After days fighting flood, students in Fargo return to class
FARGO, N.D. - School bells are set to ring today for the first time in nearly two weeks for students who had joined the round-the-clock sandbagging effort to protect the Fargo area from a record Red River flood.
"It's almost like the first day of school in many ways," said Morgan Forness, principal of Oak Grove Lutheran School, which lost two buildings on its campus when part of a permanent flood wall buckled and let the river in. "They're kind of excited to get back in action here."
Administrators hoped the return to class will calm the nerves of a community exhausted from sandbagging and nervous about another flood fight possible later in the month. The Red River has been falling in Fargo since its record crest of 40.82 feet on March 28, but the National Weather Service says another crest in mid-April could be higher. "We want to get back to the rhythms and routines that make life as normal as possible," said Rick Buresh, superintendent of Fargo public schools.
Thousands of students from elementary school to college helped fill and stack sandbags, often singing while they worked.
Getting to school may not be routine. Millions of sandbags stacked to block the high water remain in place and many roads were battered by convoys of trucks and heavy equipment.
Bus routes had to be altered because some rural roads remain under water.