“A new Harding needs to be built as soon as possible.”
This is the message Harding High School student Jequan Norris wanted city officials to hear when he met with them for a roundtable discussion prior to Monday evening’s rally.
Norris had previously reached out to the mayor’s office, showing them pictures and video of the deplorable conditions at the 89 year old school.
During the meeting, he described bathrooms without doors, ceilings with missing panels that exposed leaking pipes, rodent droppings, and classrooms without windows or proper ventilation. (Below are some of the pictures Jequan took of Harding)
Norris, a junior at Harding, feels that a new school will have a positive effect on student pride and morale.
Like many others in the city’s east-end and east-side community who came out to Monday’s rally, Norris wants the Board to act quickly and approve the school’s site plan.
Unfortunately, time is running out for Harding. The Board has only a month to vote on the project’s site plan, or the state may take away the city’s grant.
Currently the Harding High School project is stuck in the Board of Education’s Facilities Committee, chaired by John Bagley.
So far, the committee has refused to vote until a remediation plan is submitted—completely ignoring the fact that the Board must first approve the building project’s site plan before a remediation plan can be finalized by the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.
New Channel 12 featured the video Norris presented to the city, and here are some of the pictures submitted. Keep in mind these are not pictures of the basement or unused areas; they are all pictures of classrooms and hallways students are currently using:
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