Kanawha County School in Disrepair; Principal Promises Fix

By: Lauren Schmoll Email
By: Lauren Schmoll Email

MARMET, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- As the new school year approaches, some parents in Kanawha County are worried about their kids' safety in the school where they'll return.

A viewer sent us photos of a classroom at Marmet Elementary in disrepair. With school starting next Friday, we wanted to find out what, if anything, was going to be done.

"I was told nothing was going to be done," one parent who wished to remain anonymous wrote. "I was also told that the plaster that was falling down was full of asbestos. The condition of this school is disgusting. It's dirty and not in good repair. I'm concerned for my kids."

WSAZ.com went to the principal to get some answers. She admits there is a problem.

"We need a new roof," Principal Polly Stevens said. "The one we have has leaked on and off. And there's been some water damage to some of the upstairs classroom walls."

She also told us a solution is already in the works.

"We are getting a new roof and after that the walls will be repaired," Stevens said. "So it's just going to take a little time and we'll get to that."

That means the solution won't come before kids get back to school. But Stevens says it should happen within the next couple of months. In the meantime, she doesn't want parents to worry.

"There's no asbestos up here, and their children will be in a safe environment," Stevens said.

She gave WSAZ.com a tour of the building, which included new central air in some rooms, new window units in others, a fresh paint job in the hallways, renovated bathrooms with new high-powered hand dryers, and a brand new LCD television.

Stevens promised that kids at Marmet are still getting the best education possible, despite the school's cosmetic issues.

"What impact does this have on the educational experience?" WSAZ.com asked.

"It really has none for our kids," Stevens said. "They flourish. They love to come to school."

How soon that new roof will get on will depend on how soon the contractors are able to start the job.

As soon as it is complete, maintenance crews will repair the plaster on the walls.

There is also some damage to walls under old, leaky windows. That will be repaired after the school is approved for new windows.

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