Magoffin Co. School Board suing for new school

By: Whitney Burks Email
By: Whitney Burks Email

MAGOFFIN COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - Nearly 11 months after a tornado destroyed a Magoffin County middle school school board officials say they are tired of fighting to get it replaced.

They say they have not been offered enough money for a suitable replacement, and Thursday they filed a multi-million dollar suit against the Kentucky School Board's insurance trust.

Magoffin County school officials say 11 months is too long for the middle school to sit ripped apart and completely unusable.

"We're just tired of fighting with them. We just thought we'd take it to court and let a jury of our peers do it," said Superintendent Stanley Holbrook.

He says they have been in negotiations with the state insurance board, and the latest offer was $13.6 million, but Holbrook says that is not even close to what it should be.

"I need to build a 69,000 square foot building, but I don't want to build it on the same campus. I want to build it off that campus because that's why we got hit. Four schools got hit by a tornado because they're all on the same campus," he said.

Because of the damage the middle school students are using the high school.

"That's not a good situation for our students. It's safe for our students, but it's not a good educational situation," Holbrook said.

Holbrook says having 900 students in a building meant for 600 has damaged their learning experience and he thinks the inurance should pay for that.

"Kentucky pays $32 a day per child for their education. So we're talking about $32 per day per child which is well over $5,000 per year per child," he said.

He believes the state board should pay about $20 million.

"Our insurance policy is quite easy to read. It says replacement," he said.

Holbrook says he expects a settlement before the suit goes to court.

Mountain News tried to contact officials with the Kentucky School Board Insurance Trust late Thursday afternoon, but the calls were not returned.

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