Greene County public schools closed until at least September 12

This just in from Greene County this morning:


By order of the County of Greene, all Greene County school districts are hereby directed to cancel classes for the week of September 6, 2011 through September 9, 2011. This decision is not solely based upon condition of school facilities, but upon road and bridge infrastructure that has not been adequately inspected and may be compromised. The state of emergency in Greene County is still in effect and travel is limited, particularly in the townships of Ashland, Lexington, Windham and Prattsville. This decision to cancel classes is relative to Article IIB of NYS Executive Law. Further information is to follow to all school districts and state education by Thursday afternoon, which will allow for final determination to re-open schools on Monday September 12, 2011.

Update, 3:35pm: A Twitter follower (hat tip to @aschae) alerted us to this page on the Windham-Ashland-Jewett school district's website, indicating that classes there will not begin until at least Monday, September 19. More details:

The district was declared a State of Emergency by the Board of Education and will continue to be closed through September 18.  No one is allowed in the building unless permission has been granted by Mr. Wiktorko, WAJ Superintendent.  Following guidance by New York State Department of Education consultants and other experts, the school continues to undertake a massive cleanup and restoration effort to get school open for the 2011-12 school year as quickly as practical. It is anticipated that the school will be open during the week of September 19, pending the restoration of all necessary utilities and appropriate safety clearances.  We will evaluate our progress continually and modify the calendar as needed. 

WAJ is working with various municipalities and school districts to secure alternate playing fields so that we can resume our fall sports season as soon as possible.  Our hope is to continue the fall sports schedule during the week of September 12th.

Currently, we expect to have all of our bus runs serviced by WAJ when the new school year begins.

The professional restoration teams are working on a 3-shift basis to remove the mud debris and moisture from the first floor of our main building and basement.  The basement has been pumped and rinsed by environmental cleanup experts.  They are currently working on all first floor classrooms and office spaces.  It is very probable that first floor carpets, wood flooring, and some tile will need to be removed and replaced.  Many cabinets, sheet-rock walls, paper supplies, and materials have been removed and will be replaced at a later date. The time requirements for ordering and manufacturing some of these products means that a few of the most significantly impacted rooms may not have all the final finishes when school reopens later this month.  Regardless of the amount of water and mud cleaned from each room, which varied from a few centimeters to several inches, all rooms will be treated with environmentally-safe products that will prevent and or destroy any possible contaminates.