NEWPORT, R.I. (WJAR) — A photo posted online of a dead mouse inside Rogers High School in Newport has caused an uproar from students and parents demanding better building conditions.
"The city is slum lords and it's showing in the way they're keeping their buildings," said Melody O'Brien, whose son is supposed to attend Rogers next year as a freshman.
“There’s mice everywhere," added senior Sierra Wright. "Mold in the classroom. There’s leaks.”
Allaria Trombley Robinson told NBC 10 News she saw a mouse in her classroom on Wednesday.
“I was sitting in the chair and the mouse just ran right by me," she said. "I hopped up and I ran out of the classroom and went right to the dean.”
School officials are aware that mice have been seen in the building, along with other problems that the over 60-year-old building has. They said exterminators are there regularly to try to keep the pests at bay.
“They can exterminate all they want, but they’re still here,” said O'Brien.
Rogers was one of the 10 worst rated schools in the state after an audit was done on all the buildings in 2017. A bond vote to fund a new school is on the November ballot, but even if that passes, a new building is five to seven years away. Students and parents think something needs to be done in the meantime.
“(Students) refuse to eat school lunch," said junior Shelby Bishop. "Half the kids are worried about if a rat’s been running in the kitchen. That’s disgusting.”
Others shared similar sentiments.
“Something needs to be done,"said Bella Pine. "It’s disgusting. It’s not OK.”