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During a meeting at Portage High School on April 10, I experienced a situation that no superintendent wants to endure.

There was a fire in the school auditorium.

Thanks to the actions of a number of our staff members, the fire was able to be extinguished quickly, and all students evacuated the high school safely. All of our schools run regular safety drills, and I’m proud of our students for doing exactly what they were supposed to do during this incident.

Once I knew that all of the students had evacuated the building and the fire was out, I realized that this would impact our upcoming spring musical, “Cinderella.”

Thankfully, the fire was small. However, the process of cleaning, repairing and replacing will take us some time.

The physical damage done to the auditorium pales in comparison to the effect this fire has had on our students.

They spent weeks preparing their performance for our community, only to learn that the area in which they have practiced is no longer able to house the musical.

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Despite facing some spatial challenges, we have rescheduled the musical for this weekend in our high school’s West Auditorium.

As adults, we all know the feeling of working so hard on something only for it to end in disappointment. Therefore, I am urging the community to attend today's performance to show your support for our students. Let’s come together, as the Portage community, to show our students that in every bad situation there is good waiting around the corner. Let’s show them that there is a strong community ready to lift them up when they feel down.

Let’s show our students the caring community that is Portage.

Please join us at the Portage High School West Auditorium at 2 p.m. to see our students’ performance of “Cinderella.” Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for teenagers and seniors, and $4 for children 12 and under.

Perhaps more important than seeing the show itself, you will see the dedication of our talented theater students and their commitment to putting on a fun and entertaining show for our community.

Let’s come together and show our students what it means to have Portage Pride.

Amanda Alaniz is superintendent of Portage Township Schools. The opinions are the writer's.

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