Broward Public Schools to ‘fully open’ Friday after excessive flooding forced closure

Broward County Public Schools Superintendent Peter Licata announced that schools and district offices will be fully open Friday, just two days after heavy rains flooded and damaged several schools.

“Tomorrow we are expected to be open fully,” Licata said. “We just got off the meeting with the regionals and the cabinet members. We are going to be fully open.”

Multiple schools in Broward County reported flooding in buildings and parking lots, and at least a couple were dealing with power issues Thursday.

BCPS announced Wednesday night that all school activities, events, field trips, sporting events, scheduled meetings, other planned events and evening classes would be canceled due to the excessive flooding and rainstorms in the area.

Licata said moving forward, school employees and personnel will be canvassing schools to assess any damage or water intrusion.

He also stated that some schools in the county remain flooded.

Those schools include the following:

  • C. Robert Markham Elementary School, located at 1501 NW 15th Ave
  • Pompano Beach Middle, located 310 NE 6th St.
  • North Side Elementary, located 120 NE 11th St.
  • Piper High School, located 8000 NW 44th St.
  • Northeast High School, located at 700 NE 56th St.
  • Western High School, located at 1200 SW 136th Ave.

At Markham Elementary, the school’s front parking lot was underwater as access to classrooms remained limited.

A contractor that was working on the school Thursday afternoon was tasked with pumping out the water.

Sky 10 Flew over the scene of Piper High in Sunrise and Northeast High in Oakland Park Thursday afternoon, where both schools’ parking lots were flooded with water.

School officials also said that Western High had water in its auditorium and saturating its football fields.

Licata also said that two to three schools in Broward experienced power issues due to the flooding and feels that closing schools on Thursday was the right call to make.

“No one was in harm’s way this morning and in our view, the right call was to go ahead and close down today to make sure that everyone is safe,” he said.

Licata was also critical of himself after saying that he’d like to make the decision to close schools sooner but admits that the district is still adapting to a changing weather system.

Watch Broward County school officials give an update on school closures due to weather in the video below.

About the Authors:

Ryan Mackey is a Digital Journalist at WPLG. He was born in Long Island, New York, and has lived in Sunrise, Florida since 1994.

In January 2017, Hatzel Vela became the first local television journalist in the country to move to Cuba and cover the island from the inside. During his time living and working in Cuba, he covered some of the most significant stories in a post-Fidel Castro Cuba.