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Sparta Schools Structurally Safe for Students to Return

Helen Morgan School classroom where ceiling tiles fell earlier this week remains closed until permanent fix is made.

Sparta schools are structurally safe for students to return Thursday after falling ceiling tiles in one building closed the district this week.

Schools were dismissed early on Tuesday and closed Wednesday after ceiling tiles fell in an annex classroom at Helen Morgan School. Temporary supports have been placed in this classroom, which will be closed to students and staff until a permanent solution is made, Superintendent Dennis Tobin said.

"At this time, there are no signs of any roof deflection or failure at any of our five school buildings with the exception of the one classroom at the Helen Morgan School," Tobin said in a message posted on the district's website Wednesday afternoon.

Tobin said "comprehensive" inspections and snow and ice have been removed from the roofs at Helen Morgan and Alpine schools. The engineer also inspected the roofs at Mohawk Avenue School, the middle school and high school. Snow and ice will continue to be removed from other district buildings and drain pipes will be cleared, the superintendent said.

"I am confident that all the necessary steps have been taken to provide for a safe reopening of school for all of our students and staff," Tobin said. "As with all emergencies we will look to implement certain district protocols and procedures to minimize or prevent any future weather related building issues."

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