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Parents say East Arcadia schools needs replacing, not fixing


BLADEN COUNTY, NC (WWAY) -- Parents and teachers in East Arcadia are concerned about the condition of their children's school. They say they need a new building; not just repairs.

East Arcadia is getting about $1 million in lottery money for renovations, but parents say that is not enough to solve all the problems the Bladen County school has.

"Parents had came to me, teachers had came to me, staff members had came to me as PTO president asking for help," Candice Long, a parent and the head of the school's PTO, said.

The current school was built in 1956 and has had multiple additions since. The most recent was in 1987.

"Everything is in poor condition," Long said. "For us to have a county commissioner come and say that this place is a dump, then someone needs to come and look at it."

Long says the building is full of mold, has leaks and exposed insulation, along with rusty bathroom fixtures. She also says the fire alarm system does not meet code and there is not a sprinkler system in the building.

Administrators would not let us in to see for ourselves.

"It makes you want to send your child somewhere else no matter how far it takes to get there," Long said.

County Commissioner Delilah Blanks says there are plans to build three new schools on the other side alf of the county.

"If any school is going to be replaced, then East Arcadia School should be among those schools," Blanks said.

Blanks says the school is among the most dilapidated in Bladen County.

"There is no social justice. It's not right," she said. "There's no equity, and something needs to be done about it."

Long says Bladen County's superintendent says the district only plans to put a new roof on the school and minor repairs in the building with the lottery money.

The superintendent did not return our call today, but he is holding a forum with parents at the school tonight.

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