Classes resume at St. Patrick's Catholic School

By Roslyn Giles  - email | bio

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Pauline Espinoza's Pre-K4 class is energetic and happy to back at school.  A few days ago, their faces were filled with fear as they were led out the burning building.  "It's been hectic and it's hard to get the kids to settle down."

In Mary Coopers Pre-K3 class, you could see it in their eyes.  "Thank God that everybody is safe; we're able to come back to school today."

Some parents had to be reassuring as their children entered an unfamiliar building.  "She said mommy, we're going to the burned school?  I was like, no Arianna, we're not going to the burned school, we're going to go to the other school and learn today as well," says Quennisha Harris.

The principal says the process went smoothly Tuesday morning as students filed into the former convent literally transformed into a school  -- just three days after the fire.

"My message this morning was determination.  We were determined to have this school open on Tuesday. It happened only because of the cooperation of the volunteers, parents and alumni as young as 9th grade and as old as many moons; they were here," says Dominiador Manio.

To ease the uncertainty, some teachers allowed students to write about the experience and draw pictures expressing their feelings.  A therapeutic process they're hoping will be good medicine for their little souls.   

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