings sustained significant damage last week when a fertilizer plant exploded and burst into flames, killing 15. The Waco Tribune-Herald says that West's students in grades 7 to 12 who were enrolled in the middle and high schools are being bused to Lacy Lakeview, Texas, and the former Connally Intermediate School. The Connally District closed that campus two years ago, but volunteers worked over the weekend to accommdate students; they painted hallways, buffed floors and made signs with encouraging messages for students. The Waco district donated furniture for the building, and the McGregor and China Spring districts prepared packages of school supplies for students. The Spring district donated 13 school buses to replace those damaged in the blast. Fifth- and sixth-graders normally at the intermediate school were moved to the elementary campus, where portable school buildings donated by Grand Prairie district are providing extra classroom space.

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