Teachers say West High School is falling down around them

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Staff at a Columbus High School said their school is literally falling apart. From crumbling walls and ceilings, to mouse droppings in classrooms, they said they can’t provide a high-quality education in a building that is falling down around them.

Concerned teachers and parents said something has to change.

James Murray loves being a teacher at West High School.

“We are a really awesome school. We’re a great school, we have great academics,” said Murray.

What he doesn’t love is a growing list of problems he said the district won’t address.

“Most of the problems we’re addressing, or we’re concerned with are not new. I’ve been here a decade and it’s the same problems for 10 years,” he said.

An anonymous person sent NBC4 a copy of a letter sent to school leaders. It’s from the staff at West High School to the Columbus School Board and Superintendent among others.

In it, it cites unheated classrooms, falling ceiling tiles and rodents as issues that are disrupting the learning environment.

West High School parent Travis Thompson said the school is being ignored.

“They have already invested into the surrounding schools, surrounding suburb schools, surrounding districts, but they won’t put any money into this…it’s unreal,” said Thompson.

He said kids like his are suffering.

“I think any teenager is going to have a hard time concentrating, let alone putting them in a miserable condition,” said Thompson.

The district said it met with West High School staff to talk about the problems after getting the letter.

It said it’s already putting new systems in place to address janitorial issues. It said the school will also see some improvements over the next five years thanks to the recent levy passed by voters.

Murray said he’d like to see a plan.

“It’s been too long, we need to see action.”

The district said the Superintendent wasn’t available to talk on camera Monday. It said to rebuild or renovate it will ultimately have to ask the voters for more resources.

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