Washington, D.C., cleanup precedes opening day

Aug. 27, 2007
More than 1,600 people worked over the weekend to spruce up the district's school facilities.

Washington, D.C., needs to spend an additional $120 million to make emergency repairs to schools because the dilapidated buildings need more work than originally planned. That money would go toward 70 schools that have been spruced up over the summer and are ready to open when class begins Monday. However, the buildings have a backlog of work orders and code violations. In addition, the funds will address heating and air-conditioning problems throughout the system.
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ALSO: For more than 1,600 Washington, D.C., employees, residents, parents and volunteers, Saturday was a day of work. The crowd fanned out to the city's 141 public schools to pull weeds, paint, trim shrubs and perform other manual labor as part of the annual beautification day, the school system's traditional back-to-school cleanup held the weekend before classes start.
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EARLIER: Washington, D.C., School Superintendent Clifford B. Janey says the school system will spend $23.2 million to fix leaky roofs and faulty bathrooms and make other repairs in 33 schools starting immediately. The newest repair plan comes after a $2.2 million "blitz" program at three elementary schools: Martin Luther King Jr., Green and Hendley. The work is part of a $75 million program to make emergency repairs at schools that were not slated to be renovated or modernized for several years. (Washington Post)

Most of those connected with Washington, D.C., schools agree that many buildings are in dire need of renovation and repair, but the City Council and the school district are squabbling over who will have control over $1 billion in contracts to make some of the necessary changes. Parents and their children are caught in the middle as they wait to see whether promised school renovations will stay on schedule. (Washington Post)

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