"Winter cleaning" at Butler High School

By: Jessica Floyd Email
By: Jessica Floyd Email

News 12 First at Five, November 8, 2007

AUGUSTA, Ga. - Already this school year, one Richmond County high school has been vandalized and set on fire. Now it's getting some much-needed attention from the man in charge. Superintendent Dr. Dana Bedden says Butler High needs to be cleaned from the inside out.

Surveillance video of Butler High School showed 2 teenagers vandalizing classrooms, scattering papers and breaking windows. It's the type of thing Dr. Bedden says he won't tolerate.

"We need parents to hold their children accountable when they damage the facility. We need the community when they see people on the property who shouldn't be there to call the police or the Richmond County Board of Police so that we can take care of property," said Bedden.

Replacing damaged property is costing you taxpayer money. Officers estimate $50,000 worth of damage was done at Butler during this year's vandalism. So, Dr. Bedden is having the outside fixed up -- and the inside.

"A parent shared with me some concerns about the cleanliness of Butler and asked if I could come visit. So, I met the mayor on a saturday and was quite disappointed with what I saw," said Bedden.

Dr. Bedden saw ceiling tiles that needed to be replaced after someone started a fire in the school and floors that needed to be cleaned and waxed. Bedden says he was disappointed.

"Disappointed and somewhat disgusted by what I was able to see. Environment influences attitude and we want to provide an environment in which students are able to think about quality and that they matter," said Bedden.

Three thousand square feet of the school are in especially bad shape. It'll take 2000 hours to complete the cleaning and repairs. But Bedden says -- for the students -- it's worth it.

"I hope our students or children will say,'I like it like this and I want to make sure people don't tear down my school because I don't want to go to school in a dirty environment," said Bedden optimistically.

Langford Middle School also did not meet maintenance standards. Both Butler High School and Langford Middle will be cleaned within the next two weeks.

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  • by walter Location: johnson on Dec 7, 2007 at 03:21 PM
    There are not enough help in some of the schools. The schools with 300 kids have the same amount of help as the ones with 600 kids. This is killing the help at some schools because the helper leave or lay out a lot and nothing be done about it.
  • by Another concerned parent Location: Augusta on Nov 13, 2007 at 11:02 AM
    We all thank Dr. Bedden for bringing this to light. Board members are aware of the Butler environment since they attended a Meet and Greet at Butler in January 2007. This situation has been brought to the board members attention on more than one occasion. Thanks to that parent who could get through to Dr. Bedden about Butler and convince him to visit the school so he could see for himself about Butler's situation. Parents, students, and the community members must be more involved in their local schools in order for improvements to take place. It is easy for everyone on the outside looking in to criticize the situation, but everyone needs to ask themselves, "What are we doing to improve the situation?" Schools need volunteers, every school has a list of projects that can be taken on by local organizations. Booster clubs and PTAs/PTSAs can only do so much without parent and community participation.
  • by Butler Student Location: Augusta on Nov 11, 2007 at 05:18 PM
    As a concerned student I also want to say think you Dr Bedden as well. I agree with Bet, there very right. We have Dr.Reeves and three other Asst. Principals tell me why were not operating like we have three.
  • by Bet Location: Augusta on Nov 9, 2007 at 04:45 PM
    As A concerned Parent I want to say to Dr. Bedden that I really appreciate him coming to Butler. Now that something is being done to the facility he might want to check into the Administration as well. Dr. Reeves don't think there is anything wrong with the school all he does is walk up and down the halls with his head down.
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