Vancouver Fire crews worked late into the night to douse a four alarm blaze at Sir Guy Carleton Elementary in East Vancouver.
With the damage settling in, Vancouver School Board trustee Patti Bacchus says the board is exercising its options as the school year fast approaches.
“I’ve been in contact tonight with both Mike Lombardi, the chair of the board, and the Superintendent of schools. The Superintendent is working with his staff to see what the next steps will be.”
There is a second building to Sir Guy Carleton that was shut down last year.
Parents say they want that building used as a temporary solution, with portables, to house 280 students.
Parents and students watched as part of the school’s roof collapsed, as firefighters hosed water into the school.
Scott Macdonald has been a teacher at Sir Guy Carleton for 10 years.
“It’s directly overtop of a Kindergarten-Grade 1 class, another Kindergarten-Grade 1 class, and also on this side, a Grade 3 class.”
Vancouver Fire says the school can be saved, but has suffered extensive damage.
No indication so far if student will need to transfer schools
Vancouver School Board trustee Patti Bacchus says it’s too early to tell if students will need to go to another school.
Parent Evelyn Torrefel says the school is essential for her son Cole, in grade 5.
“Like him, he has ADHD, they’ve helped a lot, with my son. They need to give this help for these people, especially for special-needs kids.”
In a statement, the Vancouver School District says there have been no reports of staff or students being on site when the fire started.
VSB is conscious this will be an upsetting development for the students of the school and their families shortly before the start of the new school year. The district will be assessing the school buildings over the next few days to determine whether or not students and staff can remain at Carleton for the start of school in September.
Senior VSB staff will be meeting over the weekend to make a plan for the future of the school’s impending students.
Carleton was named on the list of 12 schools being considered for potential closure, but it is too early to say what impact, if any, the fire will have on that process.
Hard to see but crews taking turns up the ladder, hosing the roof. Concentrating on one area. pic.twitter.com/QGUqoACMPs— Emily Lazatin (@EmilyLazatin980) August 20, 2016