Pictures released show damage to condemned Sumner Co. bleachers
The school system has acquired 16 sets of temporary bleachers for use at impacted stadiums.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - Sumner County Schools released an inspection report showing why inspectors restricted anyone from using bleachers at three high schools for the rest of the year. It comes after school officials found Beech High School’s visitor side bleachers crumbled to the ground last week after storm damage.
In the report there are pictures of moss lurking underneath the Beech High School home stands, which were condemned by the inspector after they said it cracked and weakened the wall.
Water damage is also the reason the roof caved in beneath the bleachers.
WSMV4 showed the pictures to Cheyenne Gordon, a Sumner County mom, along with images of the damage at Hendersonville High School on the visiting side, and cracks in the walls of Portland High School’s home stands.
“Our schools are crumbling,” said Goodman. “It’s not a jealousy among other schools, it’s just an outcry from parents saying our schools are crumbling we need attention too.”
It’s attention Sumner County School Board Member Andy Lacy tried to bring up at the board meeting Tuesday night to raise awareness to more than bleachers.
“We’ve got schools in my district that have water leaks and they’ve been dealing with it for years,” he said. “I went to one of my schools last week and they still have two portables on their campus. You talk about Liberty Creek, but we still have two portables.”
Liberty Creek High School is Sumner County’s newest school that opened last year. This is the standard Director of Schools Dr. Scott Langford said he wants all schools to meet. WSMV4 spoke with him Tuesday when he admitted the district did not do a thorough job inspecting bleachers.
“I think we are guilty as anyone else for not investing in infrastructure like that,” he said. “But we chose classrooms, we chose schools, we chose to provide the best student experience. Now, as this has come to light, we are going to do everything in our power to make our stadiums and athletic facilities as safe as possible.”
Tuesday night, the school board pushed to do annual or biennial inspections. Sumner County Schools said there is no law that requires schools to get their bleachers inspected. However, it is a suggestion from companies.
But parents like Goodman hope there’s more than new bleachers coming down the pipeline for other schools.
“While words are nice saying ‘Oh, we’re going to build you up,’ it would be better to be backing it with a timeline and a budget to really let these students, teachers, and staff at these other schools know that they are not forgotten about,” she said.
The Sumner County School Board did approve 16 sets of temporary bleachers to be dispersed to high schools that need them. They will be ready to go in three weeks.
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