Montclair High Closed Tuesday Folllowing Friday’s Stairway Collapse

Montclair Schools Superintendent Kendra Johnson sent the following email to parents and guardians:

On Tuesday, September 11, 2018, we will close Montclair High School for students and staff. The purpose of this closing is to further analyze the structural soundness of each staircase at Montclair High School. As you know, on Friday, September 7, 2018, we closed one set of stairs (see the message from Interim Principal Trigg Scales below). We immediately blocked off the staircase, and then we rerouted all students and staff to the remaining four staircases.

Today, we had several officials, including our engineers, on site to assess our high school buildings. As a result, we will close Montclair High School tomorrow, September 11, 2018. For the safety of our students, staff, parents/guardians and visitors, I am directing that both buildings are closed to all students, allparents/guardians, all visitors and all staff (only exceptions include: (1) select facilities team members focused on a ground level project and (2) district facilities consultants – engineers, vendors and architect). Select sport teams will be allowed to practice using the Field House and associated fields only. Coaches received a communication regarding this topic earlier today.

It is my hope to open Montclair High School on Wednesday, September 12, 2018. Here are my commitments to you:

Focus on Safety – I will make critical decisions that promote the safety of our students and staff. While closing the high school the second week of the 18-19 school year is disappointing, it is a necessity. Once we re-open the high school, I will share the plan to address our compliance with state required seat time for all high school students. Safety is always the focus.

Ongoing Communication – I will provide daily updates on or before 5:00pm. In the update, I will inform if we will open school the following day. My goal is to assess the building daily to make an informed decision. Safety is always the focus.

Status of the Repairs – Our district architect and Director of Building and Grounds will provide an update to the Montclair Board of Education on September 17, 2018 at or around 7:45PM. If you are interested, you may attend the Board Meeting or watch the Board Meeting live on Channel 33. The meeting will be posted to our district website within 72 hours of the meeting. Safety is always the focus.

Thank you in advance for your support. Enjoy your day!

With excellence, equity, social justice and access,

Dr. Kendra Johnson, Superintendent

Montclair Public Schools

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