CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Members of the state School Building Authority have again rejected Kanawha County school officials' appeal for state funding to renovate Andrews Heights Elementary School in Tornado.
This was the third time Kanawha County Schools Superintendent Ron Duerring has asked for funding for the school, which has to house students in four portable outdoor classrooms and has limited kitchen and cafeteria space.
"It would've been nice to get them out of the portables and into the building and expand the cafeteria, but we also have to remember we've gotten our fair share of School Building Authority money in the past. You can't get [approved] every time you go for a project," Duerring said after Monday's SBA meeting, where officials distributed $50 million for school projects to counties across the state.
Duerring, who had requested about $1.9 million for renovations to Andrews Heights, said the county already has taken measures to remedy any environmental problems with the portables after high levels of carbon dioxide and traces of mold were found in them in 2011.
While no money was awarded for the project, Scott Raines, the authority's director of architectural services, acknowledged the need for renovations to the school.
"This is probably the smallest kitchen I think I have ever seen" in a school, Raines said. "It's remarkable they can cook and provide food for students."
Last month, when Kanawha County officially requested the funding for renovations to the school, Andrews Heights Principal Suzanne Armstrong voiced safety concerns posed by the use of the portables.