Park Elementary to reopen on Thursday, cleanup from lightning strike continues
KEARNEY, Neb. — After missing a few days following a storm, students at a Kearney elementary school will be returning to their building.
Kearney Public Schools says school will be back in session at Park Elementary on Thursday. Students will attend a pre-planned field trip on Wednesday.
The school has been closed since Friday night when lightning struck its brick chimney. A news release says 90% of the roof, three HVAC units and the Train Building Automation System all sustained damage and will need replaced. Springer Roofing, who replaced the roof last summer, is patching the roof for now and will replace it again this summer.
“We are anxious for our students to return to Park,” Principal Chance Waggoner said in a news release. “We have a lot of fun and exciting events coming up in the next week to celebrate the end of a great school year. We won’t let a few ceiling leaks set us back.”
Photos shared by the school also show several interior areas with water leaks.
“The good news is that all electrical, technology, fire alarm, security system, phones, and fobs are up and running,” said KPS Director of Facilities Trent Bosard. “We have a lot of wet areas in the building that will dry out in the next couple of days.”
The release says an insurance claim adjuster was on site Tuesday, but an accurate estimate will not be available for a few weeks.
“They were on site to assess and clean up the damage and to evaluate the possibility of whether we could hold school,” Superintendent Jason Mundorf said. “Kudos to Trent Bosard, his staff, and our teachers at Park Elementary for substituting in the district on Monday and Tuesday. We are excited the damages weren’t more extensive and that our Park students will be able to finish their school year out in the building with their classmates and teachers.”