Island leaders take notice, address problems with Sanchez High - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Island leaders take notice, address problems with Sanchez High

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by Krystal Paco

Guam - It's a safety and health concern and it's no longer going unnoticed as island leaders take action to address Simon Sanchez High School.

Following months of noise on just how bad their school facilities are, students at Simon Sanchez High School are finally seeing action as just yesterday, the Department of Education announced plans to initiate a temporary shutdown of the Yigo school.

At an impromptu Q&A with DOE superintendent Jon Fernandez this morning, students and staff expressed concerns as the shutdown would revert SSHS to a double-session schedule with neighboring school F.B. Leon Guerrero.

Teacher Ken Orlan said, "So us clearing out of the building is so they can do a full inspection. Is it possible to do such an inspection during the holidays where it wouldn't impact the classes?"

Although he's grateful to finally see action to his school, junior Dennis Dali has asked that DOE do more than bandaid fixes.

He said, "I think that you can't just bandaid this school. It's been done too many times and then we're going to have this problem and maybe my nieces, nephews will be here asking me that same thing. But my question now, like Mr. Orland pointed out - how will you accommodate students in for example, let's say ProStart, when they don't' have a kitchen to cook over there at FB?"

Despite concerns, the overall consensus from the school was clear.

DOE superintendent Jon Fernandez asked, "Do you think your school is safe? Do you want to go work at your ProStart classrooms if your school is not safe? Do you want to go in your gym if your gym is not safe? Do you want to go to any of your classes if your building is not safe?" all questions met with "No!"he then said, "So let me tell you what we're going to do: we're going to get the agencies in here to tell us if our building is safe. I think that's the priority."

Just this afternoon the Governor's Office released plans to authorize an inspection of the school as early as tomorrow morning.

This would include the Department of Public Works, the Guam Fire Department, the Department of Public Works, and the Guam Environmental Protection Agency.

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