- Associated Press - Friday, January 24, 2014

STURGIS, S.D. (AP) - Officials are beginning reconstruction of a middle school in Sturgis that was heavily damaged when its roof collapsed under the weight of 3 feet of snow during an early October blizzard.

The school board this week awarded a $102,600 contract to a local company to do interior demolition work. The job is to wrap up by the end of March.

The board next month will call for bids for reconstruction work. The goal is for that work to begin April 1 and wrap up by mid-to-late summer, Superintendent Don Kirkegaard said.

The blizzard that hit Oct. 4-5 dumped as much as 4 feet of snow in western South Dakota’s Black Hills. When the roof of Sturgis Williams Middle School collapsed it took out the sprinkler system, flooding parts of the building, the Black Hills Pioneer reported (https://bit.ly/1fbtSBp).

The school has damage to its roof, walls, carpeting, and floor and ceiling tiles, and has been shut down since the storm.

Sixth-grade students are attending classes in the school district’s administration building, seventh-graders in a church and eighth-graders at the high school. Kirkegaard said things have gone well.

“The students and teachers have stepped up, and we’ve had a fabulous transition,” he said.

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Information from: Black Hills Pioneer, https://www.bhpioneer.com

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