Port Orange Elementary faces $2.3M in water damage repairs

97-year-old elementary school is still in original building

PORT ORANGE, Fla – A Volusia County school may need over $2 million in repairs after the district said it is heavily water damaged. Board members voted on an emergency declaration Tuesday night for Port Orange Elementary.

The district said it could cost $2.3 million to make repairs to the school’s exterior walls.

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“The outside cavity of Port Orange Elementary, the wall itself has been compromised, and it has water intrusion from the outside of the building,” said Earl Johnson, the district’s chief operations officer.

The 97-year-old elementary school is still in its original building on Dunlawton Avenue. Johnson said water has recently got in between the exterior walls.

“It was exacerbated during the hurricane, but the situation happened prior to the hurricane,” he said.

Johnson said they made repairs after the hurricane to classrooms with water damage so they would be safe against mold, but he said these repairs need to happen quickly.

“The kids are not in any danger. All of the work is going to be done outside. It’s going to be probably about a six-month project,” he said.

The mortar between the bricks, the lintels and windows will have to be replaced but Johnson said students and staff will be able to continue with school as planned.

“It’s going to be as least disruptive as possible. We’re going to start the project this summer, so we’re going to have maybe two and a half, three months to begin the project so it’s only going to interfere at the beginning of the school year,” Johnson said.

The measure passed during Tuesday’s meeting.

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Molly joined News 6 at the start of 2021, returning home to Central Florida.