Heat still not fully restored at Roosevelt

2013-02-05T22:45:00Z 2013-02-06T08:42:06Z Heat still not fully restored at RooseveltCarmen McCollum carmen.mccollum@nwi.com, (219) 662-5337 nwitimes.com

GARY | Parents of students at Roosevelt College and Career Academy say it's still cold inside the building following a previous school shutdown because of a broken heating system.

Roosevelt — one of five academically troubled Indiana schools taken over by the state last year and turned over to private groups — was closed four consecutive days late last month because of heating problems.

Roosevelt is operated by Tennessee-based EdisonLearning Inc., a for-profit education management company, but the Gary Community School Corp. owns the building and is the landlord.

EdisonLearning officials went to court last month, and a Marion County Superior Court Judge ruled that all repairs are to be made by the Gary Community School Corp. and that EdisonLearning is not to employ anyone to repair the heating system.

Gary Superintendent Cheryl Pruitt, who pledged to make the repairs, left a maintenance person at Roosevelt to oversee operation of the boilers last week. She could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

EdisonLearning's Vanessa Ronketto, who serves as Roosevelt school superintendent, said she has been working to take temperature readings room by room.

"They are currently entering the final numbers into a tracking document that we are using to review the situation," she said early Tuesday. "The Gary community school district has been working to replace coils one by one. The coils had to be ordered. The repair work is not yet completed in all spaces."

Shortly before 5 p.m., Ronketto said temperature readings in all classroom spaces were taken.

"There are 12 classroom spaces that are below 65 degrees. When we reinstated school last week, we moved four classes into other available spaces. Currently, we do not have any other warm spaces to move classes to," she said.

Ronketto also said there are some broken or cracked heating valves, issues that were previously identified and reported.

She said students in the colder classrooms may keep their coats on.

"We will continue to focus on daily documentation updates in an effort to push this problem to a positive resolution for the students at TRCCA," she said.

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