Joplin (Mo.) district estimates $151 million tornado damage to schools

June 6, 2011
School officials continue to meet with insurance adjusters, state and federal agencies

From The Joplin Globe: The Joplin (Mo.) School District estimates that it will cost $151 million to repair or replace facilities destroyed or damaged in a devastating May 22 tornado.

MAY 31: Seven students and one educator from the Joplin (Mo.) school district were killed in the May 22 tornado, officials reported on the district's Facebook page. The storm killed at least 140 people.

After a tornado that destroyed three schools and heavily damaged several others, officials in the Joplin (Mo.) school district vow that they will begin the 2011-12 on time on Aug. 17. The district has begun demolition of the damaged portion of East Middle School, and reconstruction will begin as soon as possible. Work also is beginning on repairing the administration building and Cecil Floyd Elementary.

MAY 28: District officials say they have accounted for the status of 100 percent of students and staff. The district has received an initial insurance payment of $5 million to begin rebuilding school facilities. PLJBD Architects, Crossland Construction and R.E. Smith Construction are working with the district on rebuilding.

DONATIONS: Monetary donations for the Joplin school district are also being accepted. Checks can be made out to

Joplin Schools
Attn: Kim Vann
102 N Gray Ave.
Joplin, MO 64801

SUMMER SCHOOL: The district also says it will go forward with summer school beginning June 13, but will have to relocate some of the classes to campuses that have not been seriously damaged.

MAY 27: Five days after a deadly tornado devastated Joplin, Mo., school district officials say on Facebook that they have accounted for 97 percent of district students. As of Friday, authorities say that at least 132 people were killed in the tornado, and more than 150 people still are listed as missing.

MAY 24: Based on preliminary information, the Joplin (Mo.) school system estimates that more than 60 percent of families served by the district have been displaced by the tornado that tore through the community Sunday.

A fact sheet posted on the district's Facebook page spells out the damage to district facilities:

  • Three school buildings were destroyed, including the high school.
  • Three schools were severely damaged.
  • Two schools have possible roof damage.
  • Several district support facilities sustained some damage.
The remaining 11 buildings were not damaged, the district says.

MAY 23: The remainder of the school year in the Joplin (Mo.) district has been cancelled.

From the Joplin school district's Facebook page: "Due to the circumstances, the (Missouri) Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has allowed us to close school for the remainder of the year. We will let you know when students will be allowed in buildings to collect their belongings."

From The Joplin Globe: The deadly tornado that devastated Joplin, Mo., Sunday destroyed several school facilities, officials say. At least 116 people were killed in the storm. C.J. Huff, superintendent of the Joplin School district, says Joplin High School, Franklin Technology Center and Irving Elementary School were destroyed. Huff say Cecil Floyd Elementary and East Middle School both sustained heavy damage, including lost roofs and structural damage. Huff also says he heard reports of severe damage to Duquesne Elementary, and he assumed Kelsey Norman Elementary had been damaged because of its proximity to Joplin High School.

From Joplin Schools Facebook page: No school will be held on any Joplin school campus (Monday). Staff, don't report unless requested. Several district facilities have sustained substantial damage and we are assessing the situation. Currently, this is our only method of communication so please check back for updates.

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