Highland Middle School kitchen fire cancels in-person classes for weeks

Superintendent Joel Freer says asbestos was found during an assessment of severe smoke damage and will require up to 12 weeks for abatement to be completed.

Blaise Gomez

Mar 27, 2024, 12:37 PM

Updated 21 days ago

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A kitchen fire at Highland Middle School in Ulster County last week has shut the building to students, staff and classes for several weeks, according to the district.
In a statement dated March 25 on the Highland Central School District website, superintendent Joel Freer says asbestos was found during an assessment of severe smoke damage and will require up to 12 weeks for abatement to be completed.
Highland Fire District officials say they responded to an early-morning automatic alarm at the building last Wednesday, which resulted in a second alarm requiring mutual aid.
District administration say students will pivot to remote learning upon the return from spring break, but that they are working on a plan to relocate middle school classes to resume in person learning.
So far, the cause of the fire is unknown.


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