Students and staff returned to the Vernon Malone College and Career Academy’s campus in Raleigh on Wednesday, nearly three months after flooding from Hurricane Matthew damaged the main building.
Vernon Malone’s main building was damaged the weekend of Oct. 8-9 from flooding from Matthew. Students had been dispersed to four different sites around Wake County until the main building reopened.
“So wonderful to be back in our school home today @VernonMaloneCCA,” Ashlie Thompson, principal of Vernon Malone, tweeted Wednesday. “Thanks so much to all, especially @WCPSS, for making it happen #vmstrong.”
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Following the flooding, the Wake County school board approved contracts in November to repair and reopen Vernon Malone’s campus at 2200 S. Wilmington St.
In a Dec. 12 letter to parents, Thompson said students would be able to return to the main building on Jan. 4 for the start of second semester.
Thompson said that although renovations and repairs will not be complete, there has been enough significant progress for the building to pass all safety and health requirements. She said the remainder of the work will be completed on nights and weekends.
The small specialized high school opened in August 2014 in a renovated Coca-Cola bottling plant. It’s a partnership between the Wake County school system and Wake Technical Community College.
Students can graduate with a high school diploma and training in eight specialized areas taught by instructors from Wake Tech. Program offerings include automobile-collision repair, cosmetology, welding, nursing assistant, bio-pharmaceuticals, simulation and game development, applied engineering and multi-trades, which covers air conditioning, electrical and plumbing.