Steamboat Springs Hayden Valley Elementary School teachers are eager to welcome back their students Tuesday after a weekend flood filled some portions of the school with ankle-deep water and cancelled a day of classes.
Principal Rhonda Sweetser said the cleanup wasn't fun — and neither was having to cancel school Monday — but the hard work of the school's staff, maintenance crew and a local carpet cleaner made the process much easier.
“We lucked out we had a teacher who came in to make copies at 7 a.m. on Saturday and saw it,” Sweetswer said about the flooding that is believed to have resulted from a cracked filter case in a boiler room sometime Friday night or Saturday morning. “Otherwise it could have been much worse.”
She said the floodwater in the school's gymnasium was ankle deep and also spread to the school's kitchen, cafeteria and a couple of classrooms.
The cleanup and drying-out process started Saturday, and staff spent Monday getting classrooms back in order.
“The staff has been incredible,” Sweetser said. “They are just troopers. They came in in their jeans and worked hard as a staff to get all the classrooms back together.”
Sweetser said district officials don't yet have an estimate for the damage caused by the flooding. She said school staff hopes the gymnasium floor can be salvaged along with electrical components like SmartBoard cords that were exposed to the water. Some books in classrooms were destroyed by the flooding.
“It's not fun and it's not good, but we'll push through this,” she said.
Sweetser said she couldn't remember a time in recent history the school had to close, even on days when the temperature outside reached 30 degrees below zero.