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Millions of dollars dedicated to decreasing portable classrooms

Posted at 10:36 PM, Nov 14, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-15 07:35:52-05

New permanent classrooms are on their way to some schools in Lafayette Parish.

The school system is using 25 million dollars in bond money to take away more than 30 temporary classrooms.

L. J. Alleman Middle School has a total of 26 portable classrooms, and one teacher who has worked there more than 20 years says when she started, there were only four buildings. Two of the original buildings remain, and the age is evident.

Principal Jennifer Gardner says she is happy that her school finally gets a chance for major change.

“The children run from class to class, and they get soaking wet, and sometimes, we dry the clothes for them in our laundry room in the PE department,” Gardner said.

Garnder shared school security footage with KATC; it showed the unsafe conditions for students.

“It’s just time. It’s time for the teachers, time for the children to get out of the rain and the cold, and provide a great learning environment full time,” Gardner said.

The portable buildings are known as “the other city.”

The teacher says that animals have gotten into the walls and died, and the birds make it hard for students to hear their teachers when they address the class.

One teacher has even gone as far as to buy a headset to teach her children because of the outside sounds.

“When I put it on, it amplified my voice, and when the AC comes on or the heater, it’s very loud, and this helps me to be able to communicate more effectively with the kids,” the teacher explained.

The time period for the renovations will be about 18 months. Edgar Martin Middle school will also get 3.25 million dollars to replace 10 buildings. The principal at Edgar Martins says the portable buildings at her school have been there since her son attended the school; he is now 31. She believes everyone will enjoy being consolidated in one building.