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Archive for Saturday, September 13, 2008

Leaky SJHS skylights not considered big deal

Students were noticing buckets placed around South Junior High School to catch raindrops from leaky window panes.

September 13, 2008

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On the street

How much does the rainy weather affect your mood?

Not much. I like it because it’s calming. The only thing I don’t like about it is that I work in a restaurant and more people tend to go out to eat when it’s raining.

More responses

Rainy days leave spirits damp

The new South Junior High School was supposed to open a new era for its students.

In contrast to the dark and decrepit building the school occupied for the last 30 years, the new school features futuristic classrooms and abundant skylights, a way for natural light to bounce across the walls.

One problem: Some of the skylights are leaking.

During the rainstorms that have hovered above Lawrence this week, students have noticed small buckets placed around the school, measures taken to catch raindrops as they drip in around caulking. District officials said it was an irritant but not a big deal.

South Junior High Principal Will Fernandez said his custodial staff and the school district were working to correct the problem.

"Obviously, with so much glass, there's going to be some leakage," he said. "Whenever that happens, we report it right away so the district can do what it needs to do."

The windows are still under warranty, and workers were at the school Thursday making repairs. Currently, only two leaks could be found. One is at the school's entrance; the other is in a hallway near classrooms.

"What I've seen is that it leaks, but not everywhere. We've got a couple of persistent leaks. We're trying to nail them down," said Tom Bracciano, the district's division director of operations and facility planning.

Bracciano said leaky roofs plague other schools, including Central, Southwest and West junior high schools.

"From our standpoint, there are no structural problems," he said. "It's more a pain in the rear to keep calling the window people back, to call the roofers back."

Still, Fernandez said there is some cause for concern.

"There are some safety implications when it leaks, especially when it leaks on the stained concrete ... but we get our custodians on it right away and we try to correct the problem," he said. "We're on it."

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