Thursday following the fire in a bathroom Wednesday morning. SD20 Superintendent Greg Luterbach issued the following letter Wednesday evening.
February 11, 2015
Dear SHSS parents, guardians and students:
This morning we had a small fire in one of the main floor bathrooms at Stanley Humphries Secondary School. The fire alarm was triggered and staff and students did a great job evacuating the building. Everyone safely exited the building. Fire, RCMP and ambulance dispatched to the school for safety precautions. The fire itself was extinguished by Mr. McKenzie, SHSS’ principal, but the bathroom sustained significant damage. In addition, the school suffered some smoke damage and the smell of smoke was throughout the building.
A decision was made to cancel school for the rest of the day while we assessed the damage and began making plans for the cleanup. All students were assembled on the field and informed that school was cancelled for the rest of the day. We worked with our transportation department to provide busing for all students who normally ride school buses. Students who needed medication or other absolutely critical items from within the school were gathered and a few staff members collected the items for those students. By 12:30pm all students had left the school site.
Given our need to clean the school and deal with the smoke damage Stanley Humphries Secondary School will be closed to students and staff on Thursday, February 12. SHSS students should not show up at the school on Thursday or take the bus in. The school will remained locked in order to secure all of the materials within it and to ensure we can proceed promptly with the clean-up. At this time, should any student have any critical items that absolutely need to be picked up prior to the school reopening please assemble in the front parking lot on Thursday between 2 and 3pm. No one will be allowed to enter the school except for district staff members who will be there to enter the building and pick up the specific, critical item.
We have already begun our cleanup efforts. We are bringing in a specialist crew from the Okanagan to help with smoke damage remediation. That crew will begin their efforts on Thursday, February 12th. We are unsure how long the clean-up will take but our goal is to have staff and students back in school as soon as it is safe.
I personally want to thank the SHSS staff for doing a great job today under trying circumstances. My appreciation also extends to the first responders (Fire, RCMP and Ambulance) and our SD20 maintenance and transportation teams.
We will make the decision regarding the reopening of Stanley Humphries late on Thursday afternoon. For further information please check the district website www.sd20.bc.ca.
Superintendent of Schools