The majority of the damage from a pipe collapse in December at William Kelly Schools in Silver Bay was contained to a storage room at the high school, Superintendent Bill Crandall told the Lake Superior School District board of education Tuesday, Jan. 7.
The pipe off the main water line located under Banks Avenue collapsed, causing students to be dismissed early Dec. 12 and to miss four days of classes from Dec. 16-19. Staff returned on Wednesday, Dec. 18.
Only one bookcase in the storage room was damaged, but a tree in front of the building had to be removed when the pipe was dug up, as well as a butterfly garden completed by an alumnus Eagle Scout, Crandall said.
For missing so many days, students will have to make one up on Friday, Jan. 17. If there are any more snow days this year, students will have to make those up, as well, since the flooding ate into the district's spare make-up days, Crandall said.
Northland Construction and Jamar worked together to excavate the area and replace the pipe. The old pipe was 13 feet underground and the new pipe was placed 9 feet underground. Part of the process included replacing the meter and some valves on the connection inside the school.
The bills for the repairs to the pipe and the building haven't come in yet, said Sara Girard, business manager, but insurance and maintenance funds will help cover the expected costs.
Educators had the option to walk to the Rukavina Arena during the days that the water valve was shut off. If they stayed at the school, they had to improvise when using restrooms until the pipe was fixed, said Principal Joe Nicklay.
"Teachers were so game to fill up 5-gallon buckets with water out of the pool to use them to flush toilets on the days that they had to work," he said.