WEST (CBSDFW.COM) – Students in West are heading back to class, just over four days after a fertilizer plant explosion nearly leveled the town, destroyed homes and injured hundreds of residents. Three of the town’s four schools were damaged in the blast last Wednesday. For many students in West, going back to class could be the first step in a long healing process.
The West Independent School District is small, with only five campuses housing less than 1,500 students.
The elementary school will open its doors, but some neighboring towns are coming to the rescue for other kids. Some classes are forced to resume in Connally and even in the Hillsboro Independent School District — a West sports rival. “At times like these, it doesn’t matter,” said Hillsboro student Wagner Norris. “We’re just trying to help the community as much as possible.”
“It’s a pretty good rivalry,” added Hillsboro student Korey Campbell, “but anything to help out.”
Blake Divin of Hillsboro also said, “We just want to help out, give them everything they need and have it for them.”
Some classes are being held in temporary trailers parked behind school buildings, or vacant schools which have been quickly refurbished and loaded with supplies for students. Officials in West are not sure how long the children will have to endure these conditions. Superintendent Marty Crawford said that West Intermediate School may be damaged beyond repair.
Some of the district’s teachers came back to work on Monday without having returned home yet.
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