PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WPRI) — Henry J. Winters Elementary School students will be learning remotely for at least one more week after a pipe burst and flooded parts of the building.
The damaged was first discovered by custodians last week after Rhode Island experienced a record-breaking cold snap.
It’s been all hands on deck since then, according to Acting Superintendent Benedetti-Ramzi. She said that remediation crews have been hard at work drying everything out and removing damaged furniture and equipment.
Benedetti-Ramzi said 23 classrooms were impacted by the flooding, of which three were significantly damaged. The pipe burst is believed to have been caused by a heating coil failure.
The school will reopen on Feb. 27 after winter break, though Benedetti-Ramzi said not all of the classrooms will be ready by that time.
Benedetti-Ramzi reassured residents that taxpayers won’t have to front the cost of repairs.
The newly-constructed elementary school opened last September. Benedetti-Ramzi said she’s not sure how or why the heating coil failed, but the cause is being investigated.
In an effort to make up for lost in-person learning time, Benedetti-Ramzi said the district is offering activities at the Boys and Girls Club of Pawtucket this Thursday so students can see their friends and teachers face-to-face.