Tens of thousands sign online petition to close Richmond school

Posted at 6:41 PM, Sep 17, 2012
and last updated 2012-09-17 21:33:31-04

Richmond, VA (WTVR) – Nearly 20,000 people have signed an online petition, asking the Richmond School Board to shut down Norrell Elementary School.

The campaign was started after the school district decided to reopen the school last month. It was built on a landfill and shut down twice before.

The first time the school was closed was in 1975 because of a buildup of methane gas. It was then shut down again in 2006 when it was damaged by Tropical Storm Ernesto.

Community activists claim gases still exist under the school and that it would be toxic for students.

However, the City of Richmond and the Environmental Protection Agency say there is no evidence that points to unsafe conditions.