CVHS hasn’t had any drastic fires in years, but in a routine inspection of the school, the Alameda County Fire Marshall found 147 safety code violations in need of quick fixing.
After conducting a thorough inspection, the fire marshall produced an extensive 17-page report about the violations. The report details specific room numbers and how they need to be updated. It is full of small changes like “remove hanging objects from ceiling” and “discontinue use of power strip,” and more alarming ones like “remove all combustible materials from Tea area” and “smoke/fire alarm line is hanging low from the ceiling, remove.”
In many cases, teachers will have to rearrange their entire classrooms to meet requirements for safety regarding posters, cords, outlets and power strips.
“What’s really challenging for staff is that we’re really limited in where our resources are,” said Principal Blaine Torpey, who added that he “can only imagine how frustrating it would be to have everything set up and then have to change it to comply with the code.” But he has faith in CVHS teachers to do what they need to do to make the campus safe.
Most classrooms need some rearranging, and many teachers who will be heavily affected by this report are less than excited to do so. Honors Chemistry teacher Deborah Yager has posters lining her walls and 3D models of atoms hanging from her ceiling, all of which will have to come down.
“I’m sad I have to let go of all of this stuff, but I know it’s worth it; it makes sense,” Yager commented, jokingly adding that she was still in a mourning period for all of her atomic models that her students have built for her over the years.
CVHS staff members understand that the changes are necessary to keep everyone safer, but nobody’s jumping for joy at the loss of their classrooms’ color and individuality.