Fox Elementary students could be a step closer to entering a classroom

Fox Elementary.png
Posted at 10:40 PM, Feb 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-23 14:52:48-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- Fox Elementary students could be a step closer to returning to a classroom after a Tuesday night Richmond School Board meeting.

Richmond Public Schools (RPS) Superintendent Jason Kamras said in the meeting he would like to move forward with repairs at Clark Springs Elementary.

The school board authorized $500,000 to move forward with that request.

Kamras reiterated that he thinks Clark Springs is still the best option for Fox students and teachers, as it's close to the Randolph neighborhood where many Fox families live.

St. Benedictine, another suggested location, is large enough for the students, but isn't outfitted to accommodate young children along with other issues. St. Gertrude, another suggested location, is also in need of repairs.

Kamras and another board member also expressed concern about the district pouring money into a property that isn't theirs.

He estimates that $500,000 should cover all repairs that are needed at Clark Springs including roof leaks, plumbing, painting, HVAC and landscaping. He estimated that repairs could be completed shortly after spring break.

If things go as planned, students could possibly be in the building as soon as this spring. If not, students will enter those classrooms in the fall.

As promising as this plan sounds, there wasn't a final decision made on whether students will be temporarily be moving to Clark Springs.

The board is set to consider a formal recommendation on their next steps at their March 7 meeting.

However, as this is the favored option by Kamras, he said he wants to get the ball rolling on repairs as soon as possible.

RPS Education Foundation's Executive Director Ty Toepke said $150,000 has been raised specifically for Fox Elementary from the education fund, and donations are still coming in.

Toepke also said RPS has received an additional $115,000 in corporate gifts which are eligible to be used across the district, not just for Fox.

One parent at that was in attendance has a more positive outlook after the meeting. "I think I have a clearer picture of the magnitude of the problem, which gives me a little compassion for the lack of answers," said Becca Duval.

She's planning a "march to fund safe schools" for the weekend. "The fight that we’re in is not against the insurance company or the alarm company or the fire department or any member of RPS. We need more money, so it doesn’t happen again," said Duval.



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