A clean up day is scheduled to begin at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday on the campus of Courtney Elementary School. The school’s gymnasium was destroyed Wednesday when an EF-2 tornado swept through the area. Other areas of the school sustained damage as well. The campus has been closed to students and staff since Wednesday.
Yadkin County Schools Superintendent Dr. Todd Martin said temporary fencing had been erected around the gym area, which sustained the most damage. With the clean-up efforts on Saturday, Martin said he hopes the campus will be safe for students to return on Tuesday for the last few days of school.
“We don’t want the last memories of the school year to be a tornado tearing up their school and knocking down their gym. We want to spend a few days celebrating the school year with them, letting them have their award days they typically have, if we can get them there,” Martin said.
Martin said it would likely be Monday afternoon before a decision would be made on if students and staff would be able to return to the campus.
Principal Dr. Jed Cockrell expressed his gratitude for community members willing to come assist with clean up on the school’s campus on Saturday.
Areas that are unsafe have been cordoned off and areas where community members can safely assist with clean up have been identified. Volunteers are asked to check in at the walkway in front of the school office where they will be assigned a clean up area.
Volunteers are asked to bring any of the following items they may have available: rakes, extra large trash bags, brooms, pick-up sticks for debris, step stools, paper towels, window cleaner, hauling trailers or wheelbarrows. Volunteers should also bring personal items such as a hat, sunscreen, work gloves and water. Children under 18 must be supervised and volunteers are asked not to bring power tools.
Areas of the campus that will be off limits include the gym, garden, playground, front marquee at the road and the ball fields.
Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-679-2341 or on Twitter and Instagram @RippleReporterK.