Barrington Middle School remains closed due to leaky roof

Barrington Middle School will remain closed Thursday as workers continue to repair the school’s leaky roof. (WJAR)

Barrington Middle School will remain closed Thursday as workers continue to repair the school’s leaky roof.

Students were not allowed at the school on Wednesday, but there were plenty of garbage cans and buckets inside collecting melting snow and rain water.

“We’re lucky that these things happen at night and not when the kids are in the classroom” Kathy Sullivan Crain, a parent said. “It’s a safety issue at this point.”

Crain said she received a robo-call Tuesday night, which informed her that the school would be closed due to several roof leaks, including in eight classrooms, as well as in the library and boy’s locker room.

After the storm that hit the area Tuesday, she wasn’t surprised to hear school was closed.

“You send your kid to school on a cold day with ice and rain and, you know, you kind of cross your fingers,” Crain said.

Superintendent Michael Messore said the 20-year-old roof will be replaced or resurfaced.

“(We’re) still dealing with the ice that’s on the roof,” he said. “It is cleaning the leaks that took place in the classroom and doing some remediation work that we have to do.”

But parents are looking ahead to Thursday night -- that’s when the town will finalize a vote to exceed the 4 percent cap on the increase in the town’s total tax levy. The funds will be used to finance construction of a new middle school, which will be built right next to the existing one.

For parents like Crain, supporting a new school is a no-brainer.

“If that were your house, would you let your kids live there?” she said. "It’s a safety issue and I think that as a community we really need to concerned about the fact that we’re allowing our kids to go to this school.”

The public vote for the new middle school will take place Thursday at 7 p.m. at the Barrington High School auditorium.

As for the middle school, Messore said an air quality test will be done to check for mold.

“Our custodial staff, roofing company, and professional cleaning company, have been hard at work cleaning and remediating. Due to the number of rooms impacted, the number of people cleaning/remediating, and the amount of machinery being used to clean, restricted access is necessary,” a message to parents noted. “Once cleaning and remediation have been completed, air quality testing will be conducted.”

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