Nearly two years after it was burned by the hand of an arsonist, the Southwest Private School is getting a new lease on life and some in the surrounding neighborhood are all for it.
You will recall, on May 15, 2006 the school burned to the ground. It was around 4 a.m. when fire crews were called to the scene on the corner of 38th Street and Quaker Avenue. It didn't take long before the entire school was engulfed in flames and billowing smoke into the quiet neighborhood just off Quaker.
Two years later, the people in that neighborhood recall that day in May, as a sad day. And they say they're all for a new Southwest Private School. "I miss it, I missed it awfully bad," said Joyce Beevers.
"I always remember that, from growing up in this neighborhood," added Leigh-Ann Johnson.
Johnson and Beevers live in the neighborhood where the Southwest Private School was located for decades before it burned.
"I've lived here 30-years," said Beevers. She says the neighborhood has been too quiet since the school burned to the ground. "I sure enjoyed listening to the little children play and laugh, and you know, it was just a joy to me to hear them," Beevers added. And the possibility the school might be rebuilt is exciting news to Joyce.
Beevers said, "I'm very excited to hear it's going back in. I just love to hear those children, and I enjoy them."
"I'm pleased with it, it's good to have it back in the neighborhood," added Johnson. Leigh-Ann Johnson lives directly across the street from the school. "I would love to see the kids out here, and just hear their laughter," Johnson said.
Other people living in the neighborhood share Joyce and Leigh-Ann's excitement.
Friday we spoke to Celia Pruitt, the owner of the Southwest Private School and she says at this point she hasn't contacted a builder or architect to work on plans but when she finally does rebuild her school, it will also serve as a daycare for babies and infants.
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