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Video of rain in Lafayette High auditorium brings up need for school improvement, LPSS responds

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Posted at 9:16 AM, Oct 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-23 15:12:41-04

LAFAYETTE — Before rain began falling in the Lafayette High School Auditorium on October 14, work was already being done to reconstruct the roof.

According to LPSS, the issue has been addressed by the contractor.

And while it is a step forward, some are hoping the problem opens up a discussion about building a new auditorium for the school.

"I think it's time to replace the school," says Jackie Lyle. "The school itself is obsolete, landlocked and the largest public high school in the state. The facility is past its livable life."

While Jackie's children have graduated and no longer attend Lafayette High School, she's still invested in issues at the school.

"When I saw the video it was really dramatic," says Lyle. "More dramatic than any conditions I've ever seen in the theater before."

For the last few months the school's roof has been under construction.

Jennifer Gardner with LPSS says the contractor has taken care of the leak and cleaned up any pooling water.

"They're still working on the roof in between the rain," says Gardner. "They are doing what they can to wrap up the project so we can move forward."

For Lyle, she's hopeful that the school's facility could see more improvements soon.

"I think it's time that the citizens of Lafayette Parish recognize how much our schools need improvement to their physical plans in order for them to be safe," says Lyle.

LPSS says they will continue to monitor the condition of the roof and any leaks as more rain falls in the city.

Board member Justin Centanni released a statement following the surfacing of the video on social media of water falling from the ceiling of the school's auditorium during Monday's heavy rains:

"LPSS was notified of roof leaks at LHS at 4:30 pm on Monday afternoon. The roofing contractor, Rycars Construction from New Orleans, was notified immediately, who had no workmen on the site at the time, but two workmen arrived within two hours. LPSS personnel made arrangements for Guarantee Restoration Services to go to the school to begin water cleanup and drying services. The cost of these services will be paid by the roofing contractor. The contractor reports that all leaks have been addressed in advance of expected rain today. We will be monitoring the situation once the rain starts."

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