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Portables from lava threat will help ease space crunch at Campbell

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Overcrowding at Campbell High School will be alleviated with portable classrooms that had been used during emergency lava evacuations in Puna last year.

The Department of Education said Thursday it will use portable classroom structures at Keonepoko Elementary School at Campbell to reduce classroom overcrowding, and at and Kealakehe High in a renovation project. The units are expected to be ready for use in January.

The DOE had leased 10 portables to create Keonepoko Elementary School North last October when encroaching lava threatened the school. The Keonepoko students and staff returned to their original location after the emergency evacuation was lifted.

The 10 structures will be purchased for $1.6 million and moved to Kealakehe and Campbell.

Two will be used at Kealakehe to provide four ‘swing space’ classrooms for use during a science building renovation project. Eight portables will go to Campbell to provide 15 classrooms, each with air-conditioning.

“We are constantly looking for possible solutions to address the heat and capacity issues at our schools,” said Office of School Facilities and Support Services Assistant Superintendent Dann Carlson. “The purchase and moves of these portables fits within our budget and addresses immediate concerns at these schools.”

“We’ve been working with the facilities team to find a way to help our students at Campbell,” said Campbell-Kapolei Complex Area Superintendent Heidi Armstrong. “This is a great solution for us as we continue to discuss solutions for our long-term needs in this ever-growing community.”

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