BELLAIRE - St. John Grade School students are temporarily receiving their education in a different location. Fortunately, they don't have to travel too far.
The students are going to class at St. John Central High School, right across the street. Over the Christmas break, extremely cold weather caused pipe damage in the grade school building. Repairs are taking longer than originally anticipated.
Rather than delay students returning to school, grade school and high school principals and teachers decided to house both student bodies in the high school. Patricia DeFrancis, Communications Director at the Roman Catholic Diocese of Steubenville (to which St. John Central schools belong), said the solution will keep the school's calendar year from being extended into June.
"Everybody is pleased that this was able to be worked out. It's a good temporary solution to get the kids back to school," DeFrancis stated.
While grade school students are somewhat familiar with the high school thanks to using the school's gym, officials are still making an effort to keep the age groups segregated. Grade-schoolers will attend class in one section of the building while high-schoolers will remain in a different section.
Grade school Principal Victoria Nurczyk said that students are gathering in the mornings in the basement of St. John Church and being walked over by teachers to the high school. DeFrancis joked that the young students consider it a little adventure. The daily schedule remains the same as always for both sets of students.
The situation is temporary, though at this time it is unknown exactly how long it will be until the grade school building is useable again.
Warner may be reached at mwarner@timesleaderonline. com.