Poland Central School District students will get another day off on Friday following a fire in the school basement early Tuesday morning.

Staff, however, will report to school for a partial day with teachers and instructional staff working a half day in the afternoon and clerical staff starting mid-morning. The return date for students will be re-evaluated on Friday, district officials said in a release.

Students will not have to make up the missed time because the state classifies the missed days as extraordinary condition days under the “destruction of school building” category.

Students who rely on the district for transportation to other schools will receive that transportation on Friday as they did on Thursday.

The junior prom will still take place on Saturday, but the Grand March will take place at West Canada Valley.

During the half day, instructional staff will talk about communicating with students next week, prioritizing lessons for the rest of the year and going over classes that need to be moved and supplies that need to be replaced.

“We want to thank our students, staff and the school community for their patience and understanding as we have worked on cleaning up and airing out the school building this week,” said Superintendent Laura Dutton in a release. “We’re looking forward to soon returning our focus to our primary mission: educating the students of this community.”

The cause of the fire remains under investigation, but it did not start in an area where work for the district’s capital project is taking place, according to the release. And the fire will not affect the project’s timeline, it said.

 

The fire caused heavy smoke and water damage to the basement storage area under the sixth grade classrooms, moderate smoke damage to the sixth-grade wing and minor smoke exposure to the rest of the building.

The district hired Claim Masters, of New Hartford, to clean the building and work began on Tuesday.

Contact reporter Amy Neff Roth at 315-792-5166 or follow her on Twitter (@OD_Roth).