Tempe school for students with autism repairing after floods

St. Dominic Savio Academy, a non-profit special needs school, was forced to close due to water damage and needs help to replace unsalvageable materials. If you'd like to help, go to https://www.gofundme.com/stdomsavio

TEMPE, Ariz. - A nonprofit school for K-12 students with autism in Tempe has major flood damage after a pipe burst sometime Sunday.

And they’ve had to turn their students away until they set up in a temporary location while cleanup and repairs are being done.

"A drinking fountain had broken and water was just spraying out of it,” said Corinna Ndolo, the director of St. Dominic Savio Academy.

Three inches of water filled the school Sunday, damaging everything it touched, and canceling classes.

For students with autism, structure is key.

"Our youngest client is 17 months old, up to 19 years,” said Ndolo. “Routine is very important, and sticking to a schedule and having predictable activities."

But for now, the building is unfit for anyone to learn in a safe environment.

The first two or three feet of drywall have been cut out of practically every wall. The carpets are stained with water that leaked through doorways, and it’s posing a threat of mold growing.

Mirannda Hayes is the lead therapist for the high school students. She was there during the flooding.

Returning Tuesday, she said she wants to cry seeing all the school's furniture placed outside the school to dry off.

"Standing outside and we saw our school on the playground,” she said.

The school has insurance an insurance policy, but since it's a non-profit, it's still a setback. And Ndolo does not knowing how much insurance will cover.

If you’d like to help, you can contribute to the nonprofit school’s GoFundMe account.

© 2017 KPNX-TV


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