Park Hill South High School suffered only minor damage in a fire that broke out in an electrical room on the morning of Saturday, Feb. 6 in Riverside, Mo. The Riverside (Mo.) Fire Department responded to the scene before noon, and the building was evacuated without incident, including an unknown number of students taking the ACT test. Although the test takers were in another part of the building, they will be forced to retake the examination from the beginning. According to Park Hill School District director of communications Nicole Kirby, the students were about 20 minutes from completing the test.
Kirby said the electric panel in the room was damaged along with some smoke in classrooms. However, the school reopened in time for Park Hill South’s courtwarming dance that night along with a spelling bee held at the facility.
Earlier in the week, @WhatsUpSouth — a Twitter account providing updates for activities at the school — tweeted, “Sorry South, we had to take down some of the decor because they’re considered fire hazards, and the only fire we want is on the dance floor!” On the afternoon before the dance, the account said, “We’re still planning to see you all at Courtwarming tonight. We’ll keep you updated,” before adding the joke, “We’re just warming up the dance floor for you guys,” followed by three fire emojis.
The school was open and fully functional for all classes on Monday, Feb. 8, and all of the damage had been fixed, Kirby said.