West ISD plans to return students to school Monday

Posted Thursday, Apr. 18, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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Editor's note: This story has been modified from original version to correctly identify Connally school district.

The West Independent School District has come up with a plan that will get the town's children back in school by Monday.

District Superintendent Marty Crawford also said a plan has been developed to finish the semester, after an explosion at a fertilizer plant destroyed the intermediate school and left the high school and middle schools in an unsafe state.

"We are going to have everyone working to make the next month of school enjoyable," Crawford said at a news conference Thursday, stressing the importance of normalcy after the accident. "It's extremely important that we have consistency in these kids' lives."

The plan includes housing all 1,500 students in the district in West's existing buildings, and buildings provided by other school districts.

Pre-K to sixth-graders will be in West Elementary School. Grand Prairie ISD is donating three doublewide portable buildings for a sixth-grade academy, he said. Connally ISD will house the seventh- to 12th graders.

Crawford stressed that West will be providing the services, but needs help with the facilities.

He said he's confident that the district's faculty and staff are safe.

"We feel that all staff is accounted for. We're concerned about our students," he said.

Asked about the schools' locations being so close to the plant, he said that determination was made by officials before him.

"When I came to West that was one of my concerns, but we crossed our fingers," he said, addressing the costs of building new facilities.

Dustin L. Dangli, 817-390-7770; Twitter, @dussssstin

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