With only five days left before the start of school, some of Remington Elementary's teachers are down on their knees getting ready. They're recreating the classrooms they had before the May tornado. Paula Thomas lost many of the books and much of the paperwork from last year's lessons. "Most people just go in their room and rearrange it, but we're having to start from scratch basically. Most of us are changing rooms, basically starting over," she said.
The nighttime tornado plucked the roof off the school and water poured in, causing an entire wing to be flooded. The cleanup and repairs took all summer. "There was a tree in the window. Water was dripping everywhere," said Melinda Elkind, third grade teacher. Now walking down a hallway that looks new, the principal sees it as something of a blessing. "The whole roof has been replaced," said Judy Fessenden, principal. "They've painted all the walls and the lockers. All the rooms have been painted and all new flooring has been placed in the rooms and in the halls."
The repairs delayed the return of the teachers, so most are working long hours to clean and decorate their elementary classrooms. The teachers are happy to be in new rooms with new materials. "Everything's new, everything's clean," said Suzanne Sager, fourth grade teacher. "We're excited about being clutter-free. I'm excited about getting everything organized and together." The students return Wednesday, August 11th and the Remington teachers say they'll be ready.