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While Racine Unified officials don’t yet know the cost of the fire that destroyed the Mitchell School gym or how long clean-up will take in the most heavily damaged areas, they detailed for Racine County Eye the effects of the blaze.
The southwest portion of the buildng suffered the most significant damage; totaling the multi-purpose room and, potentially, the kitchen area as well. A hallway on the second floor “is severely damaged, but salvageable,” RUSD spokesperson Stacy Tapp wrote in an email.
In the elementary school specifically, 25 classrooms – and the office – have water damage. The library and another 11 classrooms split almost evenly between the first and second floors, have serious smoke and water damage.
“There is water damage throughout all levels of the elementary school, with the most significant being in the first floor and basement areas,” Tapp added.
The status of murals created in the 1930s that may have been stored in the basement is unknown.
In the middle school, a hallway on the west side of the building was severely damaged by smoke, but classrooms are relatively unscathed because doors were closed. There is also water damage on the first floor affecting another 16 classrooms.
The auditorium and cafeteria on the northeast side of the facility are mostly unaffected but there is soot to clean up and deodorizing to be done.
“The is soot throughout all areas of the building to varying degrees, (and) all of this will need to be cleaned,” Tapp continued.
Elementary students are being relocated to Wind Point for the rest of the school year. Middle school students are expected to resume class on March 18, after spring break.
Several school supply drives are taking place to help elementary teachers and students gear up to finish the rest of the school year. Click here for a list of needed items and where donations can be dropped off.