Controversial middle school to stay open

May 14, 2008 3:38:32 PM PDT
The Houston Independent School District Board has voted to keep Key Middle School open.The Board voted unanimously to approve Superintendent Abe Saavedra's recommendation to use up to $3 million approved by voters last November in the bond issue election to be used for renovations at the school.

That will pay for new windows throughout the school and a new 315 ton chiller unit for the air conditioning system. The proposal also would fund electric reheat coils for the air handlers serving the auditorium to further improve the performance of the air conditioning system.

It's been a tough year for students and faculty at key this year. Many reported suffering symptoms such as nausea and headaches last year. The center for disease control was called by HISD to inspect the school and reported conditions at the school were consistent with 'damp building syndrome.'

Some teachers at the school say they are still feeling sick, despite the school being shut down for several months for $3 million of repairs and cleanup.

There was a consideration by HISD to move students to nearby Kashmere high school. Now the HISD superintendent, acknowledging protests from neighbors and community leaders, agreed to keep the school open.

"From the get go, I thought they should tear the whole school down and rebuild brand new," parent Tina Harris said.

The sentiment was echoed by neighbor Jean Manuel. "I think it's important because my kids and my grandkids ? went to school here," he said.


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