After the June floods damaged several Mercedes ISD campuses, the district has been working to renovate them.
But teachers are complaining they have to rush and put together their classroom before Wednesday morning.
“You don’t see any [school administrator], rolling up their sleeves and helping [Travis Elementary teachers] out,” said Dalia Peña, a concerned Mercedes resident.
Peña is also a former substitute teacher with the district. She says teachers inside are setting up their classrooms last-minute among the smell of chemicals, toilets that don’t flush and water fountains that don’t have water.
However, the school district says that even with the recent renovations done to campuses like Travis Elementary, the school is ready for classes Wednesday morning.
“We’ve been working diligently to put all the furniture back into place,” said Mercedes ISD Superintendent Daniel Treviño.
“Their equipment is not in their room, […] they’re having to search for [it],” Peña said. “They haven’t yet to decorate to their rooms.”
Since the school district delayed starting classes, the district is submitting a waiver to the Texas Education Agency. Treviño says that if the waiver is denied, the district will find a way to make up for lost time.
“The building has been assigned to us for occupancy,” Treviño said. “It’s just a matter of placing our furniture back into place. We’ve already waxed the floors and done all of our painting and so forth.”
For Peña, she doesn’t appreciate teachers having to rush last minute to set up for new school year.
“This is not right. We are taught to advocate for our students. So, this is what I’m doing. If I have to stand alone to bring light to what they do, then that’s what I’m going to do,” Peña said.